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The Man Who Thought He Was NapoleonToward a Political History of Madness$
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Laure Murat

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226025735

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226025872.001.0001

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Reason in Revolt

Reason in Revolt

(p.199) Five Reason in Revolt
The Man Who Thought He Was Napoleon

Laure Murat

University of Chicago Press

The last chapter investigates the period of the Paris Commune (March 18 to May 28, 1871) or the Fourth French Revolution, when a socialist government briefly ruled Paris in the wake of the French-Prussian war. After the revolutions of 1789, 1830, and 1848, the Paris Commune encapsulated a century continuously in revolt and represents the summit of psychiatrists’ reaction, as some physicians suggested building specific asylums intended for the “Communards” alone. Countering such statements, the archives of the Sainte-Anne hospital, the only lunatic asylum that remained open in the capital during the Commune, offer rare and unprecedented documents debunking a certain imagery of the Commune, with its agitators, “pétroleuses” (female supporters of the Commune), and the devastation caused by alcoholism.

Keywords:   Paris Commune, Sainte-Anne Hospital, Jules Vallès, pétroleuses, Communards

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