AuthorFambrough, Melinda Ann
AdvisorLe Hir, Marie-Pierre
Committee ChairLe Hir, Marie-Pierre
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis "memoire" explores angels in French literature from medieval through post-modern times. A belief in "bird-men" was prevalent in societies of Europe and Asia Minor since the dawn of history. During the Middle Ages, tales about the lives of saints were popular, as was the cult of Saint Michael the Archangel. With the Renaissance came contempt among French writers for legislated spirituality. Francois Rabelais' demons demonstrate this rebellious spirit in Gargantua and Pantagruel. Apologist Blaise Pascal seeks to defend Catholicism with its angels through his Pensees. During the 18th century, Voltaire argues in his Dictionnaire philosophique that angels are inventions of a needy, naive, human imagination. Such romantics as Alfred de Vigny and Victor Hugo write about their sympathy for the devil. Honore de Balzac extols their sentimental quality. Today, Regis Debray proposes that angels fulfill a human need for hierarchy tied to transmission of all cultural heritages.