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Humanism as Civic Project: The Collège de Guyenne 1533-1583

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Title: Humanism as Civic Project: The Collège de Guyenne 1533-1583
Author: Hopkins, Marjorie I.
Department: Department of History
Program: History
Advisor: Goddard, Peter A.
Abstract: Que disciplina adhuc observata in suo Burdigalem Gymnasio notior evadat, nec facile usquam depravetur. Thus, in 1583, the Jurade, the city council, of Bordeaux concluded its endorsement of the publication of Elie Vinet's Schola Aquitanica, the school programme of the Collège de Guyenne. This thesis examines the humanist programme at the Collège de Guyenne in Bordeaux from 1533 to 1583. Most studies of the Collège have focused on its foundation and institutional structure. Since Ernest Gaullieur's institutional history in 1874, research into Renaissance, Reformation, and educational history have made significant advancements, all of which shed additional light onto the Collège's history and its role as a source of civic identity in a growing national context. Additionally, the application of Pierre Bourdieu's concept of habitus grants insight into the social climate of academics in the sixteenth century. This thesis contributes to our knowledge of the Collège's and the regents' place in the development of Bordelais and French identity, but it also elucidates the regents' impact on the students who attended there, particularly Michel de Montaigne, a well-known writer who was apparently self-disclosing, whose education at the Collège shaped him into a prudent thinker with the capacity to see all sides of an issue. This study relies on sources published in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century as part of French national studies. These sources include foundation charters, notarial and royal records, letters, sixteenth-century publications, Inquisitorial trials, and material sources. The central argument of this thesis is that the regents at the Collège de Guyenne found a balance between stasis and change amidst the turmoil of the sixteenth century as they contributed to the emerging Renaissance identity of a resurgent French city. The regents at the Collège de Guyenne embraced the diversity of Bordeaux and, in 1583, the Jurade endorsed the programme at Guyenne and declared that "[il] ne pût jamais s'altérer facilement."
Date: 2016-09
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