For this conference, departing from the Low Countries and preferably using the method of ‘pragmatic induction’ presented by histoire croisée, we want to trace the ways in which literature in French (not limited to French literature) has influenced cultural life in general. This implies both the interaction with French-writing fellow-countrymen in the Netherlands and Belgium, with French literature itself, as well as the contacts using French in the European and global context. Special attention is paid to cultural intercrossings in history, such as the 1848 revolution, the inauguration of the five-yearly state prize in 1855, the publication of Charles de Coster’s La Légende d’Ulenspiegel in 1867, Victor Hugo’s first grand tour, the journal Van Nu en Straks, etcetera. More than has been the case till now, we want to stimulate textual evidence.
Possible approaches for this transnational study (both synchronic as diachronic) include travel accounts and lecture trips, translations and critiques, mediators and exiles, journals, clubs and associations, publishers and libraries, literary, theatrical and other artistic representations.
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