Christophe Prochasson, Les années électriques (1880–1910), 1991

Robert Beck
PROCHASSON: Les annees electriques (1880Les annees electriques ( -1910 225 plods on with the presentation of statistical tables, charts, and maps, thereby conscituting what is surely one of the most complete records ever assembled of demographic and commerical activity in the railway age. If anyone seeks an illustration for the faults and vinues of the legenda ry German Gründlichkeit, this book can be warmly recommended. Beck's analysis nonetheless proves to be of considerable value. No general
more » ... narrative could describe nearly so weil how the railways changed daily life in the small communities of France. All of them wanted their own depot, it seemed, and for good reason. Towns with train Stations tended to attract small business, promote centralized markets, aid nearby agriculture and animal husband ry ; tbose that were bypassed by the train meanwhile slumped back into the countryside. Ideally, of course, we would need cornparable research into several other regions to confirm these findings. Yet the demonstration is convincing, and one suspects that the same pattern must hold true for similar circu. mstances elsewhere. Tedious or not, therefore, Beck's treatment of his topic deserves our attention and com mendation. Allan MrrcHELL, San Diego, Cal. Christophe PROCHASSON, Les annees electriques. 1880-1910, Paris (La Decouverte) 1991, 489S. (L'aventure intellectuelle de la France au xx c siecle, 1). Die anstehende Jahrhundertwende scheint zur historischen Besinnung einzuladennach mehreren Werken, u.a. jenem vonJean-Pierre Rioux, das in dieser Zeitschrift besprochen wurde 1 , liefen Christophe Prochasson im Rahmen der Reihe ,-L'aventure intellectuelle de la France au xx c siecle« seinen Beitrag, einen kulturhistorischen Rückblick auf das letzte
doi:10.11588/fr.1993.3.58480 fatcat:veyqhp5psrd77daxtbmqdi5pue