The Invention of the Eyewitness: Witnessing and Testimony in Early Modern France
In an examination of eyewitness travel writing in thirteenth- through sixteenth-century France, Andrea Frisch studies the figure of the witness at a historical juncture and in a cultural context in which that figure is generally thought to have begun to assume a recognizably modern form and function.
Whereas most accounts of early modern travel literature tend to read modern presuppositions about witnessing and testimony back into the material, Frisch approaches the early modern witness in terms of the cultural legacy of the Middle Ages. Through primary readings in law and theology, Frisch documents the tension between the ethical witness (the characteristic witness of premodernity) and the epistemic witness (the modern witness) and explores the impact of that tension on the figure of the witness in pre- and early modern French-language travel literature.
Results 1-3 of 18
Similarly , the explicit premise of the compurgatory oath is that testimony must be
taken on faith or not at all . Thus , in the medieval period , perjury has no special
relationship to “ fiction ” ; it is instead , quite simply , bad faith . A false witness ...
This attitude will be reiterated in the seventeenth century , when Jean Danty
justifies the promulgation of the ordinance of Moulins by claiming that the abuse
of testimonial good faith , on the increase since the time of Moses , had reached ...
goût de foi ” ( IC 4 / 17 / 33 , 385 - 6 ; “ but I deny that it can be eaten without the
taste of faith ” ) . Christ is indeed present in the testimony of the Calvinist
Eucharist , but the efficacy of Calvinist testimonial representation requires faith on
the part ...