Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Funerals, Politics, and Memory in Modern France, 1789–1996$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Avner Ben-Amos

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198203285

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198203285.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 21 October 2021

The State Funeral as a Rite of Passage

The State Funeral as a Rite of Passage

(p.258) (p.259) 9 The State Funeral as a Rite of Passage
Funerals, Politics, and Memory in Modern France, 1789–1996

Avner Ben-Amos

Oxford University Press

In France, the 1789 Revolution brought about the ‘transfer of the sacred’ from the Church to the State with its two aspects: the Republic, as a legal-political ‘grid’ concept, and the Fatherland, as an ethnic-cultural ‘group’ concept. Ceremonies are more than ‘symbolic mirrors of ourselves’ that merely reflect the power relations within a society. They are themselves part of power, which they both express and create. How did the state funerals of the Third Republic perform this dual role? In order to understand the inner mechanism of these ceremonies, it is necessary to analyse them as rites of passage that follow death. For the public, the state funeral also became a rite of passage in the form of a multiple pilgrimage: to the place where the great man lay in state, to the procession, and to the tomb. The state funeral was the point where two different rites of passage coalesced: that of the great man and that of the people who participated in the ceremony.

Keywords:   France, state funerals, ceremonies, pilgrimage, Third Republic, sacred, rites of passage, great man

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .