This article aims to describe the sociological studies of credit developed in France over the past dozen years. These studies propose a specific method and approach to address credit, primarily understanding it as a result of social interactions embedded in organizational and legal structures, with consequences on inequalities, social stratification, and individuals’ life experiences. The article is divided into four parts: after an introduction presenting what can be called the French school of the sociology of credit, we present the ‘different voice’ of the French school of the sociology of credit, which analyses the credit market according to a relational approach. The third section examines the construction of social domination at the moment of credit assessment. We then focus on the demand side: borrowers are not atomized individuals but part of households and other local communities. Finally, the conclusion discusses how this French approach to credit may be useful outside of France.
Literary History has changed its objectives during the last decades. In theory as well as in literary analysis a worldwide perspective has taken the place of strictly demarcated approaches. The openness to the world and the ongoing dialogue with the other resonates in recent French Literature. Academic critique can accompany and guide these evolutions.
Scholars of medieval French literature have often overlooked the horse as a purveyor of complex meaning within a text not only because it is mentioned in such works so often, but also because it is wholly common. The horse was one of the earliest domesticated animals in humanity’s history, and as such, it has no particular link to the realm of the merveilleux, superficially a source of creatures of richer allegorical or esthetic interest. An encounter with a frightening monster such as a dragon might represent a test of a knight’s martial skills or a challenge to his piety, whereas in contrast, what could possibly be the importance of the horse, such a ubiquitous, seemingly banal, inhabitant of the period’s literature? This study seeks (1) to elucidate the conception of the horse on the part of the medieval cleric and reader by exploring the mythical lore and contemporary bestiaries associated with the animal, and (2) to define the horse’s function in medieval romance and epic through an analysis of the relationship between the protagonist and his steed in several seminal works, most notably La Chanson de Roland and Alexandre de Paris’s Le Roman d’Alexandre.
In the middle of the 18th century in Europe, 'cosmopolitan' or 'citizen of the world' suddenly appears on the title pages of several literary works. What characterizes the cosmopolitan? And why does the term emerge at this particular moment in literary history? This article sets out to reveal the history of how 'cosmopolitan' is appropriated in French by tracing the origins and semantic transformations of the original Greek term kosmopolites (French cosmopolite or cosmopolitain) from its first rare appearances in late sixteenth-century French literature until the beginning of the 19th century, by which time the term had become quite common. The article identifies two distinct periods in this history - the cosmopolitan as author and the cosmopolitan as fictional character - and argues that there is a particular affinity between the French appropriation of the concept 'cosmopolitan' and the emerging field of literature.