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Citizens

A Chronicle of the French Revolution
Durée : 36 h et 48 min
Catégories : Histoire, Europe
4,7 out of 5 stars (3 notations)

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Description

From one of the truly preeminent historians of our time, this is a landmark book chronicling the French Revolution. Simon Schama deftly refutes the contemporary notion that the French Revolution represented an uprising of the oppressed poor against a decadent aristocracy and corrupt court. He argues instead that the revolution was born of a rift among the elite over the speed of progress toward modernity and science, social and economic change. Schama’s approach, weaving in and out of private and public lives in the fashion of a novel, brings us closer than we have ever been to the harrowing and seductive French Revolution.

Simon Schama is a professor of art history and history at Columbia University and is the author of numerous award-winning books; his history Rough Crossings won the National Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction. He has written and presented more than thirty documentaries for the BBC, PBS, and the History Channel.

©1989 Simon Schama (P)1990 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Commentaires

“Lively descriptions of major events, colorful cameos of leading characters (and obscure ones too), bring them to life here as no other general work has done…Above all, Mr. Schama tells a story, and he tells it well…A delight to read.” ( New York Times Book Review)
“An immensely readable work of distinguished scholarship that guillotined many of the romantic myths about the beginning of French democracy.” ( Time)

Ce que les auditeurs disent de Citizens

Notations
Global
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Interprétation
  • 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Histoire
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars

Worth the time

The book is great: you get a clear picture about the actual people involved in this event; sound quality is a challenge on the other hand - my car basic stereo was screeching at times; worth it though

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  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Hmmm....
  • Hmmm....
  • 24/09/2015

Awesome magisterial book, defective audio

What disappointed you about Citizens?

The narrative is spectacular! But as another reviewer noted, the audio file is defective. Mine conked out leaving the last 1/4 of the book inaccessible. Hey Audible, how about fixing it!

49 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Joseph M. Arnold
  • Joseph M. Arnold
  • 02/07/2015

Audio Skips!!

Any additional comments?

The audio sounds like it was ripped from a scratched CD. At first it's only occasional, a minor annoyance. Later, though, it becomes more frequent, to the point where sentences and paragraphs can't be made out.

I've tried it on different devices, and the skips are in the same place, so the problem is on Audible's end.

I tried contacting them but have received no response. They're doing this excellent book, and their customers, a disservice by not re-uploading proper audio

52 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Mark
  • Mark
  • 01/02/2016

This is a great book. However the audio skips!

What would have made Citizens better?

Fix the audio. I am reluctant to return this book as I really want to listen to it. However, the skipping of the audio becomes more and more annoying over time.

Any additional comments?

Please fix the audio on this book! It is a real disservice to the consumers who purchase this book.

17 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour J. Woo
  • J. Woo
  • 05/02/2016

Recording flaws

This recording was obviously made by tranferring audio from a set of vinyl record disks. Whoever did it must not have cared or paid much attention. The needle skipped hundreds of times. Each skip abridged the reading by about 8 words. So much was missing in parts, I couldn't really understand the material. Why the attrociuous lack of quality control?

19 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Alexander T. Gerges
  • Alexander T. Gerges
  • 08/11/2017

Warning!

This audiobook seems to have suffered from a bad recording or transfer and skips quite frequently! I’ve tried on two devices, but I think it’s the recording itself! Buyer beware!

8 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Tad Davis
  • Tad Davis
  • 30/11/2015

Savage

Schama emphasizes the great personalities involved in the French Revolution: this is the place to go for full portraits of the vacillating but sometimes courageous Louis XVI; for the puritanical Robespierre; the devilish Marat, with his repulsive skin disease; and calculating opportunists like Talleyrand.

It's also the place to go for stomach-churning descriptions of mob violence. I'm writing this in the wake of recent terrorist attacks in Paris; and I hesitate to say this because of the timing, but Paris is no stranger to the savage violence of the mob on people perceived as enemies. Once killed by a Paris mob, the victim's body was likely to be torn apart - literally - with parts paraded around the city on the ends of pikes. Heads were being removed as trophies by ordinary people for years before the guillotine made the process systematic.

The king was at Versailles; a mob stormed the palace, killed and beheaded his defenders, and forced him to move to his palace in the city, the Tuilleries, where they could keep an eye on him. Later that palace was stormed by a mob, who killed and beheaded his defenders, and forced him to take refuge elsewhere. Later still, this place of refuge was stormed again, with even worse butchery, and he was tried and condemned to the guillotine.

Schama doesn't focus exclusively on this aspect of the revolution. He gives full play to the political history of the various factions: the Montagnards, the Girondins, the Jacobins; and to the successive waves of political and sometimes physical extermination carried out by one faction against another. The Revolution was self-consciously symbolic and declamatory, and it made for magnificent "scenes" of political debate.

It's a long, fascinating account, whose only fault is that it ends rather abruptly after the death of Robespierre. There's a summing up of what happened to who, but less attention to what - if anything - it all meant. Frederick Davidson gives his usual sterling performance. (Davidson, as I've said many times, is an acquired taste: IF you've acquired the taste, the book is a great pleasure to listen to. He has an unerring instinct for character, given less free rein here than in his readings of fiction, but still in evidence.)

15 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Igor
  • Igor
  • 03/03/2020

Why is the skipping not fixed after five years?

Though I don't think it's a great book, I do believe this is the best available history of the French Revolution on Audible. Otherwise, I would have returned it because it is defective. My question is for Audible: Why has this audiobook been allowed to remain on sale for five years when it is obviously defective? Why has it not been fixed? I thought Amazon was all about the customer? I used a credit on this and it doesn't sit well with me...

6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Brenton
  • Brenton
  • 31/01/2018

Damaged copy

Doesn’t play correctly, skips syllables every minute or so. Extremely distracting to listen to. Charming performance if only it played back properly.

6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Kevin Cook
  • Kevin Cook
  • 12/04/2017

Great book, awful audiobook

What disappointed you about Citizens?

The audio quality, for what is a great book, is embarrassing. Between audio that skips throughout, a low quality recording, and audio artifacting, it's nearly unlistenable.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narrator does a fine job himself. It's the circumstances around the audio that is the problem. Periodically the recording just skips forward or backwards at a whim. The recording ranges from quiet to very loud at a moments notice, especially when the narrator hits a plossive. And any time a soft 's' is emphasized it's ear splitting.

6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour Knut
  • Knut
  • 02/11/2016

Great introduction, horrible narration

Would you listen to Citizens again? Why?

The United States in the 1980s is probably sufficiently distant from France in the late 1700s to provide a balanced look at the important events of that time and place. This book provides a great overview and lots of context, and Schama never looks away from atrocities committed by either side. Citizens is also obviously a product of the late 1980s in its scepticism towards economic regulations.

What did you like best about this story?

The best part of Citizens is the wealth of context it provides in explaining what made the revolution happen and how French society was affected.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Frederick Davidson?

While Frederick Davidson's tendency to come across as smug and sarcastic is certainly a flaw, his complete inability to pronounce French names and terms is almost enough to be a dealbreaker. His awful pronunciation isn't even consistent. Marat's murderer's name was Charlotte Corday, but Davidson pronounces it Cordaille just as often as Corday. Now, her name is a familiar one, but the problem becomes real when the listener can't tell if Davidson is referring to a man alternately as Beaulieu and Boileau, or if they are indeed two different men.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Since reading (listening to) Hilary Mantel's A Place of Greater Safety, Danton's execution has never failed to get me.

11 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Interprétation
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars
Image de profile pour NfIjee
  • NfIjee
  • 23/06/2017

the reader spoils it

Was genau hat Sie an Citizens enttäuscht?

Sorry, but the reader really spoils a potentially good book. I never reached farther then chapter 3. Then I had enough. The reader's voice sounds snarling and aggressive. Worse, the recording quality: Apart from fluctuations in volume that swallow whole syllables, I frequently thought to hear voices from the off. The reader could also have slowed down his torrent of words if only in order the help the recipient decode and digest the author's words. This book is a torment and should be taken from the shelves. No idea how it could ever pass quality inspection or what the reader has to say about his shoddy performance (or the author). I'm angry and would have exploded already if I had payed anything for the audio. As it happened I downloaded it as a bonus. Wasted now, still. What a shame!

Würden Sie es noch mal mit einem anderen Hörbuch mit Frederick Davidson versuchen?

Never again!

5 personnes ont trouvé cela utile