The World of the Paris Cafe: Sociability among the French Working Class, 1789-1914

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In The World of the Paris Cafe, W. Scott Haine investigates what the working-class cafe reveals about the formation of urban life in nineteenth-century France. Cafe society was not the product of a small elite of intellectuals and artists, he argues, but was instead the creation of a diverse and changing working population. Making unprecedented use of primary sources-from marriage contracts to police and bankruptcy records-Haine investigates the cafe in relation to work, family life, leisure, gender roles, and political activity. This rich and provocative study offers a bold reinterpretation of the social history of the working men and women of Paris.