Come to the Polish book premiere of Gdy Europa mówiła po francusku (In the Times When Europe Spoke French) by Marc Fumaroli, translated by Wawrzyniec Brzozowski. The publication is one of the most significant works on the 18th century and a colourful depiction of the French-language speaking Europe. One of its chapters has been devoted to Stanisław August.
Fumaroli’s book lets us explore the world of the 18th century elite and its acquainted philosophers, as well as various aspects of life at the time – diplomacy, politics and culture. Readers have a chance to learn about theatre, literature, architecture, and philosophy of the era, which the author presents with erudition, but also with ease worthy of the greatest masters of the 18th century – a period when an effortless writing style was just as important as the depth of thought.
The work does not lack facts from the life of the aristocracy and regular visitors of salons – sometimes spicy and sensational, sometimes moving, but also interesting, presented in comparison with the views of the characters and their ways of looking at the world.
Europe presented in Fumaroli’s book, although not free from concerns, remains a happy place, resembling Watteau’s paintings and plays by Marivaux. It reflects the prevailing sense of solidarity, which combines strong immersion in French language and culture,
Marc Fumaroli (born 1932) – prominent French historian and essayist. Member of many French and foreign scientific societies including Académie française, Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, British Academy, American Philosophical Society and American Academy of Arts and Letters, President of Société d’histoire littéraire de la France, former President of Société des amis du Louvre; long-standing lecturer at Collège de France, Université Paris Sorbonne, universities in Lille and Chicago and others, with honoris causa doctorate from several European universities, laureate of numerous prizes, including the Balzan Prize (2001).