Feudal Transformation

Teaching diagram of the Feudal Transformation, by me

Teaching diagram of the Feudal Transformation, by me

This is an index to the various posts I have written reacting to scholarship wrestling with the big question of the Feudal Transformation. If you don’t know what that even is, start with no. 1… Or, I would advise, save your time and read something more soluble. Meanwhile, these posts exist as a kind of initial argument with myself and anyone else who’ll read it prior to my eventually trying to write about this huge subject succintly.

  1. Feudal Transformations, a reaction to the variation covered by Poly & Bournazel’s seminal text, The Feudal Transformation
  2. Feudal Transformations II, a short report on a systematic breakdown of the Transformation as seen by Josep María Salrach in 1998
  3. Feudal Transformations III, a reflection on Victor Farias’s saying that the nobility in positions of public power in Catalonia are actually reliant on the peasantry for support
  4. “Of course you realise this means war… “, not strictly part of the series but a narrative of the events surrounding the Transformation as it’s held to have happened in Catalonia
  5. Feudal Transformations IV, a further reflection on Josep María Salrach, this time dealing with how the nobles control castles both before and after those events but not necessarily during
  6. Feudal Transformations V: el ‘Hipòtesi’ del Professor Riu, dealing with the ideas of long continuity of local power in various forms posited by Manuel Riu in his classic article, “Hipòtesi entorn dels orígens del feudalisme a Catalunya”
  7. Feudal Transformations VI: Chris Wickham suggests, the involvement of Chris’s ideas of what happens to power in the period of incastellamento via an article of his on Tuscany, also containing a list much like this of parts I to V
  8. Plz be respectin feudalizm: further opinions from Chris Wickham, not for some reason numbered, but should be in here, the first of several reactions to a Spoleto conference volume on feudalism, in which Chris’s introductory theoretical argument is found useful but not finally my answer
  9. Feudal Transformations VII: Michel Bur and the motte-and-bailey castle, second Spoleto response, arguing that monocausal explanations will never do
  10. Feudal Transformations VIII: two ways of confusing the issue, fourth Spoleto response, comparing German and South Italian cases through two very differently-styled articles
  11. When is a fief not a fief? (Feudal Transformations IX), Spoleto the fifth, arguing against Thomas Bisson that we cannot quantify feudalism by quantifying references to fiefs
  12. Feudal Transformations X: Stephen White vs. Thomas Bisson, 2nd round, finding problems both with Bisson’s schematism and White’s somewhat dehumanised takedown
  13. Feudal Transformations XI: Chris Wickham takes still another (at)tack, documenting Chris’s new attempts to describe change via the means of studying assemblies
  14. The unbearable emptiness of being post-Roman: Aragonese depopulation and the rest of the field (Feudal Transformations XII), a study of what the archæogical chronology does to the historians’ picture of this supposedly rapid and time-localised change
  15. Feudal Transformations XIII: storing more and working less, a note about two attempts by students of Pierre Bonnassie’s to put some archæological flesh on the bones of his views on agricultural growth in the tenth and eleventh centuries
  16. Feudal Transformations XIV: Königsferne, exploring the possibilities of a paradigm of royal politics in which the status of kingship is the greater the further from the king one is
  17. Feudal Transformations XV: proving a negative with power relations in Catalonia, arguing that the documents of how castles were held and handed out in Catalonia in the period before the supposed transformation simply won’t support a reading as `feudal’ arrangements avant la lettre
  18. Feudal Transformations XVI: two fields or three?, wondering whether the shift to three-field agriculture needs to be in this story and if so where
  19. Another one not numbered in the series, but obviously following up on no. 14 above, looking at changes in castle tenure in Catalonia in charters from the run-up to the year 1000
  20. Feudal Transformations XVII: the scribes who take us through the mutation documentaire, a close reading of changing modes of social organisation in a charter by a scribe who remembered the way it used to be…
  21. Feudal Transformations XVIII: what’s behind it all?, a brief entanglement with Guy Bois’s book The Transformation of the Year 1000 over issues of demography and climate as causes of change
  22. Feudal Transformations XIX: change before the year 1000, a more thorough critique of Bois’s theory based (of course) on a comparison with Catalonia

I’m sure there’ll be more; I haven’t solved it yet…

One response to “Feudal Transformation

  1. Pingback: Darn climate sceptics! get out of my field! « A Corner of Tenth-Century Europe

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