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L'Histoire face à l'histoire vivante : expérimentation, médiation et représentations à travers la pratique de la reconstitution historique du Moyen Age

Abstract : Historical reenactment is a leisure practice which consists to re-create and bring to life a material environment related to a past situation. Since its beginning in the late 1960s, this activity has widely spread throughout Europe. Nowadays, historical reenactment plays an important part in the cultural and touristic activities in France, mixing animation and demonstration. Reenactors’ specific interest for the Middle Ages fits in with the second medieval revival, which translates as an increase of the medieval references in daily life. Despite the numerous questions about its practical and memorial aspects, this particular way to represent the past has been relatively ignored by academics. Some confuse reenactment with more festive forms of activity based on the past, others consider this practice as a subject of curiosity or distrust.This thesis proposes to study the medieval reenactors’ claim for historicity. In order to do so, it establishes a picture of the activity in France and explores its definition to help along its comprehension. It relies on three different case studies based on reconstructed artefacts used by reenactors. It then questions the material aspect of the activity through the reconstruction identity and the dynamics of re-creation. Finally, this work deals with the link between historical reenactment and memory, both as a transmission activity and as a discourse about the past.The historical and archaeological considerations of this thesis rely on an interdisciplinary methodology. The interviews conducted with 48 reenactors put their own conception at the very center of the study and allow us to question this living and present practice of the Middle Ages.
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Submitted on : Monday, September 14, 2020 - 1:09:17 PM
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Martin Bostal. L'Histoire face à l'histoire vivante : expérimentation, médiation et représentations à travers la pratique de la reconstitution historique du Moyen Age. Histoire. Normandie Université, 2020. Français. ⟨NNT : 2020NORMC004⟩. ⟨tel-02930239⟩

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