Cassirer, Thomas. “Awareness of the
City in the Encyclopédie.”
Journal of the History of Ideas, vol. 24, no. 3, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1963, pp. 387–96. JSTOR, JSTOR, doi:10.2307/2708214.
Cassirer’s article on the city discusses Encyclopédie articles relating to architecture and modern opinions regarding improvements to cities (especially Paris) on which there was a large debate. Cassirer opens with an analysis of Diderot’s interests and ideas regarding the current architecture in France but notes that Diderot did not contribute any articles on the subject. The main focus of the article is to assess the novelty of the treatment of architecture in the Encyclopédie, especially the contributions of the well-known architect Jacques-François Blondel and, after his departure from the project, the faithful Chevalier de Jaucourt, who, while not an architect, was educated enough to describe cities. Additionally, Cassirer adds the perspective of the Physiocrats, specifically François Quesnay, and how their focus on urbanization and economic reforms related to the critiques of the city. Comparing to other encyclopedias of the time, Cassirer notices that the Encyclopédie develops a unique awareness of modern changes that is not present elsewhere while remaining “essentially conservative.”
Country of Publication: United States
Main Classification: Architecture, Urbanization
7/9/2020: Created page.