Lesson 1 (from Book 1 of Essays: Chapter 1 (Introductory Materials))
Book 1 of Essays: Chapter 1 (Introductory Materials)
In Montaigne's time, Europe was dominated by Feudalism, a system of government that involves strict hierarchies and loyalties. This system also tends make land ownership and national borders somewhat abstract. This lesson is about Feudalism. Students should understand this system and how it affected Montaigne's nation.
1) Class Discussion: What is Feudalism? How does it work? Why was it necessary in medieval Europe? What is strange about how it tends to distribute territory? What causes this oddity?
2) Small Group Discussion: What was Montaigne's place in the feudal system of France? Why was he made mayor of Bordeaux? How was his loyalty to the King related to his place in Feudal society, and what dangers did this expose him to?
3) Journal Entry: Imagine yourself living in the feudal society of France. What social tier would you prefer to be born into...
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