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The Imaginary Invalid Historical Context

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Historical Context

The Bourgeoisie

During the mid-seventeenth century, a class of wealthy tradesmen and entrepreneurs who were not a part of the peasantry nor of the nobility began to increase in size in France. Known as the bourgeoisie, this increasingly powerful group lived in large towns, especially Paris, and largely worked as merchants, tradesmen, master-craftsmen, and professionals. Because of their financial power, the bourgeoisie were able to influence local politics and enjoy a distinguished legal status; they were able to extend these privileges to their peers and divide themselves from the laboring masses.

The bourgeoisie grew increasingly stable through the seventeenth century, and inspired a sense of belonging among its members. Business associations became personal and religious associations as bourgeois families met in church and attended the same social functions. Also, bourgeois father figures had complete control over their wives and daughters, who had almost no financial rights under the...

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This section contains 823 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Imaginary Invalid Study Guide
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The Imaginary Invalid from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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