Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

Read more

#THE 51%

World War One: The war that changed women’s lives

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Ségolène Royal goes for green

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

A look back at some of the Observers' best stories

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults: Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds' (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults: Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds'

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola death toll tops 700

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Dozens of youths trampled to death on Conakry beach

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Renault's women drivers ad deemed sexist

Read more

  • Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

    Read more

  • Live: Israeli soldier feared captured, ceasefire 'over'

    Read more

  • Ugandan court strikes down anti-gay legislation

    Read more

  • Regional summit to tackle deadly Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • French hospital to open wine bar for terminally ill patients

    Read more

  • €2.5 million in cocaine ‘disappears’ from Paris police HQ

    Read more

  • Appeal court keeps French rogue trader Kerviel in jail

    Read more

  • Air France ground workers to strike on August 2

    Read more

  • Interactive: France’s new plan to counter jihadism in Africa

    Read more

  • Ukrainian army suffers losses in separatist attack

    Read more

  • Dozens killed and injured in Taiwan gas blast

    Read more

  • Argentinian markets plummet following default

    Read more

  • French Jews speak of growing fear in Paris amid Gaza conflict

    Read more

  • Video: Inside Hamas ‘terror’ tunnels in Gaza

    Read more

  • Sierra Leone declares state of emergency over spread of Ebola

    Read more

Culture

Prominent French historian Jacques Le Goff dies at 90

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-04-01

Jacques Le Goff, one of the most influential medieval historians of modern times, died on Tuesday in a Paris hospital at the age of 90.

Over the course of his lengthy career in academia and public broadcasting, Le Goff has been credited with changing the way people looked at the Middle Ages, construing it as a period that laid the foundations for modern Western civilisation rather than a time of darkness.

He was a leading proponent of what has come to be known as “New History”—the shift in historical research from emphasis on political figures and events to mentality and anthropology.

Outside the world of academia, Le Goff hosted a weekly history programme on France Culture public radio and even acted as a historical advisor on films, including the 1986 adaption of Umberto Eco’s “The Name of the Rose,” which starred Sean Connery.

Born January 1, 1924 in Toulon, Le Goff studied in top tier schools before taking a teaching position and eventually heading up the Paris-based School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS).

He was editor-in-chief of the highly influential journal “Annales”—the bible of historians who stress long-term social research.

His many books included works on intellectuals of the Middle Age, bankers and merchants, a biography of King Louis IX and a seminal work on the introduction of the concept of Purgatory.

“By transforming our view of the Middle Ages, you have changed the way we deal with history,” Le Goff was told when awarded the prestigious Dr. A.H. Heineken prize for history in 2004, whose jury described him as “without doubt the most influential French historian alive today”.

As a young researcher in Prague, Le Goff witnessed the Communist takeover of Czechoslovakia in 1948 and throughout his life he was a frequent commentator on current events, as a committed left-winger, agnostic and pro-European.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)

 

Date created : 2014-04-01

COMMENT(S)