Abstract

Abstract:

This article situates the rhetoric of tree sap that ran through French revolutionary discourse within the broader cultural contexts of eighteenth-century arboriculture and economic, medical, and political theory. By focusing on the history of the French liberty trees, I argue that sap (variably imagined) both signified and materially constituted the hopes and future well-being of the nation. The sap metaphor also facilitated reflections on the republic's social cohesiveness and commitment to equality, and it helped the French envision the political and ethical contours of the citizen-gardener's role within the revolutionary state.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-315X
Print ISSN
0013-2586
Pages
pp. 409-427
Launched on MUSE
2020-04-17
Open Access
No
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