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Le commun peut-il tenir dans un porc ? Conflits ordinaires autour de la propriété des biens des âmes en Espagne au XVIIIe siècle

Abstract : The "pig of souls" is a common practice throughout Southern Europe in the Old Regime which consists in collectively feeding a pig before putting it into lottery to apply its product to masses for the souls of the dead. Ethnographic studies based on the contemporary surviveances of this phenomenon have placed it on the side of religious beliefs, community rites and syncretism between popular religion and Christianity. Based on a small number of trials kept in the archives of Spanish Navarre, this article aims to counterbalance this reading by seeking to highlight the political dimension of this practice. It appears that the question of the ownership of pork, as a property consecrated to souls and therefore considered inalienable, is at the heart of conflicts between parish priests and local magistrates. Far from being an irenic practice, the pig of souls crystallizes a struggle between local actors who seek to build their authority over the community by demonstrating their legitimacy to administrate the goods destined to the dead. By studying the ownership claims of the various actors, this article analyses the ways in which the notions of "public", "sacred" and "common" have been in competition in rural communities of Old Regime. Depending on the status assigned to the pig, different conceptions of the locality, its territory and its membership confront each other.
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https://hal-amu.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01727882
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Submitted on : Friday, March 9, 2018 - 4:14:10 PM
Last modification on : Friday, November 9, 2018 - 3:54:30 PM

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Thomas Glesener. Le commun peut-il tenir dans un porc ? Conflits ordinaires autour de la propriété des biens des âmes en Espagne au XVIIIe siècle. Politix, De Boeck Supérieur, 2017, pp.53-78. ⟨hal-01727882⟩

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