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The bridge of Avignon: a society of builders (12th-15th century)

Simone Balossino

Why build a bridge over the Rhône in Avignon? For centuries, scholars and historians have been studying the Pont d'Avignon by tracing the traces of its legendary founder, the young shepherd Bénézet, by following the difficulties of the Work and the hospital which were associated with it since the Middle Ages, and even by telling the epic of the Rhône which, majestic and unpredictable, passed under its arches and often carried them away by its waves. But the history of the Pont d'Avignon through the centuries cannot be understood without also observing the collective project of the city that financed it or the conflicts of the powers, local or foreign, that coveted it. It is through this story, which is all political, that the complexity of this emblematic work emerges even more vividly and explains the existence and tenacity of the legends that still surround the most famous broken bridge in the world today.

The author

Simone Balossino is a historian and lecturer at the University of Avignon. His work focuses on the political and social history of the cities of southern France in the Middle Ages. Among his works we recall I podestà sulle sponde del Rodano. Arles e Avignone nei secoli XII e XIIIRome, Viella, 2015 and At the margins of the communal world: centres of collective power and public palaces from the Alps to the MediterraneanAll'insegna del Giglio, 2020. He was team director of the ANR PAVAGE. The Avignon Bridge: archaeology, history, geomorphology, environment, 3D reconstruction.

Publication date: 08 July 2021

Collection Passion du patrimoine
248 pages - Illustrations - Bibliography
20 €
ISBN 978-2-35768-137-8
Presentation, excerpts on the EUA Research Notebook.

Water: an introduction to a scarce resource

Christophe Emblanch

Christophe Emblanch, lecturer in hydrogeology and director of the Science, Technology and Sport Department of Avignon University, is a passionate person who likes to share his knowledge and analyses. This is why he regularly participates in public events where he presents his research and knowledge, in a style always oriented towards the general public.

This book is a continuation of that commitment. In a hundred or so pages, it presents an ordered series of knowledge concerning water (the resource, the basins, the needs, the footprint, its economy...), while showing the perils linked to the too numerous wastes. The conclusion, generous and optimistic, calls for cultivating "our dreams rather than our illusions".

The author

Christophe Emblanch is a lecturer in hydrogeology and director of the Science, Technology and Sport Department at Avignon University. He is a member of the UMR EMMAH (Mediterranean Environment and Agrohydrosystems Modelling) and regularly publishes in the main English-language scientific journals and participates in numerous international conferences.

Publication date: 14 October 2021

Collection MidiSciences
96 pages - Illustrations - Bibliography
7 €
ISBN 978-2-35768-139-2

Assault on the Palace: Avignon and its Papal Past (2nd expanded edition)

Paul Payan

Whether in tourist guides or on road signs, Avignon is often referred to as the "city of the popes". If the period of the medieval papacy continues to mark the cultural identity of the people of Avignon, it should nevertheless be remembered that the relationship between the city and the pontiff has not always been idyllic...

Far from trivializing the city's history, Paul Payan's sharp eye uncovers the secrets hidden between the stones of the Popes' Palace in this book, the result of a series of lectures given at the Théâtre du Chêne Noir. Torn from the tourist slogans and postcards, the city's pontifical past is finally returned to the inhabitants, specialists and all those who are curious.

Freed from their heavy mythical cloak, the building and the community that populated its halls are challenged as simple witnesses. By retracing a part of history and civilization, the Palace leads us to rediscover our "brothers of the past".

This second edition is enriched by a selection of the author's thirty or so images, reproductions of period paintings or contemporary photographs, which allow for an even more sensitive immersion in the papal era of Avignon.

The author

Paul Payan is a lecturer at Avignon University and a member of the CIHAM (History, Archaeology and Literature of the Medieval Christian and Muslim Worlds - UMR 5648). A specialist in Western medieval history, he regularly gives conferences to share his knowledge with the general public.
When the first edition of the book was published, he gave an interview in the an interview in the Carnet de recherche des EUA.

Publication date: 14 October 2021

Collection Passion du patrimoine
150 pages - Illustrations - Bibliography
17 €
ISBN 978-2-35768-139-2

Date of update July 5, 2021