Paul Veyne

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Paul Veyne (born June 13, 1930 in Aix-en-Provence ) is a French (old) historian specializing in Roman history and is close to the École de Paris .


Paul Veyne studied at the École normal supérieure and was a member of the École française de Rome from 1955 to 1957, whereupon he worked as a professor in Aix-en-Provence . On the epistemology of history he published the provocative essay Comment on écrit l'histoire in 1971 . Against the predominant quantitative orientation of French historiography, he favored history as “true narrative”, thereby emphasizing the narrative aspects of scientific history. However, his monograph Le pain et le cirque (1976) showed that he adhered to the methods of the Annales school . The book describes the practice of giving ( euergetism ) in the anthropological tradition of Marcel Mauss . His everyday Roman story (1985) also became famous, as the prelude to a comprehensive history of private life published by Philippe Ariès and Georges Duby . In it he tells the Roman life "from the cradle to the grave", Peter Brown and Michel Rouche continue with the late antiquity and the early Middle Ages.

Since 1976 he has taught Roman history at the Collège de France as a professor with the support of Raymond Aron . But Aron became his opponent because he wasn't grateful enough. Veyne was close friends with Michel Foucault . In 1978 he published two essays in one book, a new version of the 1970 essay and “ Foucault révolutionne l'histoire ” to show Foucault's turn away from narrative to “practice”, how historical objects “arise” through science. In 1999 Veyne retired. He wrote a book about Foucault in 2008.

In 1972 he received the French Academy Award for the best essay. In 2014 Veyne was awarded the Prix ​​Femina Essai for his autobiography Et dans l'éternité je ne m'ennuierai pas .


Works in German

  • Historiography. And what it is not . Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 1990 (edition suhrkamp NF 1472), ISBN 3-518-11472-7 (French: Comment on écrit l'histoire, essai d'épistémologie . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1971).
  • Foucault: Revolutionizing History . Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 1992 (edition suhrkamp NF 702), ISBN 3-518-11702-5 (French: Foucault révolutionne l'histoire . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1978).
  • Bread and games. Social power and political rule in ancient times. Campus-Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 1988, ISBN 3-593-33964-1 ; Paperback dtv, Munich 1994, ISBN 3-423-04639-2 . (French: Le pain et le cirque. Sociologie historique d'un pluralisme politique . Coll. Point Histoire, Éditions du Seuil, 1976.)
  • From history . Merve-Verlag, Berlin 1986, ISBN 3-88396-046-2 (collection of articles).
  • Did the Greeks believe in their myths? Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 1987 (edition suhrkamp 1226), ISBN 3-518-11226-0 (French: Les Grecs ont-ils cru à leurs mythes? Essai sur l'imagination constituante . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1983).
  • The originality of the unknown. For a different history. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1988, ISBN 3-596-27408-7 (French: L'Inventaire des différences: leçon inaugurale au Collège de France . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1976).
  • (with Christian Meier :) Did the Greeks know democracy? 2 studies . Wagenbach, Berlin 1988, ISBN 3-8031-5102-3 .
  • (Ed. :) History of private life . Vol. 1. From the Roman Empire to the Byzantine Empire . Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 1989, ISBN 3-10-033610-0 . (French: Histoire de la vie privée . vol. 1: De l'Empire romain à l'an mil . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1985.)
  • Wisdom and altruism. An introduction to Seneca's philosophy . Fischer-Taschenbuch-Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 1993, ISBN 3-596-11473-X .
  • Roman society . Fink, Munich 1995, ISBN 3-7705-2932-4 . (Collection of articles; French: La société romaine . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1991.)
  • The Greco-Roman Religion - Cult, Piety and Morality . Reclam, Stuttgart 2008. ISBN 978-3-15-010621-1 . (French: Chapter Culte, piété et morale dans le paganisme gréco-romain in: L'Empire gréco-romain . Édition du Seuil, coll. Des travaux, Paris 2005, p.  419–543.)
  • When our world became Christian (312–394). Rise of a sect to a world power . C. H. Beck, Munich 2008. ISBN 978-3-406-57064-3 . (French: Quand notre monde est devenu chrétien (312–394) . Editions Albin Michel, Paris 2007.)
  • Foucault. The philosopher as a samurai . Reclam, Stuttgart 2009. ISBN 978-3-15-010684-6 . (French: Foucault. Sa pensée, sa personne. Albin Michel, Paris 2008.)
  • The art of late antiquity. History of a style change . Reclam, Stuttgart 2009, ISBN 978-3-15-010664-8 . (French: Chapter Pourquoi l'art gréco-romain at-il pris fin? In: L'Empire gréco-romain . Édition du Seuil, coll. Des travaux, Paris 2005, p.  749–865.)
  • Palmyra. Requiem for a city , Beck, Munich 2016, ISBN 978-3-406-69237-6 .
  • The secret of the fresco. The Mystery Villa in Pompeii. Translated from French by Anna Leube and Wolf Heinrich Leube, Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft / Philipp von Zabern, Darmstadt 2018, ISBN 9783805351768 .

Works in French

  • L'élégie érotique romaine: l'amour, la poésie et l'Occident . Éditions du Seuil, Paris 1983.
  • René Char en ses poèmes , Paris, Gallimard, “NRF essais”, 1990. ISBN 2-07-071974-X ; Paperback edition in the "Tel" collection, 1995. ISBN 2-07-074102-8
  • (Ed. :) Sénèque, Entretiens; Lettres à Lucilius . Editions Robert Laffont, Paris 1993.
  • Le quotidien et l'intéressant. Entretiens avec Catherine Darbo-Peschanski. Hachette, Paris 1997.
  • (with François Lissarrague and Françoise Frontisi-Ducroux) Les mystères du gynécée . Gallimard, Paris 1998.
  • Sexe et pouvoir à Rome . Tallandier, Paris 2005 (collection of articles).
  • L'empire gréco-romain . Le Seuil, Paris 2005.
  • Michel Foucault . Sa pensée, sa personne. Paris, Albin Michel, Sciences humaines, 2008. ISBN 2-226-17914-3 .


  • Et dans l'éternité je ne m'ennuierai pas. Souvenirs. Albin Michel, Paris 2015.


  • Herwig Gottwald: Paul Veyne's theory of myths as postmodern Hellenocentrism. In: Ders .: Traces of the Myth in Modern German-Language Literature. Theoretical models and case studies. Würzburg 2007, pp. 97-103.
  • Michel Matter: On the subject of “Quand notre monde est devenu chrétien” (312–394) by Paul Veyne. In: Revue d'histoire et de philosophie religieuses 88 (2008) 55–69.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Information Philosophy, 3/2010, p. 97.