LES FILMS D'ICI, ARTE FRANCE
German, English, French
TV, DVD, NON-THEATRICAL, INTERNET, VOD
Discover the history of European peasants, from the 6th century to the present day, in a four-part series that travels the European countryside following the traces of its hidden history, which has long remained unwritten.
From the sixth to the twentieth century, most of the European population was peasants. In other words, peasant history can be read as the history of Europe itself. However, because their culture and historical tradition was oral, most of the peasant history is unknown. The dominant ones were the only ones to leave written traces and they spoke about peasants hardly ever. There are many descriptions of fields and harvests, but the peasants remained invisible – like if the wheat grew by itself. On very few occasions, they appeared in written stories but always from the point of view of the masters. They were described as a wild and uncultivated mass that should not be educated because it would prevent them from working the earth. Today, the contemporary historians’ perspective sheds a new light on the history of the rural world to see the peasants no longer as passive objects but as the autonomous actors of their own history.