Renowned historian Natalie Zemon Davis, celebrated for her research on marginalized historical figures, has passed away at 94 due to cancer on October 21, 2023.
Natalie Zemon Davis Death and Obituary
Natalie Zemon Davis, a highly respected historian known for her work on marginalized individuals in history, passed away at the age of 94 due to cancer. She died at her home in Toronto, as confirmed by her son, Aaron Davis. Throughout her career, Davis made significant contributions to the field of history by studying the lives of peasants, forgotten women, and border crossers, among others.
A Legacy of Unforgettable Stories
Her most famous work, “The Return of Martin Guerre,” explored the intriguing story of a 16th-century peasant who impersonated another man, and her historical insights deeply influenced the discipline. She also authored books on topics such as pardon tales, 17th-century women, and gift-giving in 16th-century France.
Her research extended to outsiders and border-crossers worldwide. Professor Davis’s passing marks the end of a remarkable career, leaving behind a legacy of scholarship and dedication to the study of history.
Who Was Natalie Zemon Davis?
Natalie Zemon Davis was a Canadian-American historian. She held teaching positions at the University of Toronto, focusing on history and anthropology. Initially, her research centered on France, but over time, she expanded her interests to cover various regions, including Europe, North America, and the Caribbean. For instance, her book “Trickster Travels” (2006) explored Italy, Spain, Morocco, North Africa, and West Africa through the eyes of Leo Africanus and his pioneering geography.
Her works have been widely translated into multiple languages, with her most famous book, “The Return of Martin Guerre,” available in twenty-two translations. Natalie Zemon Davis achieved significant recognition, serving as the second female president of the American Historical Association and receiving accolades such as the Holberg International Memorial Prize, National Humanities Medal, and the title of Companion of the Order of Canada.
|Full Name||Natalie Zemon Davis|
|Birth Date||November 8, 1928|
|Birth Place||Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
|Death Date||October 21, 2023|
|Age at Death||94|
|Place of Death||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
Natalie Zemon Davis Age
Natalie Zemon Davis was 94 years old at the time of death. Natalie Zemon Davis was born on November 8, 1928, and she passed away on October 21, 2023. Natalie Zemon Davis was born in Detroit, Michigan, to a middle-class Jewish family. Although her research didn’t primarily focus on Jewish topics, she attributed her intellectual journey partly to her Jewish background.
She attended Cranbrook Kingswood School and pursued her education at several institutions, including Smith College, Radcliffe College, Harvard University, and the University of Michigan, where she earned her Ph.D. in 1959. In 1948, she married Chandler Davis. However, their lives were challenging during the period of the Red Scare in the United States. Her husband lost his job as a professor in Michigan, and in the 1960s, the family relocated to Canada, settling in Toronto with their three children.
Natalie Zemon Davis Career
Natalie Zemon Davis was deeply interested in social and cultural history, particularly the lives of people often overlooked by historians. She used a wide range of sources like legal records, plays, tax documents, and more to piece together historical narratives. She was a strong advocate for interdisciplinary history, blending it with anthropology, ethnography, and literary theory.
In her book “Society and Culture in Early Modern France,” she explored the lives of artisans and peasants during the Protestant Reformation, studying their festivals, uprisings, and the influence of printing on their beliefs. Her well-known work, “The Return of Martin Guerre,” examined the case of a 16th-century imposter to understand how peasants perceived personal identity.
Davis also delved into stories people told to obtain pardons for homicide in 16th-century France in “Fiction in the Archives.” In “Women on the Margins,” she analyzed the autobiographies of three 17th-century women of different religions. She further explored the concept of gifts and bribes in the 16th century in “The Gift in Sixteenth-Century France.” Her book “Trickster Travels” looked at the life of a North African Muslim who lived as a Christian in Italy after being kidnapped by Christian pirates.
What Happened to Natalie Zemon Davis?
Natalie Zemon Davis, a renowned historian, passed away at the age of 94 in her Toronto home. She died from cancer, as confirmed by her son, Aaron Davis. She was well-known for her groundbreaking work in history, particularly for her research on marginalized individuals like peasants and forgotten women.
Her most famous book, “The Return of Martin Guerre,” explored a 16th-century peasant’s story who assumed another’s identity. Her legacy in historical research and contributions to the field will be remembered.
How Did Natalie Zemon Davis Die?
Natalie Zemon Davis passed away at the age of 94 due to cancer. Her son, Aaron Davis, confirmed the cause of her death. Natalie Zemon Davis, a respected historian, left behind a significant legacy in the field of history with her research on marginalized figures and her innovative approach to historical studies.
Natalie Zemon Davis Death and Obituary – FAQs
1. How did Natalie Zemon Davis pass away?
Natalie Zemon Davis passed away at the age of 94 due to cancer on October 21, 2023.
2. Who was Natalie Zemon Davis?
Natalie Zemon Davis was a highly respected historian known for her extensive work in social and cultural history. She was renowned for her research on often-overlooked individuals in history.
3. When and where was Natalie Zemon Davis born?
Natalie Zemon Davis was born in Detroit, Michigan, on November 8, 1928.
4. What contributions did Natalie Zemon Davis make to the field of women’s history and gender studies?
She played a pivotal role in the study of the history of women and gender. She co-founded one of the first courses on this subject in North America with Jill Ker Conway.
5. What was Natalie Zemon Davis’ age at the time of her passing?
Natalie Zemon Davis’ age was 94 at the time of her passing.
In conclusion, the world has lost a remarkable historian, Natalie Zemon Davis, whose contributions to the understanding of marginalized historical figures have left an indelible mark on the field of history. Her legacy will continue to inspire and inform generations of historians and scholars to come.