Thomas N. Bisson


On his book The Crisis of the Twelfth Century: Power, Lordship, and the Origins of European Government

Cover Interview of May 15, 2009

Editor’s note

Originally, this interview ran on the Rorotoko cover page under the headline

“Power in twelfth-century Europe was of lordship—not government, nor ‘feudalism.’”

We highlighted two quotes.

On the first page:

“The exercise of power for social purpose began in the western world only as the resolution of a prolonged crisis of power.”

On the second:

“To begin to think about power as ‘ours,’ not just as ‘mine,’ was new and progressive in the twelfth century.”