Read Revolutionary Ideas: An Intellectual History of the French Revolution from the Rights of Man to Robespierre by Jonathan I. Israel Free Online
Book Title: Revolutionary Ideas: An Intellectual History of the French Revolution from the Rights of Man to Robespierre|
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 28.10 MB
v The author of the book: Jonathan I. Israel
Edition: Princeton University Press
Date of issue: March 23rd 2014
ISBN 13: 9780691151724
City - Country: No data
Read full description of the books Revolutionary Ideas: An Intellectual History of the French Revolution from the Rights of Man to Robespierre:Historians of the French Revolution used to take for granted what was also obvious to its contemporary observers--that the Revolution was caused by the radical ideas of the Enlightenment. Yet in recent decades scholars have argued that the Revolution was brought about by social forces, politics, economics, or culture--almost anything but abstract notions like liberty or equality. In Revolutionary Ideas, one of the world's leading historians of the Enlightenment restores the Revolution's intellectual history to its rightful central role. Drawing widely on primary sources, Jonathan Israel shows how the Revolution was set in motion by radical eighteenth-century doctrines, how these ideas divided revolutionary leaders into vehemently opposed ideological blocs, and how these clashes drove the turning points of the Revolution.
Revolutionary Ideas demonstrates that the Revolution was really three different revolutions vying for supremacy--a conflict between constitutional monarchists such as Lafayette who advocated moderate Enlightenment ideas; democratic republicans allied to Tom Paine who fought for Radical Enlightenment ideas; and authoritarian populists, such as Robespierre, who violently rejected key Enlightenment ideas and should ultimately be seen as Counter-Enlightenment figures. The book tells how the fierce rivalry between these groups shaped the course of the Revolution, from the Declaration of Rights, through liberal monarchism and democratic republicanism, to the Terror and the Post-Thermidor reaction.
In this compelling account, the French Revolution stands once again as a culmination of the emancipatory and democratic ideals of the Enlightenment. That it ended in the Terror represented a betrayal of those ideas--not their fulfillment.
Read information about the authorJonathan Irvine Israel is a British writer on Dutch history, the Age of Enlightenment and European Jews. Israel was appointed as Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the School of Historical Studies at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey, in January 2001. He was previously Professor of Dutch History and Institutions at the University of London.
In recent years, Israel has focused his attention on a multi-volume history of the Age of Enlightenment. He contrasts two camps. The "radical Enlightenment" founded on a rationalist materialism first articulated by Spinoza. Standing in opposition was a "moderate Enlightenment" which he sees as profoundly weakened by its belief in God. In Israel’s highly controversial interpretation, the radical Enlightenment is the main source of the modern idea of freedom. He contends that the moderate Enlightenment, including Locke, Voltaire, Montesquieu, and Rousseau, made no real contribution to the campaign against superstition and ignorance.
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