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Look Inside The Enlightenment Past

The Enlightenment Past
Reconstructing Eighteenth-Century French Thought


  • Date Published: March 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521175296

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About the Authors
  • Over the last two hundred years the theories and ideals of the Enlightenment have come to be viewed as the foundation of modern Western political and intellectual culture. Particularly in France they have played a fundamental role in the development of national identity. In a series of richly contextualised readings Daniel Brewer examines the cultural construction of the Enlightenment in France from the eighteenth century to the present day. He examines a range of important Enlightenment texts, explores the ways in which they defined their modernising project, and analyses the cultural and political uses to which they have been put by scholars, writers and intellectuals. This book presents a significant advance in the field of Enlightenment studies, in an important and timely reassessment of the heritage and continued relevance of Enlightenment ideals.

    • Was the first English-language history of the Enlightenment's cultural afterlife to be published
    • Traces the importance of Enlightenment ideas to present-day France
    • Builds on recent work in a number of fields, including philosophy, historiography and cultural critique
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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2011
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521175296
    • length: 270 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.4kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Producing Enlightenment history
    2. The event of Enlightenment: beginnings
    3. The subject of Enlightenment: constructing philosophers, writing intellectuals
    4. Designing the past: thinking history through Montesquieu
    5. Literature and the making of Revolutionary history
    6. Inventing a literary past
    7. Commemorating Enlightenment: bringing out the dead, belatedly
    8. The Voltaire effect
    9. Reading among the ruins
    10. Epilogue

  • Author

    Daniel Brewer, University of Minnesota

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