Ancien Regime and the French Revolution

Overview

A powerful new translation of de Tocqueville's influential look at the origins of modern France

In this penetrating study, Alexis de Tocqueville considers the French Revolution in the context of France's history. de Tocqueville worried that although the revolutionary spirit was still alive and well, liberty was no longer its primary objective. Just as the first Republic had fallen to Napoleon and the second had succumbed to his nephew Napoleon III, he feared that all future ...

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Overview

A powerful new translation of de Tocqueville's influential look at the origins of modern France

In this penetrating study, Alexis de Tocqueville considers the French Revolution in the context of France's history. de Tocqueville worried that although the revolutionary spirit was still alive and well, liberty was no longer its primary objective. Just as the first Republic had fallen to Napoleon and the second had succumbed to his nephew Napoleon III, he feared that all future revolutions might experience the same fate, forever imperiling the development of democracy in France.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780141441641
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/29/2008
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 588,175
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Alexis de Tocqueville was born in 1805 to a noble French family that had survived the French Revolution. His father gained some political power under the reign of the Bourbons, and after the July Revolution of 1830, the family was exiled along with the king. Tocqueville, then twenty-five years old, stayed in France, swearing allegiance to the new government. Shortly thereafter he and a friend, Gustave de Beaumont, sought and received a government assignment to study the prison system of the United States. They arrived in America in 1831. After extensive travels across the young nation, Tocqueville wrote Democracy in America (published in two volumes in 1835 and 1840). The publication of the first volume made Tocqueville a well-known figure, but he led a quiet life, accepting modest governmental posts, traveling around Europe, and marrying an Englishwoman. In 1848, Tocqueville once again rose to political prominence after a prescient speech that foretold of revolution. After serving through the massive upheavals and overthrows of government, Tocqueville retired from political life in 1849. Always weak in health, his lung disease grew progressively worse from that period on. Moving south several times on doctor’s recommendations, Tocqueville succumbed to death in 1859, in Cannes.

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Table of Contents

Chronology

Introduction

Further Reading

Translator's Note

The Ancien Regime and the French Revolution 1

Glossary 294

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