Rights of Man: Being an Answer to Mr. Burke's Attack on the French Revolution / Edition 1

Rights of Man: Being an Answer to Mr. Burke's Attack on the French Revolution / Edition 1

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by Thomas Paine
     
 

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ISBN-10: 087975379X

ISBN-13: 9780879753795

Pub. Date: 02/28/1987

Publisher: Prometheus Books

Written in part as a theoretical reply to the stodgy conservatism of Edmund Burke's Reflections on the French Revolution (1790), Paine's Rights of Man (1791-92) sets forth a manifesto of popular democratic rule in the established tradition of John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. In it Paine offers a discussion of the nature of political man and proceeds to

Overview

Written in part as a theoretical reply to the stodgy conservatism of Edmund Burke's Reflections on the French Revolution (1790), Paine's Rights of Man (1791-92) sets forth a manifesto of popular democratic rule in the established tradition of John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. In it Paine offers a discussion of the nature of political man and proceeds to encourage the grass-roots revolutionary movements that seek to analyze critically and, where necessary, reform or replace social and political institutions, many of which tend only to repress those whom they were initially designed to serve.

Paine's enthusiasm, courage, and boundless commitment to reason are the intellectual rapiers that strike impressive blows for the defense of freedom and for the self-determination of all persons. His dedication to liberty is not so blind as to endorse reform uncritically.

In Part II of Rights of Man Paine does set himself against those who would rebel for the mere sake of rebellion. Revolution must contain within its being not only the displacement of the previous regime but also a rationally formulated alternative that will meet the needs of the people.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780879753795
Publisher:
Prometheus Books
Publication date:
02/28/1987
Series:
Great Books in Philosophy
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
188
Product dimensions:
5.37(w) x 8.33(h) x 0.43(d)

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The Rights of Man 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
CharlesSage More than 1 year ago
While Paine's goal was to defend the French Revolution as it took place, he also provides, perhaps unwittingly, a treatise on natural rights that governments should and must respect if they are to have any legitimacy. He also covers what it means to be a government and where the true power lies. A great plain-language text that is still relevant today, Rights of Man is a must read for anyone interested in some of the theory behind the Constitutional debates in our own country 200+ years ago.
Guest More than 1 year ago
One might assume that a book on political philosophy promises to be a rather dry read, but, aside from a foray into English tax reform in Part Two, this is largely not the case for Rights of Man. Paine's work remains immenitely readable. It was fascinating to read the case for so many of the central principles of American democracy. Many of these principles, including democracy, political equality, liberty, and the separation of church and state we accept as given, and hardly take the time to examine theri foundation. Paine is writing in a time when these ideas were actively being debated.
donrawfulguy More than 1 year ago
HAVING DIFFICULTY STAYING WITH THIS BOOK
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In short, freedom isn't free.
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