Rousseau and Revolution

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Rousseau and Revolution Rousseau and Revolution

by Will Durant

Genre: Nonfiction

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The Story of Civilization, with its tenth volume, Rousseau and Revolution. Around the towering and perplexing personality of Rousseau who set spinning the whirlpool of ideology, both Left and Right, the authors recreate in vivid narrative style the growth of eighteenth century intellectual, moral and political dissent, the summit and decline of autocratic rule, religious disenchantment and democratic stirrings, ""the role of genius in history, of man versus the mass and the state""--in short, that great and continuing debate of which we are now the troubled heirs. The gallery swells with figures as important as the star performer himself: Goethe, Johnson, Voltaire, Catherine and Frederick, Mozart, Kant, Reynolds. The military exploits, the elegance and corruption of court life, the diversity of cultural, economic, and social events, the prejudices and mores of the entire European scene--surely it is a measure of the Durants' comprehensive mastery that so vast a panorama has been handled with so many splendidly interwoven episodes, judicious portraits, and contemporary ramifications.
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