Reflections on the Revolution in France (Penguin Classics)

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Edmund Burke

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To make a revolution is to subvert the ancient state of our country; and no common reasons are called for to justify so violent a proceeding

Burkes seminal work was written during the early months of the French Revolution, and it predicted with uncanny accuracy many of its worst excesses, including the Reign of Terror. A scathing attack on the revolutions attitudes to existing institutions, property and religion, it makes a cogent case for upholding inherited rights and established customs, argues for piecemeal reform rather than revolutionary change and deplores the influence Burke feared the revolution might have in Britain. Reflections on the Revolution in France is now widely regarded as a classic statement of conservative political thought, and is one of the eighteenth centurys great works of political rhetoric.

Conor Cruise OBriens introduction examines the contemporary political situation in England and Ireland and its influence on Burkes point of view. He highlights Burkes brilliant grasp of social and political forces and discusses why the book has remained so significant for over two centuries.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.


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