El terror. Los años de la guillotina David Andress

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703 pages


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El terror. Los años de la guillotina  by  David Andress

El terror. Los años de la guillotina by David Andress
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For two hundred years, the Terror has haunted the imagination of the West. The descent of the French Revolution from rapturous liberation into an orgy of apparently pointless bloodletting has been the focus of countless reflections on the oftenMoreFor two hundred years, the Terror has haunted the imagination of the West. The descent of the French Revolution from rapturous liberation into an orgy of apparently pointless bloodletting has been the focus of countless reflections on the often malignant nature of humanity and the folly of revolution.David Andress, a leading historian of the French Revolution, presents a radically different account of the Terror.

In a remarkably vivid and page-turning work of history, he transports the reader from the pitched battles on the streets of Paris to the royal familys escape through secret passageways in the Tuileries palace, and across the landscape of the tragic last years of the Revolution. The violence, he shows, was a result of dogmatic and fundamentalist thinking: dreadful decisions were made by groups of people who believed they were still fighting for freedom but whose survival was threatened by famine, external war, and counter-revolutionaries within the fledging new state.

Urgent questions emerge from Andresss trenchant reassessment: When is it right to arbitrarily detain those suspected of subversion? When does an earnest patriotism become the rationale for slaughter?Combining startling narrative power and bold insight, The Terror is written with verve and exceptional pace. It is a dramatic new interpretation of the French Revolution that draws troubling parallels with todays political and religious dundamentalism.A vivid and powerful narrative of the years 1789-95...

The narrative is dense yet fast-moving, from the storming of the Bastille to the execution of King Louis XVI to the paranoid politics of the National Convention. --DAVID GILMOUR, THE New York Times Book ReviewIn such alarming times, it is important to understand what exactly terror is, how it works politically, and what, if anything, can be done to combat it. The historian David Andress has made a serious contribution to this central subject of our times with an accessible account of the way terror overtook the French Revolution at the end of the eighteenth century.

--RUTH SCURR, The Times (London)DAVID ANDRESS, a leading historian of the French Revolution, is Reader in Modern European History at the University of Portsmouth and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.



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