Reform and Revolution in France: The Politics of Transition, 1774-1791

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This textbook has been written to help teachers and students to pilot their way through the enormous and ever expanding literature on the French Revolution. The author makes a conscious effort to combine social and political interpretations of the origins of the Revolution and offers a synthesis which takes full account of current debates. He also seeks to restore the Revolution to its domestic environment. Notwithstanding the powerful contemporary myth of rupture, the author argues that the dramatic events of 1789 need to be considered alongside the reform achievements of Bourbon absolute monarchy. The result is a new account of the gestation of the Revolution which is both up-to-date and satisfying in its range of vision.