Europe 1600-1789 by Anthony F. Upton
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Europe 1600-1789
By Anthony F. Upton

Europe 1600-1789

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Format: Paperback

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Europe 1600-1789 by Anthony F. Upton

Book Description

This new history of a formative period of Europe's past provides both a concise review of the main developments and an interpretation that hinges on the gradual erosion of the ancien regime, 'the world we have lost', and the generation of forces destined to transform it into the world we live in. One result of these processes was a growing differential in mentality and life experience between the labouring masses of peasants and labourers, who still lived in traditional ways in isolated self-sustaining rural communities in 1789, and the world of the ruling elites, whose mental horizons were changing significantly, and who remained traditional mainly in their desire to retain the hierarchical structures of society, which secured their exclusive control. In 1600 both elites and commoners shared a common Christian culture, but the Reformation, by creating a state of religious pluralism, struck at the foundations of order in society. The response of the elites, after a failed attempt to reimpose religious uniformity through war, had been a slow development of the centralized, bureaucratic, and military state, and adoption of the rationalist ideas of the Enlightenment.But the experiences of the 'enlightened despots' at implementing rational reform, while retaining the traditional structures of authority and privilege intact, showed that the ancien regime was incapable of modernising itself. It took the violence of the French Revolution to do that.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780340663387
ISBN-10: 0340663383
Format: Paperback
(234mm x 155mm x 35mm)
Pages: 448
Imprint: Hodder Arnold
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publish Date: 2-Feb-2001
Country of Publication: United Kingdom


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Author Biography - Anthony F. Upton

Anthony Upton is Professor Emeritus of Modern History at the University of St. Andrews.

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