Joseph de Maistre (1753-1821) was an extraordinarily gifted and insightful commentator on foundational developments that have shaped our modern world. His reaction to the Enlightenment and the French Revolution, though hostile, was remarkably open and included innovative and still-valuable theorising about such human phenomena as violence and unreason. The political and theoretical issues he addressed continue to challenge us today. In Joseph de Maistre's Life, Thought, and Influence, leading Maistre scholars offer interpretations of his thought and make available in English recent French scholarship on his life and work. They provide a portrait of Maistre as a significant thinker in numerous fields, upsetting the image of him as a backward-looking "reactionary," a reinterpretation furthered by contemporary interest in Counter-Enlightenment thought in general. This book is a valuable resource, providing not only a cross-section of current Maistre scholarship but also notes and biographical suggestions for further study. Contributors include Owen Bradley, Jean-Louis Darcel, Jean Dinezet, Graeme Garrard, Richard A. Lebrun, Vera Miltchyna, Jean-Yves Pranchre, W. Jay Reedy, and Benjamin Thurston.
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