The Cambridge history of eighteenth-century political thought

Corporate Author: Cambridge University Press.
Other Authors: Goldie, Mark., Wokler, Robert, 1942-2006.
Format: Online Book
Language: English
Published: Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2006.
Series: Cambridge history of political thought.
Online Access: Online version
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Review by Choice Review

This is the fifth of the Cambridge series of reference works in political thought. This stout volume provides balanced and comprehensive coverage of major issues and themes found in the political thought of the European Enlightenment. The expertise of two dozen recognized scholars in eighteenth-century thought is brought to bear on this wide ranging and complex subject. Each essayist more or less follows agreed upon guidelines, lending the text a measure of coherence. The 24 essays are organized under six broad headings. These include: the ancient regime and its critics; the new light of reason; natural jurisprudence and the science of legislation; commerce, luxury, and political economy; the promotion of public happiness; and the Enlightenment and revolution. The editors also authored substantial chapters, Mark Goldie on the "English System of Liberty" and Robert Wokler on "Ideology and the Origins of Social Science." The volume provides a good illustration of common characteristics of the Enlightenment's thinkers, such as their zeal to systematize, bent to polemicize, drive to put theory into practice, and determination to politicize philosophical or theological ideas. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readership levels. C. A. Linden emeritus, George Washington University

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.