The French Revolution

George Rudé

Phoenix 1988
A book review by Danny Yee © 1994 http://dannyreviews.com/
Rather a lot has been written about the French Revolution, and it is still one of the more controversial events of modern history. So Rudé's inclusion of a brief historiographical outline in his work is particularly welcome; he takes a fairly "orthodox" approach himself, but he discusses alternative viewpoints and makes it clear where he is coming from. The core of The French Revolution is a fairly straightforward narrative account, starting around 1775 and going through to 1815, which covers social and economic changes as well as the more dramatic political and military events. The big questions are not avoided; the book opens with a section titled "Why Was There a Revolution in France?" and the closing chapters discuss the effects of the Revolution on Europe and the world and the history of the Revolutionary tradition within France. The French Revolution is a fun read, and easily the most accessible of the scholarly works on the Revolution I have read.

August 1994

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Related reviews:
- books by George Rudé
- books about France + French history
- more modern history
%T The French Revolution
%A Rudé, George
%I Phoenix
%D 1988
%O paperback, maps, chronology, glossary, bibliography, index
%G ISBN 1857991265
%P 224pp