By Andress, David
In this miraculously compressed, incisive book David Andress argues that it was the peasantry of France who made and defended the Revolution of 1789. That the peasant revolution benefitted far more people, in more far reaching ways, than the revolution of lawyerly elites and urba...n radicals that has dominated our view of the revolutionary period. History has paid more attention to Robespierre, Danton and Bonaparte than it has to the millions of French peasants who were the first to rise up in 1789, and the most ardent in defending changes in land ownership and political rights. 'Those furthest from the centre rarely get their fair share of the light', Andress writes, and the peasants were patronised, reviled and often persecuted by urban elites for not following their lead. Andress's book reveals a rural world of conscious, hard-working people and their struggles to defend their ways of life and improve the lives of their children and communities.Read more
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David Andress is Professor of Modern History at the University of Portsmouth, and one of Britain's finest interpreters of the 18th and 19th centuries. His books include The French Revolution and the People (2004), The Terror (2005) and 1789 (2008). For Head of Zeus he has written a sharp polemic, Cultural Dementia: How the West Has Lost Its History and Risks Losing Everything Else - a book that analyses the rise of the National Front in France, Trump in the USA and the right-wing nationalists at the core of the Brexit project.
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