This book presents an overview of Jean–Jacques Rousseau's work from a political science perspective. Was Rousseau — the great theorist of the French Revolution—really a conservative? The text argues that the author of ‘The Social Contract’ was a constitutionalist much closer to Madison, Montesquieu, and Locke than to revolutionaries. Outlining his profound opposition to Godless materialism and revolutionary change, this book finds parallels between Rousseau and Burke, as well as showing that Rousseau developed the first modern theory of nationalism. It presents an integrated political analysis of Rousseau's educational, ethical, religious and political writings.
This article describes the powerplay around the recent discovery (summer 2015) of
eighteenth-century Jewish graves in the French city of Lyon. Prior to the French
Revolution, Jews had no right to have their own cemeteries, and the corpses of the
deceased were buried in the basement of the local catholic hospital, the Hôtel- Dieu. In
recent years this centrally located building was completely renovated and converted into a
retail complex selling luxury brands. The discovery and subsequent identification of the
graves – and of some human remains – led to a complex confrontation between various
actors: archaeologists, employed either by the municipality or by the state; religious
authorities (mostly Lyons chief rabbi); the municipality itself; the private construction
companies involved; direct descendants of some of the Jews buried in the hospital‘s
basement; as well as the local media. The question of what to do with the graves took
centre stage, and while exhumations were favoured by both archaeologists and the
representatives of the families, the chief rabbi – supported by the construction companies
– proved reluctant to exhume, for religious reasons. In the first part of his article the
author details the origins of this Jewish funerary place and current knowledge about it.
He then goes on to analyse what was at stake in the long negotiations, arguing that the
memory of the Holocaust played a role in the attitude of many of the parties involved. By
way of conclusion he considers the decision not to exhume the graves and elaborates on the
reasons why this led to some dissatisfaction.
, Hanoveranians, Saxons, and so forth.
Following the FrenchRevolution, the concept of the state was modified
to include a particular kind of state: the nation-state. This meant that it
was now the goal of people who identified with one another – whether
because of geography, language, religion, history, or culture – to form
a state which included this distinct group of people. This led to the rise
of nationalism, which generally replaced religion as the major focus of
common identity. Napoleon had manipulated national feelings to great
personal advantage, and the monarchical
The French human sciences and the crafting of modern subjectivity,
the inaugural lecture of his anatomy course at the rebuilt Hôtel-Dieu on the ‘Influence of the FrenchRevolution on public health’. Petit believed in the healing effects of the Revolution: rather than emphasising his mental or physical suffering at the hands of the revolutionary forces, he used his medical training to highlight what he regarded as the positive political and therapeutic aspects of fear and terror. The first and most necessary function of political revolution, according to Petit, was radically to change the existing social and political habits of the
In May 1958, and four years into the Algerian War of Independence, a revolt again appropriated the revolutionary and republican symbolism of the French Revolution by seizing power through a Committee of Public Safety. This book explores why a repressive colonial system that had for over a century maintained the material and intellectual backwardness of Algerian women now turned to an extensive programme of 'emancipation'. After a brief background sketch of the situation of Algerian women during the post-war decade, it discusses the various factors contributed to the emergence of the first significant women's organisations in the main urban centres. It was only after the outbreak of the rebellion in 1954 and the arrival of many hundreds of wives of army officers that the model of female interventionism became dramatically activated. The French military intervention in Algeria during 1954-1962 derived its force from the Orientalist current in European colonialism and also seemed to foreshadow the revival of global Islamophobia after 1979 and the eventual moves to 'liberate' Muslim societies by US-led neo-imperialism in Afghanistan and Iraq. For the women of Bordj Okhriss, as throughout Algeria, the French army represented a dangerous and powerful force associated with mass destruction, brutality and rape. The central contradiction facing the mobile socio-medical teams teams was how to gain the trust of Algerian women and to bring them social progress and emancipation when they themselves were part of an army that had destroyed their villages and driven them into refugee camps.
French subsidies played a central role in European politics from Charles VIII’s
invasion of Italy in 1494 until the French Revolution. French kings attempted to
frustrate what they viewed as a Habsburg bid to pursue universal monarchy.
During the seventeenth century, the French monarchy would embrace the payment of
subsidies on a different scale than previously, using alliances in which
subsidies played a prominent role to pursue crucial aspects of royal policy.
Louis XIII made alliances promising subsidies to support the United Provinces’
resumed war against the king of Spain, and for the Danish, Swedish, and various
German princes to fight against the Holy Roman Emperor. Louis XIV continued some
of these subsidies and used subsidies as a tool in order to implement his own
politics. When Louis XIV appeared to Dutch and some English statesmen as
aspiring to Universal monarchy, the Dutch and particularly the English used the
tool of subsidies to frustrate the French monarch. During the eighteenth
century, principally the French and the British, but also the Austrians, used
subsidies to procure allies and attempt to maintain the balance of power. The
subsidy system prompted significant debates about the legal, political, and
moral implications, and was sometimes a source of political conflict between
competing power groupings within states. The book argues that participation in
the French system of subsidies neither necessarily accelerated nor necessarily
retarded state development; but such participation could undoubtedly change
political dynamics, the creation of institutions, and the form of states that
Often presented as a proto-totalitarian, Rousseau has traditionally been seen as an opponent of constitutionalism, checks and balances, and the separation of powers. Following a brief overview of the history of constitutionalism (from Moses to the French Revolution), this chapter compares Rousseau's political writings with the writings of constitutionalists like James Madison and Baron de Montesquieu. It shows that Rousseau shared the view that checks and balances are necessary for preventing the corruption of power and that he advocated a system of the separation of powers (and spoke highly of the British constitution. Yet, contrary to the other constitutionalists, Rousseau was a democrat. Whereas Montesquieu and Madison wanted the elites to check the elites (through the introduction of second chambers and constitutional courts), Rousseau emphasised that the executive ought to be checked by the people. He thus anticipated the political system that was instated by the American populists (including Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson). However, unlike other constitutionalists, Rousseau did not believe that institutions themselves would be sufficient for creating a good polity. He ceaselessly emphasised that political education was necessary for creating a good society.
By expanding the geographical scope of the history of violence and war, this
volume challenges both Western and state-centric narratives of the decline of
violence and its relationship to modernity. It highlights instead similarities
across early modernity in terms of representations, legitimations, applications
of, and motivations for violence. It seeks to integrate methodologies of the
study of violence into the history of war, thereby extending the historical
significance of both fields of research. Thirteen case studies outline the
myriad ways in which large-scale violence was understood and used by states and
non-state actors throughout the early modern period across Africa, Asia, the
Americas, the Atlantic, and Europe, demonstrating that it was far more complex
than would be suggested by simple narratives of conquest and resistance.
Moreover, key features of imperial violence apply equally to large-scale
violence within societies. As the authors argue, violence was a continuum,
ranging from small-scale, local actions to full-blown war. The latter was
privileged legally and increasingly associated with states during early
modernity, but its legitimacy was frequently contested and many of its violent
forms, such as raiding and destruction of buildings and crops, could be found in
activities not officially classed as war.
that the narrative form in itself is misleading in its wholeness. Though there is no real history for White, what people
experience as history they do not see as a narrative – and
necessarily so, since they do not have foreknowledge of
what is to come. History cannot therefore constitute a logical progression towards the present, still less towards an
ideal future state such as is implied by the term ‘democracy’
as it is currently used. In fact, in some complex situations,
such as the FrenchRevolution, narrative cannot easily cope
with the complexity of
Given the significant similarities and differences between the welfare states of Northern Europe and their reactions to the perceived 'refugee crisis' of 2015, the book focuses primarily on the three main cases of Denmark, Sweden and Germany. Placed in a wider Northern European context – and illustrated by those chapters that also discuss refugee experiences in Norway and the UK – the Danish, Swedish and German cases are the largest case studies of this edited volume. Thus, the book contributes to debates on the governance of non-citizens and the meaning of displacement, mobility and seeking asylum by providing interdisciplinary analyses of a largely overlooked region of the world, with two specific aims. First, we scrutinize the construction of the 2015 crisis as a response to the large influx of refugees, paying particular attention to the disciplinary discourses and bureaucratic structures that are associated with it. Second, we investigate refugees’ encounters with these bureaucratic structures and consider how these encounters shape hopes for building a new life after displacement. This allows us to show that the mobility of specific segments of the world’s population continues to be seen as a threat and a risk that has to be governed and controlled. Focusing on the Northern European context, our volume interrogates emerging policies and discourses as well as the lived experiences of bureaucratization from the perspective of individuals who find themselves the very objects of bureaucracies.