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Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790)

by Edmund Burke

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,149195,057 (3.61)30
This new and up-to-date edition of a book that has been central to political philosophy, history, and revolutionary thought for two hundred years offers readers a dire warning of the consequences that follow the mismanagement of change. Written for a generation presented with challenges of terrible proportions--the Industrial, American, and French Revolutions, to name the most obvious--Burke's Reflections of the Revolution in France displays an acute awareness of how high political stakes can be, as well as a keen ability to set contemporary problems within a wider context of political theory.… (more)
  1. 20
    The Conservative Mind: From Burke to Eliot by Russell Kirk (Anonymous user)
  2. 10
    Considerations on France by Joseph de Maistre (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Great companion piece. Another conservative, and an admirer of Burke, though he wrote with quite a different temperament. Both very deep thinkers, but while Burke is more nuanced and grounded, de Maistre is dark, profound and metaphysical. I prefer 'Considerations' but both works are excellent.… (more)
  3. 00
    Edmund Burke and the Natural Law by Peter J. Stanlis (Anonymous user)

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» See also 30 mentions

English (18)  Spanish (1)  All languages (19)
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
I did not read Burke's words- I only read the introduction by JGA Pocock. This intro provides a thorough background to Burke's works and beliefs, as well as a general overview of the politics of that time period in England. ( )
  keithostertag | Jun 29, 2020 |
Edmund Burke, MP was not in favour of popular enthusiasms, and when they rise to actual violence, well that is beyond the pale. Even though there may well have been reasons for the uprising, there should not have been this unseemly tumult. When oppressed, the populace should be able to find some non-violent way of changing their condition. After all the English have managed to avoid all this fuss....Well, haven't we? Burke was a prescient Conservative, and saw that the /French were embarked on a road that would lead to violence, to finally dictatorship, and perhaps a deeper tyranny than before. Gradual improvement on an evolutionary course would serve the french better, but they are only Latins, and therefore, the worst can be expected. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Mar 9, 2020 |
I try to scrape all unfavorable reviews down to an absolute minimum of length, so here goes:

Burke thinks that the answer to everything is common sense, although his term for “common sense” was “prejudice”, something that undoubtedly did not get the approval of the PR department or indeed any sort of non-Protestant living in Britain at the time. But it seems to me like Burke relished a fight, so that was probably part of the appeal of calling common sense “prejudice”.

The trouble is real however, in that, as Plato and the philosophers point out, common sense, or simply what you assume, is often simply wrong. Burke I don’t think could overcome his contempt for philosophy long enough to form a coherent reply, so instead he just rambled on about how wrong they all always are. So it remains that common sense is not always helpful and that this is detrimental to Burke. “Blessed are you when you are persecuted” is not common sense, but old Edmund Burke seems to me to think that as long as he could muster up sufficient prejudice/common sense for those pesky non-Protestants then he would be in the clear.

That’s as directed and calm as I could get it.


It’s true that sometimes pre-Victorians are not negated by the nineteenth century—“the cause of progress in the Victorian Age”, I called it, “Catholic emancipation, popular monarchy”, etc.—I just don’t know exactly how relevant that is to Burke. He seemed to really come down on the side of authority—you can’t just “cashier” the government!—but sometimes today we seem to think that if we just cobble together a little mob we can change the law.

I add this out of some doubt of what I thought before, but I can only imagine if it makes the burden greater or less.
  smallself | May 25, 2019 |
  OberlinSWAP | Aug 1, 2015 |
  OberlinSWAP | Aug 1, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (37 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Edmund Burkeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Mahoney, Thomas H. D.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Brien, Conor CruiseIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dear Sir,
You are pleased to call again, and with some earnestness, for my thoughts on the late proceedings in France.
"It is now sixteen or seventeen years since I saw the queen of France, then the dauphiness, at Versailles. . . "
"The age of chivalry is gone."
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This is maintained as a separate work. Do not therefore combine to editions with other essays.
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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Yale University Press

2 editions of this book were published by Yale University Press.

Editions: 0300099797, 0300099789

Liberty Fund, Inc

2 editions of this book were published by Liberty Fund, Inc.

Editions: 086597165X, 0865971641

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