The Enlightenment


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The movement called the Enlightenment swept through 18th-century Europe, forever changing the political, religious, and educational landscape. Margaret Jacob has assembled selections by important figures of the period, including Locke, Rousseau, Mary Wortley Montagu, Denis Diderot, and Moses Mendelssohn. She covers the movement's lengthy evolution in a comprehensive introduction, which establishes the issues central to understanding the documents and provides important background on the political and social debates of the period. All documents are preceded by headnotes.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 225 pages
  • 137.16 x 205.74 x 10.16mm | 249.47g
  • St Martin's Press
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • 14 illustrations, chronology, bibliography, index
  • 0312179979
  • 9780312179977
  • 578,500

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Author Information

MARGARET C. JACOB is Professor of History at the University of California, Los Angeles. She has published widely on science, religion, freemasonry and the origins of the Industrial Revolution. A past Guggenheim and Fulbright fellow, Jacob has received grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Her first book The Newtonians and the English Revolution (1976) won the Gottschalk Prize from the American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies, of which she was president from 1997-1998

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Review quote

'This is an excellent collection. The clear and elegant introduction usefully discusses many current topics of interest regarding the Enlightenment, including the role of religion; the cultural processes of criticism; the social and gender status of the 'enlightened', and attitudes towards non-European societies and peoples. The well-chosen documents, combined with the author's fine introduction, should make this a very effective text for use in the classroom.' - John Marshall, Johns Hopkins University 'Jacob's introduction provides an original understanding of the Enlightenment, in particular through its exceptionally international treatment that explores England, France and deeper into the continent. The author is also very successful at merging more traditional intellectual history with newer approaches.The selection of documents gives the reader an excellent sense of the range of issues that absorbed the philosophers.' - Jack R. Censer, George Mason University

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