The French Revolution - in a Nutshell

The French Revolution - in a Nutshell

CD-Audio In a Nutshell

By (author) Neil Wenborn, Read by Roy McMillan

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  • Publisher: NAXOS AUDIOBOOKS
  • Format: CD-Audio
  • Dimensions: 124mm x 142mm x 10mm | 82g
  • Publication date: 3 November 2009
  • Publication City/Country: Hong Kong
  • ISBN 10: 9626349867
  • ISBN 13: 9789626349861
  • Sales rank: 136,038

Product description

The fifth in the new Naxos AudioBooks series "In a Nutshell - The French Revolution" is a short and accessible introduction to one of the most important periods in European history. It brings vividly to life the implacable Robespierre, the frightened Marie Antoinette and the iconic image of the guillotine. But it also demonstrates the key role the Revolution played in the development of European politics.

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Review quote

'The bound captives drowned in holed boats in the Seine were just some of the thousands massacred during the years of the French Revolution. This detailed exposition shows how its ideals formed the basis of today's liberal democracies and how its excesses were a forerunner of 20th-century repressions.' - Rachel Redford, The Observer 'I approached The French Revolution - In a Nutshell unwillingly: it was the last of a pile of promising but soon disappointing titles that I had put in my car for sampling; it smacked of the schoolroom. How wrong I was. At the off Roy McMillan accurately predicted that all I knew about the French Revolution was derived from Baroness Orczy, A Tale of Two Cities and such famous images as Marat stabbed in his bath. His reading of Neil Wenborn's canter through the financial and social causes, its violent progress and its significance for democracy is enthralling.' - Christina Hardyment, The Times 'A gripping narrative of quite another kind is to be found in Neil Wenborn's The French Revolution - In a Nutshell. These cataclysmic events, beginning with the revelations of France's lavish national extravagance and iniquitous taxation system, the collapse of the monarchy and continuing through the eruption of political turmoil into riots, tribunals, terror, military dictatorship and war, are really the foundation of modern Europe. (What price UKIP?) The questions raised seem blindingly contemporary to us in the modern world - the relationship between citizen and state, liberty and law, idealism and the realms of the possible, political ends and means. Not very festive, you may think, but this would be a present to treasure whose value will not decline even after years of use.' - Robert Giddings, Tribune Magazine 'Between 1789 and 1799, 10 years of violent turmoil in France grew out of Europe's Enlightenment. After the pillars of power - the Catholic Church, the aristocracy, and the monarchy - fell, continued intramural conflicts stained the decade. In 1799, Napoleon assumed power in a coup and declared the revolution to be over. The author condenses this complex, controversial, and critical period into 'a nutshell,' or 75 minutes of audio. British narrator Roy McMillan aptly fits the performance bill with his impeccable French. He chooses a pace that is appropriate to delivering great quantities of abbreviated information while still allowing listeners time to absorb it. His performance succeeds in its succinct reporting of a consequential historical period, and one hopes it will whet the curiosity of those less familiar with these events, inspiring them to further exploration of these murderous times.' - J.A.H., AudioFile The former Chinese premier Zhou Enlai, the story goes, was once asked to comment on the significance of the French revolution. 'It is too early to say,' he replied. Happily for us Neil Wenborn is prepared not just to produce a vivid potted history of the political and social events that led to the storming of the Bastille on 14 July 1789 and the purges that followed in Robespierre's murderous reign of terror but also, unlike Zhou, to assess its longterm influences worldwide. Succinct, entertaining, thought-provoking - everything the perfect history lesson should be. - Sue Arnold, The Guardian