"A fierce absolutist, a furious theocrat . . . the champion of the hardest, narrowest, and most inflexible dogmatism . . . part learned doctor, part inquisitor, part executioner." Thus did Émile Faguet describe Joseph-Marie de Maistre (1753-1821) in his 1899 history of nineteenth-century thought. This view of the influential thinker as a reactionary has, with little variation, held sway ever since. In The French Idea of History, Carolina Armenteros recovers a very different figure, one with a far more subtle understanding of, and response to, the events of his day.Maistre emerges from this deeply learned book as the crucial bridge between the Enlightenment and the historicized thought of the nineteenth century. Armenteros demonstrates that Maistre inaugurated a specifically French way of thinking about past, present, and future that held sway not only among conservative political theorists but also among intellectuals generally considered to belong to the left, particularly the Utopian Socialists.
pt. 1. Joseph de Maistre and the idea of history, 1794-1820: The statistical beginnings of historical thought : Joseph de Maistre against Jean-Jacques Rousseau, 1794-96 ; Maistrian epistemology and pedagogy in historical perspective ; A Europeanist theory of history : Du pape ; Redemption by suffering : social violence and historical development in the Éclaircissement sur les sacrifices ; Returning the universe to God : time, will, and reason in Les soirées de Saint-Pétersbourg pt. 2. Historical thought in France, 1798-1845: The new truth of historical knowledge : liberty, order, and the rise of the social fact, 1797-1848 ; Historical progress and the logic of sacrifice, 1822-54 ; The metapolitics of history : socialism, positivism, and tradition, 1820-48.
Bibliographic Level Mode of Issuance: Monograph Includes bibliographical references and index.