9 Results Visit ‘s Alfred Cobban Page and shop for all Alfred Cobban books. Check out pictures by Alfred Cobban and Gwynne Lewis. Some historians are born controversialists, others have controversy thrust upon them. Alfred Cobban belongs to the first group; in a lifetime of vigorous and witty. Professor Alfred Cobban in these lectures is attacking quite specifically the. ” interpretation” of the French Revolution which he attributes primarily to the.
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Return to Book Page. Alfred Cobban’s Social Interpretation of the French Revolution is one of the acknowledged classics of postwar historiography. Cobban saw the French Revolution altred central to the alffred narrative of modern history,” but provided a salutary corrective to prevalent social explanations of its origins and development.
A generation later this powerful historical intervention is n Alfred Cobban’s Social Interpretation of the French Revolution is one of the acknowledged classics of postwar historiography.
A generation later this powerful historical intervention is now reissued with a new introduction by the distinguished scholar Gwynne Lewis. It provides students with both a context for Cobban’s arguments, and assesses the course of Revolutionary studies in the wake of The Social Interpretation. Hardcoverpages. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Social Interpretation of the French Revolutionplease sign up.
Lists with This Book. Nov 13, Jonathan rated it really liked it Shelves: The founding document of French Revolution revisionism.
It’s a set of essays, not cobbna research project, but these are interesting essays.
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What is particularly striking is that Cobban calls not for a non-social interpretation, but for a new social interpretation; he actually accuses Marxist historians of trying to pass off political categories as social categories. He argues that the aristocracy and the sans-culottes, for example, were functioning as political interests rather as social classes dur The founding document of French Revolution revisionism.
He argues that the aristocracy and the sans-culottes, for example, were functioning as political interests rather as social classes during the Revolution. Socially, he claims, the Revolution was not a victory for a nonexistent industrial bourgeoisie, but it was a victory for a landowning class that cut across the old estates.
It is amusing to contrast Cobban’s approach with that of the postrevisionists; in some respects, Cobban has more in common with the Marxists than with the Furetians. Dec alfredd, Dominik rated it liked it Shelves: Even though Cobban is one of the founders of revisionism he still uses harsh materialistic approach which suits more to old-date marxist like Albert Mathiez.
Alfred Cobban | Revolvy
This is very well-considered and well-researched book. However, I found it to be somewhat misleading. Cobban seems to have no use for sociology, and to his credit, he states that he finds sociological interpretations of history to be both suspect and incorrect. He does not use sociology in the formation of his argument. He does, however, continually refer to the sociological interpretation of the French Revolution – that of a bourgeois class triumph over the ruling monarchy and arisotcratic clas This is very well-considered and well-researched book.
He does, however, continually refer to the sociological interpretation of the French Revolution – that of a bourgeois class triumph over the ruling monarchy and arisotcratic class – as he refutes it. Cobban refutes the sociological theory with factual events that contradict the theory.
The Social Interpretation of the French Revolution by Alfred Cobban
Technically, he is correct. The bourgeois and the nobles and the “peasants” for that matter were very ambiguous distinctions in practice in France at that time.
The stated aims of the causes of the revolution were not against class, nor were they an attempt to improve social mobility. Without sociology to frame issues like power over taxation, primarilyeconomy labor, in particularand individual and national identities, Cobban describes a very complex set of forces that almost defy categorization.
Yet power, economy, and identity are real and compelling agents of change throughout history. Sociology wouldn’t consider itself to be wrong or useless in identifying trends and developing theories; that’s what it’s for. The interpretation of the French Revolution is, I think, a different thing from the facts and actors of the French Revolution, so I felt that Cobban was treating sociology as a straw dog. The French Revolution was interpreted, at the time and in retrospect, by internal and international minds, and it was concluded that in fact power in France had shifted from absolute to republican, that economy had seen a new recognition of labor and capital rather than ownership as primary, and identity had become individual rather than communal feudal or religious during that period.
These trends were noted and imitated, and were polished to be agents of change throughout the Western world. Cobban’s book struck me as picky and somewhat irrelevant. Interpretation of the revolution seems to be more relevant than the factual details simply because the interpretation was monumentally influential on the formation of modern societies.
This makes the interpretation especially important and any contradictory facts of French history somewhat less so. Cobban’s book would be particularly useful for scholars of French history, but not terribly helpful in expanding or developing a working model of the changes in the West during the late 18th century and the dawn of the Industrial Age.
If nothing else, I found the title of this book to be amusing, since Cobban spends the entire length of the work refuting the idea that the French Revolution was a social revolution at all. History, Cobban argues, is far too complex to be broken down into single, overarching themes such as the theory that the revolution was a rebellion against feudalism. He makes compelling arguments, and I found myself agreeing with him more often than not.
The readability, it must be said, is extremely dry. Of course, I may be a bit biased, because I love history and reading history books.
That being said, there are many history studies out there that are both enjoyable to read and easy to grasp. Also, he often goes off on one or two sentence tangents that are made up wholly of French.
The points that Cobban makes are solid. Feb 09, Yoav Tirosh rated it it was amazing. Really enjoyed how Cobban masterfully twists the findings of former researchers and reveals that they themselves were baffled by the issues that he so eloquently raises. Conor Hodges rated it liked it Nov 30, Fiona O’Callaghan rated it really liked it Feb 26, Jenni Gunn rated it it was ok Dec 17, Cameron Willis rated it it was ok Dec 23, Alis rated it liked it Nov 12, Hanna rated it it was ok Feb 22, Scott Cooper rated it liked it May 19, John rated it really liked it Jun 16, Kevin rated it liked it Apr 07, Nov 25, Sanaullah added it.
I want to read this classic book on French Revolution. Fiona Stephenson rated it really liked it Feb 16, Wayne Parker rated it liked it Jan 10, Sam rated it liked it Jan 04, Justin rated it it was amazing Jul 25, Bryan rated it liked it Apr 18, Musashi rated it really liked it Jul 29, Elspeth rated it liked it Oct 04, Dick rated it really liked it Jun 01, Wafa Khan rated it really liked it Nov 03, Patrick rated it liked it Jul 13, Iris rated it liked it May 01, Jun 04, Dave rated it really liked it.
I actually enjoyed this author, even though it was for a research paper. The writing was well done. Dec 14, Anthony Zupancic rated it really liked it. Witness the destruction of the classic interpretation of the origins of the French revolution.
Tim rated it liked it Mar 07, Cristina rated it liked it Jan 29, There are no discussion topics on this book yet. He held a Rockefeller Fellowship for research in France and was a visiting professor at the University of Chicago and Harvard University. Books by Alfred Cobban. Trivia About The Social Interp No trivia or quizzes yet. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account.