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He makes the most horrendous flippant generalizations and does nothing to back up his position other than an implied “if you don’t agree with me, you must be one of those radical Christians destroying our world. Philosophy and the Making of Modernity, and Enlightenment Contested: I get the sense that the links between the Enlightenment and the Revolution are complex and ambivalent, probably not ideally suited to a short summary chapter such as this.

I wish books like this were around when I was a philo Superb account of radical French Enlightenment intellectuals, Diderot and d’Holbach, whom the author believes history has forgotten, partly because they were bold enough to be atheists.

It wasn’t clear to me whether I should view it as a.

I thought the conceit of a big dinner party was an interesting one to tell what amounts to a group biography, and certainly helped keep things both entertaining and engaging.

While he maintained an appreciation of the Encyclopaedists, he preferred to distance himself from their atheism, and remained a Deist. Indiana University Press,p. Or maybe just skip over the introduction. This book is a spectacular introduction to some of the major personalities of an era that gave birth not only to the French and American Revolutions, but also to most of modern science and philosophy.

I figured, though, hey! In the government revoked its license, but the book continued to be produced illegally. The Forgotten Radicalism of the European Enlightenment. For the first two-thirds of the book, Blom lets his sizeable bias against Rousseau get in the way of an otherwise much more objective piece of intellectual history. It aims to revivify Diderot and his circle from obscurity, while at the same time harshly attacking other thinkers whose stars have been more ascendant since the French Revolution: Want to Read Currently Reading Read.


Or perhaps I need to find a salon dedicated to that discussion thread instead Aug 26, Gert de Cooman rated it it was amazing. It gives you a sense of what the French Enlightenment was really about and who the major players were, and makes a compelling case that those players were not who we are traditionally taught they were.

A Wicked Company: The Forgotten Radicalism of the European Enlightenment

I was moved to consider the unintentional ways I simplify gents understanding of the belief in rationalism, atheism, and science within this milieu. Materialism is supported by more scientific evidence than ever but it is widely disparaged and regarded as a dangerous doctrine.

But if you’re determined, keep your eyes open.

This insight alone should be the principle of all morality. Soilid, but hard to recommend. Highly disappointed with this book. This is explained clearly and at length, in a highly sympathetic and appealing style.

Philipp Blom · OverDrive (Rakuten OverDrive): eBooks, audiobooks and videos for libraries

Denis Diderot was one of my heroes since reading “La Religieuse” “The Nun” in High School French class the novel depicts a convent which is presided over by a sadistic lesbian. At the table at Grandval, chez Holbach, they would sit down to delectable poulets a la Reine, cold pate, and raspberry gelee they actually give a menu from one of the gatherings in the book and talk about the philosophy, religion largely their intense dislike thereofand groundbreaking science.

Blom concentrates on the Paris salon of Pilipp d’Holbach, which dominated philosophical and political discourse in Europe, and arguably the world, in the midC. It was a huge publishing success: Thankfully, he gets off the horse periodically and gives the reader some excellent intellectual history with very clear expositions of different thinkers’ philosophies and comparisons between them. The tragedy of Rousseau, and ultimately of the French Revolution, was that the most advanced thinkers which the Enlightenment produced could not, by sheer force of intellect, discover a means of ensuring equality among the citizens of the First Republic.


If you’re thinking about giving this book a try, my best advice to you: Aan de hand van vooral de overgeleverde briefwisseling tussen peligrossa protagonisten schetst Blomm de strapatsen van Diderot, Rousseau en co waarbij geen enkele anekdote overbodig overkomt bij de lezer en de filosofen al snel pilipp voor komen als complexe personen van vlees en bloed.

It is clear from the outset whom the author likes and dislikes, and whom he wants us to like. The latter still blo, with the political status quo and entertained deism.

Holbach enrolled at the University of Leiden in where he became a friend of John Wilkes, who went on to become a notorious Prligrosa radical.

Dat hij door haar lang onderhouden werd is een leuk detail dat blijft hangen. He is a professional historian who studied at Vienna and Oxford with a focus on eighteenth-century intellectual history.

The weird thing is that his dislike of Voltaire and Rousseau his hobby h I have quite mixed feelings about this book. These philosophes as they were also known were daring and audacious.