Praise for How Revolutionary Were the Bourgeois Revolutions?: "I was frankly pole-axed by this magnificent book. Davidson resets the entire debate on the character of revolutions: bourgeois, democratic and socialist. He's sending me, at least, back to the library."—Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums In this abridged edition of his magisterial How Revolutionary Were the Bourgeois Revolutions? Neil Davidson expertly distills his theoretical and historical insights about the nature of revolutions, making them available for general readers. Neil Davidson currently lectures in Sociology with the School of Social and Political Science at the University of Glasgow.
Praise for How Revolutionary Were the Bourgeois Revolutions?: "I was frankly pole-axed by this magnificent book. Davidson resets the entire debate on the character of revolutions: bourgeois, democratic, and socialist. He's sending me, at least, back to the library."?Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums "This is, quite simply, the finest book of its kind."?Tony McKenna, Marx and Philosophy Review of Books Ranging from the uselessness of the concept of "ethnicity" to the difference between the class politics of the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, these essays focus on the two great themes of nation and revolution, and the third which links them: the state. Neil Davidson is the author of The Origins of Scottish Nationhood (2000), Discovering the Scottish Revolution (2003), for which he was awarded the Deutscher Prize, and How Revolutionary Were the Bourgeois Revolutions? (2012). Davidson lectures in sociology in the School of Political and Social Science at the University of Glasgow, Scotland.
In the last generation the classic Marxist interpretation of the French Revolution has been challenged by the so-called revisionist school. The Marxist view that the Revolution was a bourgeois and capitalist revolution has been questioned by Anglo-Saxon revisionists like Alfred Cobban and William Doyle as well as a French school of criticism headed by Francois Furet. Today revisionism is the dominant interpretation of the Revolution both in the academic world and among the educated public. Against this conception, this book reasserts the view that the Revolution - the capital event of the modern age - was indeed a capitalist and bourgeois revolution. Based on an analysis of the latest historical scholarship as well as on knowledge of Marxist theories of the transition from feudalism to capitalism, the work confutes the main arguments and contentions of the revisionist school while laying out a narrative of the causes and unfolding of the Revolution from the eighteenth century to the Napoleonic Age.
Bourdieusian Prospects considers the ongoing relevance of Bourdieu's social theory for contemporary social science. Breaking with the tendency to reflect on Bourdieu's legacies, it brings established and emergent scholars together to debate the futures of a specifically Bourdieusian sociology. Driven by a central leitmotif in Bourdieu’s oeuvre, namely, that his work not be blindly appropriated but actively interpreted, contributors to this volume set out to map the potentials of Bourdieusian inflected social science. While for many social scientists the empirical and theoretical developments of the twenty-first century mark a limit point of Bourdieusian social theory, this collection charts both how and why a Bourdieusian sociology has a future, which is crucial for the ongoing development and roll out of an engaged, relevant and critical social science.
Davidson explores classic themes in historical materialism as he explains: the moments of transition from the dominance of one mode of production to another; the process of social revolution which accompany these transitions; and the problem of nationalism, both as a theoretical challenge to Marxism's capacity for historical explanation and as a practical obstacle to socialist consciousness.
Neoliberal Scotland argues that far from passing Scotland by, as is so often claimed, neoliberalism has in fact become institutionalised there. As the mainstream political parties converge on market-friendly policies and business interests are equated with the public good, the Scottish population has become more and more distanced from the democratic process, to the extent that an increasing number now fail to vote in elections. This book details for the first time these negative effects of neoliberal policies on Scottish society and takes to task those academics and others who either defend the neoliberal order or refuse to recognise that it exists. Neoliberal Scotland represents both an intervention in contemporary debates about the condition of Scotland and a case study, of more general interest, of how neoliberalism has affected one of the “stateless nations” of the advanced West. Chapter One takes an overview of the origin and rise of neoliberalism in the developed world, arguing that it repudiates rather than continues the thought of Adam Smith and the Scottish Enlightenment. Part One addresses the fundamental issue of social class in Scotland over three chapters. Chapter Two attempts to locate the ruling class both internally and externally. Chapter Three explores the changing nature of working class membership and its collective experience. Chapter Four follows the working class into the workplace where heightened tensions in the state sector have provoked an increasingly militant response from trade unionists. Part Two engages with the broader impact of neoliberalism on Scottish society through a diverse series of studies. Chapter Five assesses claims by successive Scottish governments that they have been pursuing environmental justice. Chapter Six examines how Glasgow has been reconfigured as a classic example of the “neoliberal city”. Chapter Seven looks at another aspect of Glasgow, in this case as the main destination of Eastern European migrants who have arrived in Scotland through the international impact of neoliberal globalisation. Chapter Eight investigates the economic intrusion of private capital into the custodial network and the ideological emphasis on punishment as the main objective in sentencing. Chapter Nine is concerned with the Scottish manifestations of “the happiness industry”, showing how market-fundamentalist notions of individual responsibility now structure even the most seemingly innocuous attempts to resolve supposed attitudinal problems. Finally, Chapter Ten demonstrates that the limited extent to which devolved Scottish governments, particularly the present SNP administration, have been able to go beyond the boundaries of neoliberal orthodoxy has been a function of the peculiarities of party competition in Holyrood, rather than representing a fundamental disavowal of the existing order.
This book seeks to provide the most comprehensive and sustained engagement and critique of neo-Gramscian analyses available in the literature. In examining neo-Gramscian analyses in IR/IPE, the book engages with two fundamental concerns in international relations: (i) The question of historicity and (ii) The analysis of radical transformation.
Alfred Cobban's The Social Interpretation of the French Revolution is one of the acknowledged classics of post-war historiography. This 'revisionist' analysis of the French Revolution caused a furore on first publication in 1964, challenging as it did established orthodoxies during the crucial period of the Cold War. Cobban saw the French Revolution as central to the 'grand narrative of modern history', but provided a salutary corrective to many celebrated social explanations, determinist and otherwise, of its origins and development. A generation later this concise but powerful intervention was reissued in this 1999 edition with an introduction by Gwynne Lewis, providing students with both a context for Cobban's own arguments, and assessing the course of Revolutionary studies in the wake of The Social Interpretation. This book remains a handbook of revisionism for Anglo-Saxon scholars, and is essential reading for all students of French history at undergraduate level and above.
A well-written interpretive history of Russia from earliest times to today--a recounting of the story of Russia's past that is rich with insights into the nation's present torment. The author discusses Russia's strengths and weaknesses as a civilization, the dilemmas that have always confronted it, and the challenges posed by the contemporary effort to remake Russia. In ten chronological and thematic chapters, the author --describes the distinctive nature of Russia's experience as an Eastern civilization, of Europe, but not of the West; --evokes the ways in which Russia's culture, especially its rich literature, has both embodied and expressed the nation's ambivalent identity; --chronicles the periodic efforts of the Russian state, over three centuries, to catch up with the West without becoming Western; With grace and good sense, Ragsdale revisits the past not to explain, justify, or condemn, but to illuminate the present.