Montesquieu : Let There Be Enlightenment


Édité et traduit par Philip STEWART (Duke University, North Carolina)
Cambridge, Cambridge University Press
janvier 2023, 262 p.
ISBN 978-1-00-924909-6
e-ISBN 9781009249072
DOI 10.1017/9781009249072

Traduction de Catherine Volpilhac-Auger, Montesquieu, Gallimard, 2017.

Since the last biography of Montesquieu in English (Shackleton, Oxford, 1961) Montesquieu scholarship has been entirely renewed, culminating in a critical edition of his complete works in twenty-two volumes that is nearing completion. Since 1998, this new edition of the complete works has considerably modified what was known about Montesquieu and his procedures, eliciting new translations and further studies. Additionally, several thousand manuscript pages were made public in 1994 and continue to generate further scholarly inquiry.

The author, Catherine Volpilhac-Auger, of this compact biography, originally published by Gallimard 2017, is the director of the critical edition of the works and the most qualified scholar of Montesquieu. At once an introduction to Montesquieu’s thought and a synthesis of current knowledge about his life and work, this book is full of insights and revised judgements about Montesquieu and how his political philosophy helped thrust Enlightenment onto the European agenda.

Introduction ; 1. Monsieur de La Brède (1689–1705) ; 2. From La Brède to Secondat de Montesquieu (1705–1713) ; 3. From Secondat to Montesquieu (1713–1721) ; 4. Taking Wing (1722–1727) ; 5. Europe on the horizon (1728–1731) ; 6. A new departure (1731–1738) ; 7. ‘A labor of twenty years’ (1736–1748) ; 8. The march to glory (1749–1755) ; 9. The final battle.

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