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The Virtues of Violence – Democracy Against Disintegration in Modern France - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Virtues of Violence: Democracy Against Disintegration in Modern France

Kevin Duong


This book uncovers an unfamiliar vision of political violence that nonetheless prevailed in modern French thought: that through “redemptive violence” the people would not rend but regenerate society. It homes in on invocations of popular redemptive violence across four historical moments in France specifically: the French Revolution, Algeria’s colonization, the Paris Commune, and the eve of the first World War. In each of these cases, the book reveals how French thinkers experienced democratization as social disintegration. Yet, before such danger, they also proclaimed that virtuous violence b ... More

Keywords: political violence, democracy, revolution, France, popular sovereignty, terror, democratic theory, political theory, republicanism, French republicanism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9780190058418
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2020 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190058418.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Kevin Duong, author
Assistant Professor of Politics, University of Virginia