'An excellent book … his real achievement lies in digging below the surface to present a tapestry of French life … the overall sweep and depth of the book is masterly' Jonathan Fenby, The Times
NINETEENTH-CENTURY FRANCE was one of the world's great cultural beacons, renowned for its dazzling literature, philosophy, art, poetry and technology. Yet this was also a tumultuous century of political anarchy and bloodshed, where each generation of the French Revolution's 'children' would experience their own wars, revolutions and terrors.
From soldiers to priests, from peasants to Communards, from feminists to literary figures such as Victor Hugo and Honoré de Balzac, Robert Gildea's brilliant new history explores every aspect of these rapidly changing times, and the people who lived through them.
'Magisterial … a spectacular new study … teeming with anecdotes, gems and intriguing details' Síofra Pierse, Irish Times
'A fine new history … far-ranging, original and very enjoyable' Virginia Rounding, Daily Telegraph
'Elegantly written … vivid and constantly enriched by a gallery of portraits … The author's sympathetic understanding of the French shines through his prose' Sudhir Hazareesingh, Literary Review