A two-volume study of political thought from the late thirteenth to the end of the sixteenth century, the decisive period of transition from medieval to modern political theory. The work is intended to be both an introduction to the period for students, and a presentation and justification of a particular approach to the interpretation of historical texts. Quentin Skinner gives an outline account of all the principal texts of the period, discussing in turn the chief political writings of Dante, Marsiglio, Bartolus, Machiavelli, Erasmus and more, Luther and Calvin, Bodin and the Calvinist revolutionaries. But he also examines a very large number of lesser writers in order to explain the general social and intellectual context in which these leading theorists worked. He thus presents the history not as a procession of 'classic texts' but are more readily intelligible. He traces by this means the gradual emergence of the vocabulary of modern political thought, and in particular the crucial concept of the State.
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A two-volume study of political thought from the late 13th to the end of the 16th century, the decisive period of transition from medieval to modern political theory. The work is intended to be an introduction to the period as well as a presentation and justification of a particular approach to the interpretation of historical texts.About the Author:
Quentin Skinner is Barber Beaumont Professor of the Humanities at Queen Mary, University of London. He is a Fellow of the British Academy and the Academia Europaea, and a foreign member of many other learned societies. His scholarship, which is available in more than twenty languages, has won him numerous awards, including the Wolfson Prize for History in 1979 and a Balzan Prize in 2006. His books include The Foundations of Modern Political Thought (2 volumes, 1978), Reason and Rhetoric in the Philosophy of Hobbes (1996), Liberty Before Liberalism (1998), Hobbes and Republican Liberty (2008), Forensic Shakespeare (2014) and a three-volume collection of essays, Visions of Politics (2002).
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