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Rights of Man, Common Sense, and Other Political Writings (Oxford World's Classics) [Paperback]

Thomas Paine , Mark Philp
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

13 Nov 2008 Oxford World's Classics
'An army of principles will penetrate where an army of soldiers cannot ...it will march on the horizon of the world and it will conquer.' Thomas Paine was the first international revolutionary. His Common Sense (1776) was the most widely read pamphlet of the American Revolution; his Rights of Man (1791-2) was the most famous defence of the French Revolution and sent out a clarion call for revolution throughout the world. He paid the price for his principles: he was outlawed in Britain, narrowly escaped execution in France, and was villified as an atheist and a Jacobin on his return to America. Paine loathed the unnatural inequalities fostered by the hereditary and monarchical systems. He believed that government must be by and for the people and must limit itself to the protection of their natural rights. But he was not a libertarian: from a commitment to natural rights he generated one of the first blueprints for a welfare state, combining a liberal order of civil rights with egalitarian constraints. This collection brings together Paine's most powerful political writings from the American and French revolutions in the first fully annotated edition of these works. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.

Frequently Bought Together

Rights of Man, Common Sense, and Other Political Writings (Oxford World's Classics) + Reflections on the Revolution in France (Oxford World's Classics) + On Liberty and Other Essays (Oxford World's Classics)
Price For All Three: 17.41

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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks; New Ed. / edition (13 Nov 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019953800X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199538003
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 96,848 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful, accessible, political writing 9 Oct 2011
By Roman Clodia TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Tom Paine's Rights of Man, written in two parts (1791 & 1792), was a response to Edmund Burke's criticisms of the French Revolution. It's an optimistic work, looking forward to the ongoing development, both moral and political, of mankind, and the eradication of 'ignorance'. A combination of idealism and something more prosaic, it calls for democratic government by and for the people, for the greater good, one which limits itself to the support and defence of man's natural rights of liberty, equality, freedom of conscience and freedom of speech.

More or less self-educated, Paine's writing is powerful, passionate and accessible, making it no surprise that he was a best-selling pamphlet author in his time. Today, he is hailed as the originator of the idea of human rights - but his understanding of what this means is a far cry from our contemporary usage where, seemingly, everything is a 'right' from decent school dinners to designer shoes and handabgs. Paine, importantly, explores not just rights, but also the duties and responsibilities of the citizen.

It is noticeable that Paine is completely uninterested in the idea of women's suffrage and the gendering of rights, a marked absence in his texts which serves to slightly delimit his democratic ideal.

This Oxford edition has an introductory essay and notes that make it good for the novice or student.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Political Combo! 8 Mar 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Was looking for all of these titles and was delighted to find then all in this paper back. Grrrreat stuff.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book 18 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very good book that displays Paine off extremely well and shows what his political writings and opinions were during the 18th Century.
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29 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The cornerstone of modern human rights... 20 Mar 2006
Format:Paperback
Paine's work and life is the embodiment of human rights - he was exiled from England - fled to USA where he helped with the constitution - he was invited to France to help the new revolutionary constitution of 1789. He is a colossus in modern world history and his value can never be estimated high enough. A remarkable man who desired very simple but unattainable things - decent treatment for all. Paine's Declaration is a must for any student of politics or just anyone who cares about their fellow human beings...
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Important work 6 April 2013
By Brendan
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The content of the book is perfect. The size of the print is tiny and hard to read - I did not expect this. If the print was larger & readable this would be perfect. I'm not happy about this and it should be 'flagged up' in the description. SOmething like - 'you need a magnifying glass to read this'. Sorry I am disappointed in this.
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