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on 24 October 2015
I have three Graphic Guides. The one on fractals is good, the subject is appropriate for a "graphic guide" because the illustrations complement the text admirably. The one on Camus is quite informative because it is possible to present his life and the plots of some of his major works in comic-book format. The same does not apply to the Graphic Guide on The Enlightment, unfortunately. The visual aspect adds very little, if anything, to the description, and at times it is even laughably superfluous, e.g. two drawings of the philosopher John Locke - on one page with the subtitle "with a wig" and on the next page with the subtitle "without his wig".

Apart from that, the text is badly-written and contains inaccuracies. For example:

- the first five pages explain that France was the main centre of the Enlightenment, then the next six or seven pages explain that Britain and the Dutch Republic were the main centres of the Enlightenment!
- on the page on William and Mary and the "Glorious Revolution", it is explained that the English parliament invited William to come to England and depose King James. This is incorrect. Seven "prominent Englishmen" invited William to come to England for that purpose. Also, on the same page, according to the author, the "Glorious Revolution" was "glorious" because it was bloodless. I thought it was "glorious" because of the important changes that came as a result of it, e.g. flight of King James, the creation of a constitutional monarchy in England?
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 12 September 2011
I bought this to mug up before a week-end I knew would include it (in all its manifestations) at some point; not wanting to appear totally vacant, I thought it would be idea. Tate Britain had a "two for the price of one" offer on a tall, well-stacked revolving tempter, so I selected the Enlightenment followed by Romanticism. Both were secreted up to the counter, paid for quickly and slipped promptly into the Billingham. (One does not want to be seen with "Guides to ... when one should be reading Hampson or O'Hara.)

Every page is a wealth of illustrative material, exceptionally well-drawn sketches to accompany the detailed text: Voltaire, Rousseau, John Locke, Newton, Paine, Jefferson and so many others. They are all there.

"The Enlightenment was an intellectual current that galvanised Europe during the course of the 18th Century. Centred in Paris." Sentence one gets straight to the point.

No puns about enlightenment, shedding light, and so on. Very informative, interesting and enjoyable book written in the unusual style of the series.
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on 9 January 2016
I am usually not keen on such cartoon-like drawing but I must say it is a wonderful little guide to a fascinating period. Within a double page for each of the entries, in a glance you can get a real global view/idea of the topics covered. Such a guide definitively helps memorizing actors of the period as well as the various concepts involved. A very clever enlightened guide.
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on 10 September 2012
Not bad. The book covers all the main moments and people which make up "The Enlightenment".
Only criticism is the graphics do take up a lot of room on some pages, and they don't really add much to the book. They just seem to take up space.
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VINE VOICEon 31 October 2005
One of the benefits of this series of books is that the illustrations give you an idea of what the protagonists looked like. From Krauze's drawings we learn that the thinkers of the Enlightenment were all misshapen freaks with a strong family resemblance.
The text, on the other hand, is very good. It gives the bare facts necessary for a framework for further study, plus some valuable insights such as placing the roots of the movement in England's Glorious Revolution of 1688. Names, dates and book titles are all here to give you a concise, solid introduction to the movement. There may well be better books out there at the price, covering similar ground, but this is a painless introduction, with enough facts to be worth keeping for reference. It would have been so much better if the illustrations had contributed rather than detracted.
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on 5 November 2015
As good as it gets. No politician, banker or social worker should be without it. The 'Les Miserable' music was good but has anyone read E.J. Hobsbawn on the French Revolution?
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on 23 June 2015
Excellent summary
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on 3 February 1999
Excellent artwork!
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