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Louis XIV and Absolutism: A Brief Study with Documents (Bedford Series in History & Culture) Hardcover – 1 Feb 2000


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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Review

'Beik has selected documents that offer an appropriate balance between elite and popular views and experiences of Louis XIV's absolute monarchy, and between the center of power and the periphery. The translations are consistently lively, and the topics should generate some spirited discussion. The general introduction, the chapter introductions, the headnotes, and the editorial interjections are well crafted and have just the right touch of informality to appeal to undergraduate students' - Albert N. Hamscher, Kansas State University

'William Beik supplies us with a comprehensive. yet accessible array of documents that illustrate the complex dynamics of political power during the reign of Louis XIV. These primary sources lead us away from the trite simplifications connected to 'absolutism' and provide us with a much more accurate view of the actual day-to-day functioning of the French government in this period. This collection will appeal to a broad range of students at different levels and provides instructions with an excellent new cache of transalted documents on early modern France' - Sarah Chapman, Oakland University

'This book offers a wide range of valuable documents on the critical issues of seventeenth-century French history. Professor Beik has done a fine job of translating documents he chose judiciously and has also provided insightful commentaries. This volume is bound to captivate students and lays the foundation for stimulating class discussions' - John Hurt, University of Delaware --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

WILLIAM BEIK is professor of history at Emory University. An authority on the social and institutional history of seventeenth-century France, he has written numerous books and articles. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


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Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars 7 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive book with interseting documents 2 Dec. 2011
By Katie G - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This books is not a traditional textbook. The author tells you about a certain situation or topic than provides primary documents from various sources showing different sides to that situation (Reformation in the Provinces, Religion, Managing France, The Aristocracy, etc). It's nice to get the eyewitness accounts of the events instead of just having the author tell you about them.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Insightful 28 Nov. 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to purchase this text for a history course and found it very insightful and surprisingly readable! The included documents really give a great sense of the epoch.
4.0 out of 5 stars I would recommend this book 8 July 2016
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The central argument seems to be that - absolutism didn’t exist in practice. Which I didn't consider particularly remarkable argument, as often theory falls short of practice.
It appears that the notional loyalty to King (as an absolute ruler) was already established. The book instead charts the efforts to overcome the practical obstacle to the Kings theoretical authority.
There is a focus on the early reforms of Louis XIV.
With original documents the quality of the evidence is very strong, and has incidental value on other points. Notably among the original document was Louise XIV letter to his son on ruling. For someone seeking an academic understanding of the Ancien Regime, I would recommend this book.

For a casual reading, most original documents are easy to read letters/diary entries about some interesting event the author wishes to provide insight into.
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite alot of info in here 9 Dec. 2012
By WeirdStudent - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I used this book for a class in college and wrote an essay on it. It is full of primary documents that provide a lot of information on Louis XIV.
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Absolutism documents 3 Dec. 2007
By goldenboydude46 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The books is very informative adn filled with useful documents along with Beik's own historical information. Very dry read, hard to get through
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