The Great Demarcation

By Rafe Blaufarb,

Book cover of The Great Demarcation: The French Revolution and the Invention of Modern Property

Book description

What does it mean to own something? What sorts of things can be owned, and what cannot? How does one relinquish ownership? What are the boundaries between private and public property? Over the course of a decade, the French Revolution grappled with these questions. Punctuated by false starts, contingencies, and…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Great Demarcation as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

The French revolutionaries not only transformed property, they disentangled it from public power, creating a distinction between a private realm and a public one and between state and society. Blaufarb shows that at stake was much more and much more complex than historians have thought. He argues that without this multiple demarcation, free elections would have been impossible and universal human rights could not have been defined.    

From Wim's list on the Age of Revolutions.

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