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Michael

McGreat

Beverly Hills, California, United States | Member Since 2010

9
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  • 1 reviews
  • 11 ratings
  • 166 titles in library
  • 9 purchased in 2014
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  • The French Revolution, Volume 1: The Bastille

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Thomas Carlyle
    • Narrated By Robert Bethune
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    Thomas Carlyle's The French Revolution is a landmark of literary history. Conceived not as a dry recounting of facts, but as a personal, vivid, direct and dramatic encounter with the turbulent times of revolutionary France, it is in fact an extended dramatic monologue in which we meet not only the striking personalities and events of the time, but the equally striking personality and mind of Thomas Carlyle himself.

    Michael says: "A Poetic Version of the Revolution"
    "A Poetic Version of the Revolution"
    Overall

    The first reviewers of this audio-book missed the point entirely. Clearly Carlyle is not a contemporary writer and he is not writing an expository text. They should have known that if they had only bothered to consult the work ahead of time. But that's not the point of my post. The fact of the matter is I've been trying to make sense of the French Revolution, on and off, for the past twenty years and this book takes, as one of the reviewers noted, a poetic approach to the entire episode, if we may call it that. Surprisingly, I started Carlyle's book and couldn't stop reading. That's when I decided to order the audio edition primarily for help with French pronunciation of place names and persons. Once you get into the rhythm of the writing is carries itself, as poetic writing does. Yes, the diction and word order will be a challenge for today's reader, but the underlying unity of the work with it's historical sensibility is outstanding. I certainly recommend the audio edition as well, because it's a complement to the silent reader.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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