By F. P. Lock

Edmund Burke’s Reflections at the Revolution in France is among the significant texts within the western highbrow culture. This publication describes Burke’s political and highbrow global, stressing the significance of the belief of ‘property’ in Burke’s suggestion. It then focuses extra heavily on Burke’s own and political scenario within the past due 1780s to provide an explanation for how the Reflections got here to be written. The valuable a part of the examine discusses the that means and interpretation of the paintings. within the final a part of the ebook the writer surveys the pamphlet controversy which the Reflections generated, paying specific cognizance to the main recognized of the replies, Tom Paine’s Rights of guy. It additionally examines the next popularity of the Reflections from the 1790s to the trendy day, noting how usually Burke has interested even writers who've disliked his politics.

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In the 'Benares' charge Hastings was accused of having deliberately provoked the Raja of Benares, Chait Singh, to renege on his agreement with the Company, in order to provide a pretext for Hastings to impose stiff financial penalties on Chait Singh and later to depose him. Perhaps the most spectacular charge, on which Sheridan made a speech (on 7 February 1787) which was widely regarded as the best ever delivered to the Commons, concerned the 'Begums of Oudh'. The Wazir of Oudh to whom Hastings had hired out troops in 1773 had been succeeded in 1775 by his son, Asaf-ud-daula.

In his Speech on Conciliation he claimed to have taken 'more than common pains to instruct myself in everything which relates to our colonies' (Works, 1:451). Once Burke had taken up the cause of India, he was equally active in mastering the subject. America and India were faraway countries of which relatively little was known. France was England's nearest neighbour in Europe; the largest, most populous nation-state in Europe; and England's great rival as a world power. It is absurd to suppose that Burke could be ignorant about it.

This administration was ridiculed for its lack of cohesion in Burke's Thoughts on the Present Discontents (1770), and in that pamphlet Burke developed his theory of 'party' (properly understood) as a necessary element in the political stability of a government. Unless the government was controlled by (though not necessarily composed of entirely) a party of men of known principle and integrity (such as the Rockingham party), there could be no responsible or effective administration (W&S, 2:317-22).

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