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Problem of communication of Education and the French revolution of the 18th century in A. Kobben's works

e. S. Meer


Work is presented by department of general history of the Krasnoyarsk state pedagogical university of V.P. Astafyev. The research supervisor - the candidate of historical sciences, associate professor S.I. Kangun

This article is devoted to the analysis of works of the English historian A. Kobben (1901-1968). In yens is considered as he solves a problem of communication between Education and the French revolution. The author draws attention to audit of traditional interpretation of a question by Kobben.

The article is devoted to the analysis of the writings of the English historian A. Cobban (1901-1968). The author considers the historian&s decision of the problem of the relation between the Enlightenment and the French Revolution and attracts attention to Cobban&s revision of the traditional interpretation of the question.

In 50-60-egg. 20th century the English historian A. Kobben carried out audit of nature of the French revolution and the main social problems, related - about existence of feudalism in France of the end of the 18th century,

about the nature of the prerevolutionary bourgeoisie, etc. It made his name well-known in many countries.

But A. Kobben recognized that the most part of the career he devoted thought stories, but not social истории&. Within forty years he studied Education. According to the pupil A. Kobben of J.F. Bo-sher: "will not be exaggeration to tell that Education was in the center of his political and historical thought" 2. To agree with this statement, it is rather simple to look at the list of works


A. Kobbena. He began the way to areas of studying revolution with a research of problems of Prosveshcheniya. Therefore it is very important to consider its solution of a question of Prosveshcheniya's communication and the French revolution.

In the analysis of a problem, in our opinion, it is important to clear the following aspects. Whether A. Kobben carried out audit of communication of Prosveshcheniya and the French revolution as

it was with social problems? If yes, that in what it consisted when it was carried out and what influenced her?

Long time A. Kobben, despite studying problems of Prosveshcheniya, specially did not set a research problem of communication of Prosveshcheniya and the French revolution. Purposefully this problem was lifted in its late article of the middle of the 1960th. "Education and the French revolution" which was a part of the collection "Aspects of the French Revolution" in 1968

In this article we find revision of traditional interpretation of communication of Prosveshcheniya and the French revolution. Its essence is "belief that revolution was caused by distribution of the enlightened ideas". So the whole chain considered Real


rik from E. Burke to Zh. Lefebvre.

A. Kobben criticized this look: "Though contemporaries and historians agreed to relationship of cause and effect between... Education and revolution, the assumptions of both from them which usually are the cornerstone of this consent

hardly it is possible to consider true after not -


old historical analysis".

The doubt in traditional interpretation arose at A. Kobben not suddenly from scratch. It is possible to tell with confidence that new revisionist views were put since the beginning of the 30th of the 20th century

It is possible to make sure of it, considering A. Kobben's work of the 30th "Russo and the modern state". In it he puts a problem of influence of Russo on revolutionaries.

The research of communication of Prosveshcheniya and the French revolution in A. Kobben's creativity also begins with doubt about Russo's influence on revolution.

And. Kobben accepts Russo's impact on a frame of reference of Robespierre only provided that "his influence was not necessary... to develop the idea of the state despotism which could be pozaim-

6 TT

a stvovana quite at an old regime". Recognizing theoretical influence of Russo on Robespierre, it opposes Russo's principles to board of terror. Also believes what Robespierre did not understand Russo that he

was mistaken, considering what realizes in


life of his idea. Thus, A. Kobben underestimates the importance of the ideas of Russo in revolution and criticizes a look that the control system of Jacobeans is a realization of the ideas of Russo in practice.

The second important thought of A. Kobben is that "political impact of Russo certain

image not so clearly and simply, as usual 8

it is supposed p". A. Kobben urges not to neglect that impact which Russo's ideas made on noblemen, on katoli-


chesky revival, etc. The duke's figure д& Antrega in creativity A. Kobbena is an example of the pupil Russo who turned in

"the royalist who finished as the emigrant


the most reactionary type".

Vividly the expert Prosveshcheniya on P. Gay estimated this thought of A. Kobben. "Philosophers the property of one political wing were not. Robespierre had no monopoly for Russo" & #34;.

Finally A. Kobben's conclusion is "difficulty of any total popyt-

ki to define Russo's influence during re-


volyutsionny period".

Since the beginning of the 40th of the 20th century in its works Prosveshcheniya's opposition to revolution which it is accurately traced

will develop the subsequent twenty with


superfluous years.

It received the bright embodiment in "The history of modern France" in the second half of the 1950th A. Kobben gives a lot of place to the analysis of an age of the reforms preceding revolution and sees in them the embodiment of the educated spirit. Education and reform became synonyms for the historian, he denies abstractness of Prosve-14


But if reforms in the educated spirit are "the blossoming trees", then revolution for

A. Kobben is "loss of snow" on them.

In work of 1960. "In search of humanity" A. Kobben repeats a thought of Prosveshcheniya's failure during a revolution era. The principle of people's sovereignty realized in Jacobin tyranny and in revolutionary war is opposed to Prosveshcheniya's ideas. "To find the principle of people's or national sovereignty, we do not need to read Prosveshcheniya's works and if we read them, we will not find it there. We need to read only the little abbot who in 1789 was an oracle

>., " - 17

the third estate in France, Siyeyesa".

In the main revisionist book "Social Interpretation of the French Revolution" (1964) as notes

B. Doyle, "Kobben ignored intellek-

18 ^

tualny questions almost entirely". It is not surprising if to consider that A. Kobben wanted to pay attention in this work of the social history which became his overdue passion. But this book - it is rather an exception of the rule.

At concentration on career motives of revolutionaries in the first revisionist manifesto "Myth of the French Revolution" (middle of the 1950th). A. Kobben did not consider at all that "revolutionaries

were simple economic animals". He emphasized that "members of the French revolutionary meetings were vos-

Pitana on Prosveshcheniya's ideas".

He was not going to forget

about Education at all, on the contrary, in the article "Education and French Revolution" it summed up long audit of their communication.

But, first, in general A. Kobben underestimates political influence of the French Prosveshcheniya for revolution on the ground that "the French Education did not create systematic polity-20

chesky theory". Even "Public

contract... had no established influence

before revolution also had only very much


disputable influence during its course".

Secondly, A. Kobben believes that the political ideas of revolution had no Education as the source. According to him, the idea of people's sovereignty was the central political idea of revolution. But this new invention of revolution, educators do not have it, it was expressed by Siyeyes, A. Kobben notes. Only at

Russo is a similar thought, but at him to Suva -


renitt it is not absolute.

Thirdly, Education, according to A. Kobbe - well, is a synonym of individualism. As opposed to it revolution is the beginning of an era of nationalism. The liberal ideas of Prosveshcheniya are sharply opposed to A. Kob-

Ben to revolutionary terrorism, oligar-


hiya and dictatorship. Thus, it justifies Education, in the work as before again "In search of humanity".

And fourthly, "does not follow from this that we have to write off completely Prosveshcheniya's influence in revolution". Revolutionaries "inevitably were children of Prosveshche-

niya". A. Kobben recognizes in political ideology of revolutionaries existence of the elements of liberalism borrowed at

Locke, the humanistic ideas and knowledge in

fields of law.

A final conclusion of A. Kobben sounds doubly, in style of revisionism. "The principles of education cover revolution irregularly like the lighthouse beam fluctuating around is bright and then disappearing. Prosveshcheniya's influence cannot be ignored in any history of the French revolution; but revolutionaries did not lay the course its light at the beginning, they did not head the ship of the state to the harbor Pro-35

sveshcheniye at the end".

J.F. Bosher noted that a great influence on change of views of his teacher

on Education the tragedy by the Second had

world war. As it seems to us, it is logical to assume that it left a big mark and on interpretation of narrower problem considered by us. However, A. Kobben's audit was based also on

emergence of a number of researches.

Thus, we can draw the following conclusions. On the basis of studying new researches in the field of Prosveshcheniya and owing to the tragedy of World War II A. Kobben begins to carry out audit of a problem of communication of Prosveshcheniya and the French revolution. Essence of this audit - in underestimation of influence of Prosveshcheniya for revolution, in minimization of relationship of cause and effect between these phenomena and their opposition. Audit began to be made from 1930th, long before the official performance of A. Kobben with revision of nature of the French revolution (the middle of the 50th gt. 20th century).

1 Bosher J. F. Alfred Cobban&s View of the Enlightenment. The Modernity of the Eighteenth Century. Ed. by L. T. Milic. Cleveland and London, 1971. P. 43-44.
2 Ibid. P. 37.

French Government and Society 1500-1850. Essays in Memory of Alfred Cobban. Ed. by J. F. Bosher. London, 1973. P.15-18.


Cobban A. The Enlightenment and the French Revolution. Cobban A. Aspects of the French Revolution. New York, 1968. P. 18-20.

5 Ibid. P. 20.

Cobban A. Rousseau and the Modern State. Hamden, Archon, 1961. P. 30. (This American edition reprint of the English edition of 1934).

7 Ibid. River 30.

Ibid. River 31.

& #34; Ibid.

& #34; & Ibid. River 255.

& #34; Gay P. The Party of Humanity. Essays in the French Enlightenment. New York, 1964. P. 176. Cobban A. Rousseau and the Modern State. P. 32.


Bosher J. F. Alfred Cobban&s View of the Enlightenment. P.40.


Cobban A. A History of Modern France. Vol.1. London, 1957. P. 92-94,97,99,102-108,124,127-128.

15 Ibid. P. 109.

Cobban A. In Search of Humanity. The Role of the Enlightenment in Modern History. London,

1960. P. 181-193.

Ibid. P. 189.

Cobban A. The Social Interpretation of the French Revolution. Cambridge, 1964; Doyle W. Origins of the French Revolution. Oxford, 1980. P. 27.

& #34; Cobban A. The Myth of the French Revolution. Cobban A. Aspects of the French Revolution. New

York, 1968. P. 107.


Cobban A. The Enlightenment and the French Revolution. P. 22.


Ibid. P. 23-24.

23 Ibid. P. 25-26.

Ibid. P. 27.

25 Ibid. P. 28.
26 Bosher J. F. Alfred Cobban&s View of the Enlightenment. P. 45-50.
27 Ibid. P. 39; Cobban A. Rousseau and the Modern State. P. 29-30.
Rebecca Brooks
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