As it changed forever the political landscape of the modern world, the French Revolution was driven by a new type of personality: the confirmed, self-aware revolutionary. Maximilien Robespierre originated the role and embodied its ideological essence and extremes; the self that he projected to the people was equated with the ideals for which he strove. In creating this intellectual biography of so enigmatic a figure, David Jordan has stressed the words of the man about himself. With great imagination and insight, Jordan places Robespierre's self-conceptualization within the context of events and explains how Robespierre "The Incorruptible"—a man seen by contemporaries as virtuous—could not only equate justice with vengeance and demand it of the people, but also stand as its symbol before the world.
**** BCL3 cites the Free Press edition of 1985. In this intellectual biography, Jordan (history, Illinois) has stressed the words of the man about himself, placing Robespierre's self- conceptualization within the context of events, and explains how Robespierre originated the role of self-aware revolutionary and how he projected that self to the people. Fresh, readable and intelligent, this book was highly recommended when first published. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)