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Edmund Burke, Volume I: 1730-1784 1st Edition

5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0199226634
ISBN-10: 0199226636
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Editorial Reviews

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"Professor Lock gives us the first volume of what promises to be an important biography."(Derek Jarrett, LRB )


"Meticulous and massive biography.... Helped by the bedrock of collected scholarly editions of Burke's letters, writings and speeches, he can raise this splendid monument. Refreshingly free of jargon and interpretative whimsies--he nods ritually to 'otherness and alienation' only once--this is a study which will endure."--Toby Barnard, Times Literary Supplement


"Burke's story is well and sympathetically told...gracefully and clearly written."--American Historical Review


"A work of balanced judgment and painstaking research. F.P. Lock has produced the first volume of what will undoubtedly be the standard modern biography."--J.C.D. Clark, English Historical Review


About the Author

F.P. Lock is a Professor of English at Queen's University, Kingston.
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Product Details

  • Series: Edmund Burke (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 616 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (October 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199226636
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199226634
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 1.2 x 6.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,847,447 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Of the various styles of biographies I've read, I think I prefer what Lock has achieved here. It's definitely not the kind of page-turner which Robert Caro delivers, nor is it heavily weighed down with details such as De La Grange has given us with Gustav Mahler. Instead, Lock gives us intelligently written background surrounding the issues and people as they arise; judicious use of Burke's letters (and letters to him) as well as his writings; and details that help bring the era to life. He also brings the themes together, which means the telling is not a simple chronology. Lock gives us all sides of Burke, too: not just the politician and the family man, but the brother and the farmer. What I also like about this book is that Lock does not hesitate to criticize Burke when his behavior is less than ethical or when Burke's arguments are disingenuous. It's a critical examination, and Lock doesn't dumb it down. (I can't wait for volume 2, although my checkbook can.)
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Format: Hardcover
This will become the standard biography of Burke - but this book is not just for scholars: anyone with an interest in 18th century politics and culture will benefit from reading this work. The narrative is well written, with much detail and necessary (but not too basic) background detail; overall it keeps the reader's interest. Burke's own works are analysed thoroughly, within the framework of his life.
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Edmund Burke, Volume I: 1730-1784
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