From School Library Journal
YA?The authors clearly identify and discuss the key people, subject fields, terms, styles, works, and European locations important in history from the late 1600s to 1800. Americans such as Franklin, Jefferson, and Paine are included. Specific literary, musical, and artistic achievements include Rousseau's Confessions, Mozart's "The Magic Flute," and Goethe's Faust. The more lengthy definitions of terms such as the French Revolution, classicism, or rococo could be useful as they are more concise than those discussions found in the many books written on the same topic. Black-and-white photography aids in gathering interest but is a disappointment for the works of art. A term in all uppercase letters indicates a cross reference both within the text and in the chronology. The detailed index is printed in a tiny font and includes cross references.?Claudia Moore, W. T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A revision of a work originally published in 1996, this volume has "140 new, updated, or expanded articles," according to its preface, giving it just over 800 entries total. Increased emphasis has been placed on "the Enlightenment in a global context," as well as on the "Counter-Enlightenment," or interest in spiritualism and esotericism that emerged in the late eighteenth century. New entries include Colonialism, Great Awakening
, and Washington, George
, as well as several that demonstrate greater focus on women--Behn, Aphra; Fielding, Sarah;
and Women and the Enlightenment,
to give a few examples. The alphabetically arranged set has more than 120 black-and-white illustrations and extensive cross-references throughout. A chronology opens the work, and a selected bibliography follows the entries. Lengthier entries conclude with a selected reading list. There are no maps, although given the general reading level of the work, maps for such entries as Holy Roman Empire
would be a nice addition.
The encyclopedia keeps to its theme of being "conceived and written as a point of departure for anyone . . . who wishes to begin encountering this world in all its complexities." Entries are infused with references to the cultural and philosophical context of the period, plus the volume succeeds admirably in showing the Enlightenment's reach beyond its traditional continental European locale.
Two much more comprehensive works have been published recently: Oxford's four-volume Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment (2003) and a two-volume set published by Fitzroy Dearborn in 2001 with the same title that was translated from a 1997 French work. Although libraries with comprehensive collections in this area will likely find the current volume lacking when compared to those two, it is nevertheless a worthwhile and reasonably priced purchase for public and academic libraries of all sizes. Ken Black
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