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Jean Paul Marat: Tribune of the French Revolution and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Jean Paul Marat: Tribune of the French Revolution (Revolutionary Lives)

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ISBN-13: 978-0745331935
ISBN-10: 0745331939
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Editorial Reviews


Cliff Conner's biography is a fresh, welcome look at one of the most complex and fascinating figures of the French Revolution. Marat's tumultuous career has many echoes for our own time, among them raising the question: are human rights merely legal and political, or are they economic as well? -- Adam Hochschild, author of King Leopold's Ghost (1999) and Bury the Chains (2006) Conner's book not only serves as a gripping introduction to the life of Marat and his role in the French Revolution, but also contains important insights and arguments towards a reappraisal of the role of popular politics and ideology in revolutionary situations. Furthermore it is a timely reminder of the importance and continuing relevance of studying the years 1789-1793 to our own troubled times. -- Richard Sheldon, Lecturer in Social and Economic History, University of Bristol Cliff Conner's retelling of Marat's life first clears away the cobwebs and prejudices and then reveals why we should love and admire this egalitarian revolutionary. Marat was the "Friend of the People" in the 1790s, and still has a message for us today about social, political, and economic equality. !Vive Marat! -- Lynne Stewart, lawyer This short biography, written in an accessible and lively style, presents an activist and journalist from the French Revolution, and rescues him from myths and slanders. It stresses his passion for equality and his defence of the poorest classes in society, drawing out the originality and continuing relevance of an often neglected figure -- Ian Birchall, author of The Spectre of Babeuf (1997). Cliff Conner's gracefully written and wisely observed biography of Jean Paul Marat tells the truth about this much maligned doctor and hero of the French revolution. Marat's advocacy for and leadership of the Parisian poor is reminiscent of another doctor turned revolutionary, Che Guevara, both timeless symbols in the ongoing struggle for social justice. -- Michael Ratner and Michael Steven Smith, human rights attorneys and authors of Who Killed Che? How the CIA Got Away With Murder. Michael Ratner is President Emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

About the Author

Clifford D. Conner is on the faculty of the School of Professional Studies at the City University of New York Graduate Center, where he teaches history. He has written biographies of two eighteenth-century Irish revolutionaries, Colonel Despard (2000) and Arthur O’Connor (2009). He is also the author of the acclaimed A People’s History of Science (2005) and is on the editorial board of The International Encyclopedia of Revolution and Protest.


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Product Details

  • Series: Revolutionary Lives
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Pluto Press (May 16, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745331939
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745331935
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,392,380 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I was born in New Jersey, grew up in Tennessee, and went to college at Georgia Tech. I worked for Lockheed Aircraft, which in 1966 sent me to England for a year as a design engineer on the C-5A cargo plane. My time in England coincided with the escalation of the Vietnam War. When I returned from England to Georgia, I resigned from Lockheed in a public act of protest against its role as a war profiteer. As a result, I became unemployable as the FBI dogged my trail, warning prospective employers against hiring me. (This was confirmed years later when I got my FBI files via a Freedom Of Information Act request.) I got married while still in college and by 1968 had three children, all daughters. The marriage ended in 1970, whereupon I moved to Manhattan and have been a New Yorker ever since. In 1980 I met my soulmate, Marush; we have lived "happily ever after." Meanwhile, the three daughters have produced a total of six grandchildren. Job stability has not been my strong suit, but I did eventually settle down to choose a career path. In 1985 I decided I wanted to be a historian, so I got the requisite Ph.D. degree and went on to teach history and write books on historical subjects.

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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Elliott C. Zink on August 31, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I would argue that the previous reviewers of this book despite their appearances to the contrary have nothing more than a base and shallow version of Jean-Paul Marat. They refer to him as "blood-thirsty" and a "scumbag," which are both not true, regardless of credentials. Let me put Marat in his historical context: for 1000 years before Marat, France (or portions thereof) had been ruled by a succession of Kings, emperors, foreign powers, and their supporting nobility. In that thousand years France, and indeed most of Europe was worked by nameless serfs and peasants who died by the thousands, hundred of thousands, and eventually millions. They starved, they were conscripted, incarcerated, and similarly abused to fill the coffers of that nobility. Look at the previous reviewer who refers to Marat as "a rabble rouser" or the other who refers to him as "a child killer." Did not Louis XIVth, that glorious "Sun King" kill children, or lead the rabble to three wars on three continents? What did Louis do to his rivals, the children of his rivals, the children of the French, German, Spanish, and East and West Indian? I dare say he did not treat them with love and generosity. Never you mind that it's a complete fabrication that Marat killed children, and I was unable to find any support for the raging egomaniac also mentioned, but let's concentrate on the "rabble rouser" Marat.
This book shows Marat being a supporter, of the onset of the Revolution, a participant with his L'ami du Peuple, whilst Paris erupted on its own. Marat never led that dreaded "rabble," which let me reiterate again, were the victims of one thousand years of royalist terror, and had finally had enough.
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1 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Boyd Hone on August 6, 2012
Format: Paperback
Due to the surprising dearth of books dedicated to Marat, I suppose one should be thankful that Clifford D. Conner has at least filled his slight 150-page tomb, Jean Paul Marat, with equally slight facts concerning Marat's life: dates and bare-bones events. Any book about Marat should include Marat's life and his times, and weigh-in at the 600-page level. Alas for those of us who yearn for realistic information concerning the French Revolution, Conner defends Marat's despicable reign, accusing Marat's accusers of `'denigrating every aspect of his life.'' In reality, of course, Marat was a scumbag whose writings inspired the illiterate French masses to murder thousands, many of whom were children (and this despite the fact that Marat was sincerely dedicated to the underdog). You'll learn just as much about the real Marat by reading Lawday's Danton and Scurr's Robespierre. But I'm being harsh. If Conner wants to write a short volume, that his business; if he wants to show indulgence to a child killer, that's his problem. The book remains, nonetheless, the most detailed work devoted just to Marat that I've read. We don't know why Marat did what he did, we know nothing of his motivations, but we do learn what happened, when and where. Just the `'whys'' go unanswered. My own books can be found on Amazon under Michael Hone.
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