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Paradoxes of Civil Society: New Perspectives on Modern German and British History

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Paradoxes of Civil Society

New Perspectives on Modern German and British History

Edited by Frank Trentmann
With a Preface by Charles Maier and a New Foreword by the Editor

394 pages, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-57181-142-4 $120.00/£85.00 Hb Published (January 2000)

ISBN  978-1-57181-143-1 $34.95/£24.00 Pb Published (August 2003)

eISBN 978-1-78533-054-4 eBook

Hb Pb   Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Buy the ebook from these vendors


"[This book] does an admirable job of making our understanding of civil society both more elaborated and more complex. Bringing together theoretical and historical perspectives, and insisting on the significance of the comparative, these essays provide an important resource for researchers, teachers and students."  ·  Catherine Hall,

"It is fitting to recognize ways in which civil society may produce conformity and inequality; it is also fitting to recognize how it allows for challenges to insularity and discrimination. This volume succeeds admirably in fostering an appropriately nuanced and balanced view."  ·  Albion

"The resurgence of interest in the concept of civil society among political scientists and social theorists has permeated the language of historians during the past decade – bringing with it the familiar dangers of inflation, confusing eclecticism, and misuse. This volume ... grounds the discussion in an impressive series of carefully delimited essays, contextualizing the category in rich and illuminating ways. Frank Trentmann's team eloquently brings theory and history together."  ·  Geoff Eley,


"Civil Society" has been experiencing a global renaissance among social movements and political thinkers during the last two decades. This collection of original papers by junior and senior scholars offers an important comparative-historical dimension to the debate by examining the historical roots of civil society in Germany and Britain from the seventeenth-century revolutions to the beginning of the welfare state.

Frank Trentmann is Senior Lecturer in Modern History at Birkbeck College, University of London.

Subject: General Cultural Studies General History
Area: Germany Europe