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aoox~ REVIEWS 327 These views were not just those of country preachers, but also of leading professors and statesmen. Dr. Bloch tends to treat all her many Millenarians co-equally, but some like Ezra Stiles, the President of Yale, Elias Boudinot, President of the Continental Congress and later Director of the U. S. Mint and founder of the American Bible Society, Hannah Adams, author of an important History of theJews, Joseph Priestley, the great chemist, and Charles Crawford, a leading abolitionist and philo-semitic Millenarian , who almost convinced the Czar to emancipate the Jews, all played major roles in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century thought in America and Europe. Bloch contends that American revolutionary ideology depended on the Millennial view so predominant in the colonies, and that people like Tom Paine had to use the vocabulary of the Millenarians to gain a hearing. This fine book gives a much needed balance to the view that late eighteenthcentury America was just the liberal enlightened offspring of John Locke and JeanJacques Rousseau. It was also the continuation of European Millennalism, and this led to interpreting the two great revolutions in terms of the expectations of Joseph Mede, Isaac Newton, William Whiston, Pierre Jurieu, and a host of other students of Providential history, awaiting its imminent culmination. I think we can only make sense of American thought from the early colonies to today as an intermingling and sometimes---as now--a clashing of the secular Enlightenment vision and the Millenarian vision. There is a tendency to wonder where the ever present Christian (and now Jewish) fundamentalists are coming from. They have been here, have influenced the thought and visions of students, politicians, and many writers and scholars. Studies like Bloch's can help us see how deeply rooted this side of our heritage is, and maybe help us come to terms with it. RICHARD H. POPKIN Washington University University of California, Los Angeles Georges Gusdorf. Fondements du savoir romantique. Les Sciences humaines et la pens~e occidentale, Vol. 9- Paris: Payot, 198~. Pp. 471. NP. The formidable Gusdorf is not at his best in this volume. Truculent as ever, he claims to be a universal scholar (~Mit) rather than a merely partial historian. In practice this means that he is a chronicler of trees rather than of forests. He is intolerant of analytical complexity, which he denounces as "antimetaphysical terrorism" 092), and his generalizations amount only to a naming of species, not to a delineation of the ecology of romanticism. When he wants to chide us for scholarly neglect, he treats romanticism as a period concept; at other points he identifies the essence of romanticism in a transhistorical mode, a youthful "general mobilization of inspiration" (34), which allows him to omit from his picture the richly fulfilled old ages of Goethe, Humboldt, and Eichendorff. He casts his net widely, and not many major figures are entirely skipped, but Gusdorf's Kant almost stops with the Deduction of the Categories, and the other major philosophical and poetic texts of the period might just as well never 328 JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY 26:2 APRIL 1988 have been written: Goethe is notable for some unconventional scientific tenets; Fichte was a nostalgic liberal who inspired Novalis to write fragments; Walter Scott--but here I must quote--"Walter Scott is a Scottish equivalent of Alexandre Dumas" (x ao). Flashy allusions to Polish and Spanish romanticism do not make a polymath; in actuality, the single chapter to which the British romantics are almost entirely confined is riddled with errors, and the first-hand contributions of the book seem limited to a rather small core of minor writers, mostly Naturphilosophen. Gusdorf isjust a historian after all. Yet as a historian--a man of limited, distinctive perspectives---Gusdorf makes two important contributions. The first is polemical, a corrective to the parochial views of romanticism that prevail in France. Gusdorf devotes a chapter, for instance, to a thorough treatment of conservative and classicizing writers of the romantic period. And he discusses romantic science at length. Here, though Gusdorf once claims to be rehashing the old chestnut that romanticism is "the revenge of the imagination over the intellect and...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1538-4586
Print ISSN
0022-5053
Pages
pp. 327-329
Launched on MUSE
2008-01-01
Open Access
No
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