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On Permanent Revolution

This book-length project explores how revolution went from being the means toward a constitutional settlement, to becoming an end in and of itself. Stretching from the sixteenth to the twentieth century, it focuses in particular on the transformation of revolutionary authority during the French Revolution; on Marx's development of the concept of a "revolution in permanence"; and finally on the relation between this new model and the political violence that has often accompanied revolutions. An article from this project appeared in French Historical Studies; another is forthcoming in The Scaffold of Sovereignty, ed. Zvi Ben-Dor, Stefanos Geroulanos, and Nicole Jerr (Columbia University Press).


France, Russia, Germany

Principal Investigator:

Dan Edelstein

Current Research Interests: 
My current research lies in the fields of intellectual history, political thought, and digital humanities (DH). I'm writing a book that explores the history of rights from the Wars of Religion to the Age of Revolutions ("The Spirit of the Rights"); a second book on the history and theory of permanent revolution ("On Permanent Revolution"); and I continue to work on a number of DH projects, including Mapping the Republic of Letters (for which I am a co-PI), and Writing Rights, a study of the drafts and debates leading up to the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the...
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