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The sub-branch of history that is known by the ambiguous (and frightening to undergraduates, cats, and many mainstream academics) name “historiography” seems to be undergoing a Renaissance at the moment.
Ask a historian of demonology to review a biography of an astrologer. It seemed like a good idea when the invitation arrived, and I happily consented. What could possibly go wrong? The subject seemed interesting.
A. C. Grayling's latest book claims that the modern mind emerged from a series of events which took place, and ideas which materialised, in the 17th century. The Age of Genius argues that the forces of democracy, secularism, enlightenment and science triumphed at this time over divine-right monarchy, religious faith, ignorance and tradition.
Radical Enlightenment: Philosophy and the Making of Modernity 1650–1750 (Oxford, 2001); Enlightenment Contested: Philosophy, Modernity and the Emancipation of Man 1670–1752 (Oxford, 2006); Democratic Enlightenment: Philosophy, Revolution and Human Rights 1750–1790 (Oxford, 2011); Revolutionary Ideas: an Intellectual History of the French Revolution from the Rights
This impressively erudite, well researched, and eloquently written book by Joan Pau Rubiés analyses the development of Iberian and Italian travellers' accounts of south India over three hundred years.