The Military Revolution and Political Change: Origins of Democracy and Autocracy in Early Modern Europe

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Princeton University Press, 1993 - History - 308 pages
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To examine the long-run origins of democracy and dictatorship, Brian Downing focuses on the importance of medieval political configurations and of military modernization in the early modern period. He maintains that in late medieval times an array of constitutional arrangements distinguished Western Europe from other parts of the world and predisposed it toward liberal democracy. He then looks at how medieval constitutionalism was affected by the "military revolution" of the early modern era--the shift from small, decentralized feudal levies to large standing armies. Downing won the American Political Association's Gabriel Almond Award for the dissertation on which this book was based.To examine the long-run origins of democracy and dictatorship, Brian Downing focuses on the importance of medieval political configurations and of military modernization in the early modern period. He maintains that in late medieval times an array of constitutional arrangements distinguished Western Europe from other parts of the world and predisposed it toward liberal democracy. He then looks at how medieval constitutionalism was affected by the "military revolution" of the early modern era--the shift from small, decentralized feudal levies to large standing armies. Downing won the American Political Association's Gabriel Almond Award for the dissertation on which this book was based.
  

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User Review  - DanielMaddison - LibraryThing

With the military revolutions of the 17th century, every state (with only a few exceptions) needed a massive increse in resources to develop an army strong enough to survive. And extracting major new ... Read full review

Review: The Military Revolution and Political Change: Origins of Democracy and Autocracy in Early Modern Europe

User Review  - Jeffrey - Goodreads

Read this for a class but have turned back to it in times since. For fans and/or critics or Barrington Moore, this is a must-read follow up to his seminal work (Social Origins of Dictatorship and ... Read full review

Contents

III
3
IV
18
V
56
VI
84
VII
113
VIII
140
IX
157
X
187
XVI
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XVII
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XIX
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XX
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XXI
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XXII
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XXIII
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XXIV
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XI
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XII
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XIII
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XIV
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XV
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