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Rights of Man and Common Sense

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  108 ratings  ·  12 reviews


The authorities in power in England during Thomas Paine’s lifetime saw him as an agent provocateur who used his seditious eloquence to support the emancipation of slaves and women, the demands of working people, and the rebels of the French and American Revolutions. History, on the other hand, has come to regard him as the figure who gave political cogency to the liberatin
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Hardcover, 368 pages
Published October 4th 1994 by Everyman's Library (first published 1989)
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Community Reviews

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Dan
Thomas Paine takes time out from championing a equal society to stick a middle finger up at Edmund Burke. Frequently.
ProgressiveBookClub
The Greatest Radical of a Radical Age

Paine turned Americans into radicals, and we’ve remained radicals at heart ever since.

By Harvey J. Kaye

You want to understand American experience? You want to make sense of why you despise injustice, inequality, and oppression? You want to know why you yearn to turn the world upside down? Read Thomas Paine’s revolutionary pamphlet, Common Sense.

In fewer than fifty pages, Paine not only inspired Americans to declare their independence and create a republic, he
...more
Paul Parsons
At a time in which our freedoms are threatened from within by an overreaching Federal government, it is helpful to read the thoughts of those who lived during the times of our founding. Thomas Paines' political essays written in the late 1700s decried the English form of hereditary rule vs. the newer form of representative government recently established in America. The concerns, however, are the same today; that of overtaxation and intrusion into our personal lives of a governing body out of to ...more
John
The most progressive of the "founding fathers". Although he is a bit fond of strange extrapolations from mathematical data to prove social points (a weakness of the Enlightenment generally) the volume is an entertaining and educational read. The volume also includes Paine's short work, Agrarian Justice, with a plea for comprehensive social provisions for the old, the young, the disabled, and the unpropertied based on an interesting version of an estate tax.
Zoe
I read the Rights of Man, and I was surprised how much Paine relied on biblical reasoning to justify emancipation of the 13 colonies. As far as the Rights of Man is concerned, I didn't finish the two pamphlets, and so I'll have to go back at some point. One interesting point from the first one of these, however, was the close connections that Paine showed between the American revolution and the French.
Gurushakti Noriega
I thought that what was pertinent in 1780s is pertinent now. The subjects Paine touched upon are still very real, but the faith he put on representational government and constitutions seemed a bit supernatural. Centuries later we are still grappling with unjust taxation and global conflicts.
James Violand
Jul 02, 2014 James Violand rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone.
Shelves: own
The great propagandist of two revolutions, Paine told it like it is. An excellent rendition of the rights of the common man against oppression. Well worth and annual reading.
Annette Renaud
Thomas Paine's Common Sense opened my eyes to a better understanding of human kind and my own pentient to live free. A definite read for everyone.
Joe
Dec 07, 2010 Joe marked it as to-read
Read excerpts in college and now idolize Thomas Paine
Carolyn
Classics. Should be taught in every school.
Shymaa
I can't handle the irony.
Alex
Feb 17, 2008 Alex rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
The old arguments are still relevant.
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Thomas Paine (February 9, 1737 – June 8, 1809) was an English-American political activist, author, political theorist and revolutionary. As the author of two highly influential pamphlets at the start of the American Revolution, he inspired the Patriots in 1776 to declare independence from Britain. His ideas reflected Enlightenment-era rhetoric of transnational human rights. He has been called "a c ...more
More about Thomas Paine...
Common Sense Common Sense, The Rights of Man and Other Essential Writings Common Sense and Other Writings Rights of Man The Age of Reason

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