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p. 585. Around the Revolutionlocked

  • John D. Lyons

Abstract

‘Around the Revolution’ describes the growing scepticism about claims that the social order was founded on nature, itself based on divine providence. The literary works inspired by the Revolution are examined. The eighteenth century saw a growing disaffection with absolute monarchy and a growing conviction that social institutions were based on an implicit contract rather than on divine authority. Beaumarchais's protagonist Figaro has become symbolic of the cultural ferment that led to the Revolution. In The Marriage of Figaro references to chance make it clear that it is through pure chance that Figaro and his master occupy their actual positions.

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