Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
France before 1789The Unraveling of an Absolutist Regime$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jon Elster

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691149813

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691149813.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021



(p.1) Chapter One Introduction
(p.iii) France before 1789

Jon Elster

Princeton University Press

This chapter compares the making of the American constitution in 1787 and the French constitution in 1791. It discusses aspects of the pre-constitutional systems that would prove relevant for the understanding of the constitution-making processes. It also attempts to practice the union of history and psychology, which are the two main pillars of the social sciences. The chapter focuses on the quest for causality and the quest for agency or methodological individualism. It covers the main features of the prodigiously complex social system of the French ancien régime. It also cites many contemporary texts that illuminate the perverse and sometimes pathological effects of the social system.

Keywords:   American constitution, French constitution, pre-constitutional systems, constitution-making process, social science, methodological individualism

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.