Political Thought

Glenn Burgess

in The Oxford Handbook of Literature and the English Revolution

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199560608
Published online January 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

Political Thought

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)



This article examines political thought during the English Revolution. It identifies two interwoven imperatives that shaped English political thinking during the two decades of revolutionary turmoil: the imperative to find constitutional order and stability, and the imperative to ensure that worldly order, new or old, was compatible with the commands of God. The interplay of these imperatives runs right through the story of political thinking during the English Revolution, and is relevant to more or less every political grouping that emerged through two decades of turmoil. Arguments over the nature of Parliament, mixed monarchy, and the right of subjects to resist led to debates on sovereignty. While many writers engaged directly with Bodin, others came to see the relevance and usefulness of a concept of sovereignty by less immediate means.

Keywords: English Revolution; political thinking; constitutional order; worldly order; religion; Parliament; sovereignty

Article.  8566 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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