Remedial Education in Professor Bayle's History Class

in Playing the Fool

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780226473154
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226473178 | DOI:
Remedial Education in Professor Bayle's History Class

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Pierre Bayle has entertained readers with his fireworks, his deflation of pretensions, his frequent off-color insinuations, and his bravura performances. These features made Bayle's Historical and Critical Dictionary an internationally acclaimed work until the eighteenth century. A master of erudition as well as artful presentation and manipulation, Bayle wrote and argued in a manner that would draw some at least to ponder what he might really think. This was a point recognized by competent readers of the past, including Denis Diderot, Doris Lessing, and Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche. One of the Dictionary's major aims is to detect and correct others' errors, and Bayle shows in detail the faithlessness of others. He offers Suetonius's history as a model to emulate. He finds much to admire, and at the same time much to deplore, in the works of the ancient historians.

Keywords: Pierre Bayle; Nietzsche; history; historians; Suetonius

Chapter.  11523 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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