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Louis Blanc (1811-82) was a French historian and politician whose writings had considerable influence on the development of French socialism. In his famous Organisation du travail (1839) he called for social reform by action of the State, an unusual position at the time. As a member of the provisional government established after the 1848 Revolution, he campaigned for workers' rights, advocating the creation of cooperative workshops. His monumental Histoire de la Revolution Francaise (1847-62), most of which he wrote while in exile in England, combines years of thorough research with Blanc's characteristic socialist and republican enthusiasm. The twelve-volume work begins with the intellectual and philosophical origins of the Revolution and the state of French society under Louis XVI. It traces the development of the Revolution from 1789 to the end of the National Convention in 1795.
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