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Book Review: Voltaire the Universal Man

Voltaire the Universal Man by Derek Parker delves into the very chaotic but interesting life of one of the world’s greatest playwrights and thinkers. Voltaire was born in 1694 whose real name was François-Marie Arouet. He wrote thousands of books, letters, and theatricals in his attempt to help people to think beyond the obvious. He railed against short logic, intolerance, dogmatic blindness, war, and at times established royalty.   In many ways he adopted American values and encouraged others in his country to follow the same beliefs. Taught by Jesuits his family pushed him to become an attorney. However, he rebelled and instead became a writer and poet. Because of the way he thought about the world, and his criticism of some Paris practices, he spent numerous times imprisoned. An eleven month stay in the Bastille caused estrangement from his family but also freed him to pursue his own goals.  His personality and fame can be seen in one of his conflicts. When a Paris n

Book Review: The Count of Monte Cristo

The Count of Monte Cristo is a story of luck, adventure and triumph.   He is a near perfect young man who is the captain of a ship and a successful trader. He is soon to be married to a beautiful young girl Mercedes whom he offers all the worlds love.   The jealousy of three of Dante’s friends leads to a plot against him. The ship’s treasurer Danglars is jealous of Dante’s young success, Fernand Mondego wants his fiancé, and his neighbor Caderousse is enraged by Dante’s luck. Each sucked in by their own weakness. The three plot to arrest him for treason for carrying a message to Napoleon Bonaparte sympathizers as a promise to the deceased previous captain.   At that time in history, Napoleon sympathizers in Paris were enemies of the state. Even though Dante had no political leanings he was still arrested for his alleged crimes on his wedding day and thrown into prison. He was not guilty of anything but fulfilling a promise. The deputy public prosecutor Villefort understo

Book Review- Grand Strategies: Literature, Statecraft and World Order

Grand Strategies by Charles Hill offers some interesting insights into the building of nations and their relations to each other. The understanding of current states requires delving into the historical past. Without this knowledge one suffers from an improper perspective due to a lack of international context. Through the development of this philosophical perspective readers better understand how thoughts led to the development of a nation and modern forms of existence.  The work uses philosophy and history to create an interesting read that will maintain your interest from cover to cover. Filled with philosophical ramblings, poetry and historical tidbits the book appears to be well researched and thought out. The state of diplomacy between nations is rift with drama and intrigue ranging from the odd to the downright ludicrous.  In many ways the fear of government and its very purpose is the protection of people. This protection might come from foreign nations but might a