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Joseph de Maistre and Retributionist Theology

Published in University of Tabriz- Iran
Volume: 11
Issue: 21
Pages: 1 - 12

Joseph de Maistre is usually portrayed as Edmund Burke’s French counterpart, as they both wrote important treatises against the French Revolution. Although Maistre did share many of Burke’s conservative political views, he was much more than a political thinker. He was above all a religious thinker who interpreted political events through the prism of a particular retributionist theology. According to this theology, God punishes evil deeds, not only in the afterlife, but also in this terrestrial life; and sometimes, he may even use human tyrants as instruments of his wrath. This interpretation especially evident in Maistre’s Considerations sur la France, an early work in his philosophical career. In that book, Maistre interprets the French Revolution as divine punishment, and in that regard, his views bear some similarities to the Deuteronomist historian in the Hebrew Bible, who interpreted the destruction of Jerusalem and the Babylonian Exile, as divine punishment in retribution of Israel’s sins.

About the journal
JournalPhilosophical Investigations
PublisherUniversity of Tabriz- Iran
Open AccessNo