The Communal Mind and the Master Artifice
by Helen Sullivan
Edited by Amy Mims
Ebook (Kindle format)
Amazon Kindle ebook edition (March 2015): Click here for Amazon.com web page
Price: USD $ 8
This Comparative History of Spain and England is a unique synthesis of interdisciplinary fields – including Political Science, Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology and the Philosophy of Law. The author’s fascinating account of the 16th century Wars of the Communities in Spain (1520-1522) is contrasted with the historical experience of 14th to 17th century England. The Spanish local communities were characteristic of Castille – with their deeply rooted traditions and communal ethic against unjust centralized power. On the contrary, in England, the all-powerful British Monarchy deliberately transformed the local traditions, in order to construct the classic “Anglo-Saxon” system of parliamentary representative government and capitalism. The author investigates this elaborate process of political and economic transformation with amazing documentation, coining her own evocative phrase: The Master Artifice. Although this prophetic book was completed more than fifty years ago, its basic themes are more timely than ever. The present day phenomenon of globalization – viz., centralized power on a huge scale – and the ever-growing crisis threatening the world economy, make the historical conclusions of this work vital not only for scholars, but for everyone concerned with the future of humanity. Despite the author’s erudition, she also reveals an occasional touch of humour and an apocalyptic approach to literature – with appropriate quotations or references from Shakespeare and Cervantes, Zola and Tolstoy, Dickens and many other great writers.
With remarkable skill, Helen Sullivan handles the vast richness of her sources… I am convinced that in the very near future, this book will have become a point of reference in scholarly discussions throughout the world.
— Evanghelos Venizelos
Professor of Constitutional Law and active Greek Statesman