Edmund Burke: Philosopher, Politician, Prophet

13th Jun 2013; 18:00

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Campaigner, MP and writer Jesse Norman MP introduces Edmund Burke, philosopher, statesman and founder of modern conservatism, whose beliefs have never been more relevant that in today’s ‘Big Society’.

Amid the 18th century’s golden generation that included his companions Adam Smith, Samuel Johnson and Edward Gibbon, Burke’s controversial mixture of conservative and subversive theories made him first a marginal figure, and finally a revered theorist.

He warned of the effects of British rule in Ireland, the loss of the American colonies, and most famously, he foresaw the disastrous consequences of revolution in France. This he predicted, would trigger extremism, terror and the atomisation of society – a profound analysis that continues to resonate today.

Speaker: Jesse Norman MP
Chair: Allegra Stratton, political editor, Newsnight

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