ABSTRACT

On Divorce is an anti-divorce treatise by Louis de Bonald, originally published in 1801 in response to the institution of divorce in France in the aftermath of the French Revolution. Examining the social structures of Christians, Jews, Asians, Greeks, and Romans, On Divorce links a theory of the family to a theory of politics and argues the family is a basic component of a stable society. As a politician, Bonald gave a crucial anti-divorce speech in the French legislature that summarized the argument of On Divorce. Due largely to Bonald's efforts, France abolished divorce in 1816.

According to Bonald, human society is composed of three interactive societies: religious society, domestic society (the family), and public society (the state). These societies operate on common principles and can only be analyzed in relation to one another. Since, in this view, the family, not the individual, is the basic unit of society, divorce represents a fundamental assault on the social order.

Bonald was one of the three principal founders of conservatism, along with Edmund Burke and Joseph de Maistre. Bonald's influence has been felt across the political spectrum and in areas as diverse as political theory, sociology, and literature. Of great interest to students of political philosophy, this work will be of equal value to those concerned with divorce and other social questions.

chapter

Foreword

ByNisbet Robert

chapter

The Importance of Bonald

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter

Translator’s Note

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter |1 pages

On Divorce

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter |31 pages

Introduction

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 2|12 pages

Of Domestic Society

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 3|8 pages

Of Public Society

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 4|5 pages

Of Marriage

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 6|6 pages

Of Society among the Jews

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 7|9 pages

Of Society among the Orientals, Greeks, and Romans

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 8|6 pages

Of Society among Christian Peoples

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 9|5 pages

Revolution in Christian Society

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 10|3 pages

Of the French Revolution

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 11|22 pages

General Considerations on Divorce

ByDavidson Nicholas

chapter 12|23 pages

Conclusion

ByDavidson Nicholas