This book is structured around a number of important themes which run across the revolutionary decade, most notably the themes of political and social change. Alan Forrest's book offers an interpretation of the historiography of the subject and reviews the copious literature resulting from the recent Bicentenary. Unlike some recent histories, it insists that the Revolution had a significant social dimension. Divided into five main sections, the book examines the ideals which informed the work of the revolutionaries and the process by which they sought to dismantle the ancient regime and build a new order in France. It assesses the impact of war and counter-revolution, which in their different ways distorted the revolutionary agenda and contributed to the mood of nationalism, intolerance and terror that characterized the months of the Jacobin Republic.