Pierre Manent’s “Montaigne” Available in First English Translation

Author: Kathryn Pitts

Montaigne: Life without LawMontaigne: Life without Law

Pierre Manent is one of France’s leading political philosophers. In Montaigne: Life without Law, originally published in French in 2014 and now translated for the first time into English by Paul Seaton, Manent provides a careful reading of Montaigne’s three-volume work Essays. Although Montaigne’s writings resist easy analysis, Manent finds in them a subtle unity, and demonstrates the philosophical depth of Montaigne’s reflections and the distinctive, even radical, character of his central ideas. To show Montaigne’s unique contribution to modern philosophy, Manent compares his work to other modern thinkers, including Machiavelli, Hobbes, Pascal, and Rousseau. Providing thoughtful analysis and historical context, Manent reveals that Montaigne offers a new form of thinking and living, which provides us with a way of engaging in a truly thoughtful life.

"Pierre Manent shows repeatedly how Montaigne's views have come to inform much of what we take for granted in modern life. To know ourselves, we must know Montaigne. Manent proves an invigorating and sure guide." —Thomas Hibbs, author of Wagering on an Ironic God


Pierre Manent is professor emeritus of political philosophy at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales. He is the author of over 20 books in French and English, including Natural Law and Human Rights: Toward a Recovery of Practical Reason (University of Notre Dame Press, 2020), which has been reviewed in City Journal, Public Discourse, The Hedgehog Review, and The Federalist.

Montaigne: Life without Law, part of the Catholic Ideas for a Secular World series, is available in hardback and digital editions from the University of Notre Dame Press. For more information, or a review copy, contact: Kathryn Pitts, pitts.5@nd.edu, 574.631.3267.