The Information Master: Jean-Baptiste Colbert's Secret State Intelligence System

The Information Master Jean Baptiste Colbert s Secret State Intelligence System Colbert has long been celebrated as Louis XIV s minister of finance trade and industry More recently he has been viewed as his minister of culture and propaganda In this lively and persuasive book

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  • Title: The Information Master: Jean-Baptiste Colbert's Secret State Intelligence System
  • Author: Jacob Soll
  • ISBN: 9780472116904
  • Page: 460
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Colbert has long been celebrated as Louis XIV s minister of finance, trade, and industry More recently, he has been viewed as his minister of culture and propaganda In this lively and persuasive book, Jake Soll has given us a third Colbert, the information manager Peter Burke, University of Cambridge Jacob Soll gives us a road map drawn from the French state under C Colbert has long been celebrated as Louis XIV s minister of finance, trade, and industry More recently, he has been viewed as his minister of culture and propaganda In this lively and persuasive book, Jake Soll has given us a third Colbert, the information manager Peter Burke, University of Cambridge Jacob Soll gives us a road map drawn from the French state under Colbert With a stunning attention to detail Colbert used knowledge in the service of enhancingroyal power Jacob Soll s scholarship is impeccable and his story longoverdue and compelling Margaret Jacob, University of California, Los Angeles Nowadays we all know that information is the key to power, and that the masters of information rule the world Jacob Soll teaches us that Jean Baptiste Colbert had grasped this principle three and a half centuries ago, and used it to construct a new kind of state This imaginative, erudite, and powerfully written book re creates the history of libraries and archives in early modern Europe, and ties them in a novel and convincing way to the new statecraft of Europe s absolute monarchs Anthony Grafton, Princeton University Brilliantly researched, superbly told, and timely, Soll s story is crucial for the history of the modern state Keith Baker, Stanford UniversityWhen Louis XIV asked his minister Jean Baptiste Colbert the man who was to oversee the building of Versailles and the Royal Academy of Sciences, as well as the navy, the Paris police force, and French industry to build a large scale administrative government, Colbert created an unprecedented information system for political power In The Information Master, Jacob Soll shows how the legacy of Colbert s encyclopedic tradition lies at the very center of the rise of the modern state and was a precursor to industrial intelligence and Internet search engines.Soll s innovative look at Colbert s rise to power argues that his practice of collecting knowledge originated from techniques of church scholarship and from Renaissance Italy, where merchants recognized the power to be gained from merging scholarship, finance, and library science With his connection of interdisciplinary approaches regarding accounting, state administration, archives, libraries, merchant techniques, ecclesiastical culture, policing, and humanist pedagogy Soll has written an innovative book that will redefine not only the history of the reign of Louis XIV and information science but also the study of political and economic history.Jacket illustration Jean Baptiste Colbert 1619 1683 , Philippe de Champaigne, 1655, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Wildenstein Foundation, Inc 1951 51.34 Photograph 2003 The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

    One thought on “The Information Master: Jean-Baptiste Colbert's Secret State Intelligence System”

    1. This was the second book by Soll that I read to follow up on his MacArthur Genius Award. The book is a professional biography on Colbert, who was Louis XIV's finance minister - and his principal overall minister, although not really a Prime Minister. The premise of the book was that Colbert's impact is best understood as getting Louis XIV to institute a modern "information state" under Colbert's guidance. This makes Colbert a predecessor of modern state ministers as well as modern senior manager [...]

    2. Most of this material is WAY over my head, but the parts that I did understand appealed to the perfectionist, organizer, collector and information gatherer in me. If I had read the digital format instead, it would have been easier to look up words and follow endnotes. Some terms were so obscure that I couldn't find them on the internet such as "Ludovician" Louvre -- I know what/where the Louvre is, but what the heck does Ludovician refer to?

    3. Well researched and organized, though I found the author repeated himself just a bit more than he needed to for clarity. A great subject nonetheless and admirably treated.

    4. It's always so hard to review books like this because you don't really read them for enjoyment and fun. (Well, I do, but most normal people don't). It's well-written and comprehensive, and I now know more about the French state in the seventeeth century than I could possibly ever need to know. I think one drawback of these specialized books (and this is not in anyway related to the actual quality of the book) is that you really don't appreciate them without the historical background and larger c [...]

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