Footnotes (76)



Rights, Resistance, and Revolution: The Protestant Foundations of Rights and Revolution

John Witte Jr.

Emory University School of Law

Law and History Review, Forthcoming

This article discusses the development of rights talk in the pre-Enlightenment Protestant tradition, especially as formulated by the sixteenth-century Calvinist theologian and jurist, Theodore Beza. Responding to the horrific persecution born of the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre of 1572, Beza mobilized classical, Catholic, and Protestant sources alike to develop a coherent Calvinist theory of rights, resistance, and revolution against tyrants. This article details Beza's arguments, places his work in its historical and intellectual context, and highlights the innovations Beza contributed to the intersection of legal, political, and theological teachings. It concludes by showing how Beza's theory of subjective rights and resistance to tyranny helped to plot the course of modern democratic and constitutional theory.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 23

Accepted Paper Series

Download This Paper

Date posted: September 15, 2007  

Suggested Citation

Witte, John, Rights, Resistance, and Revolution: The Protestant Foundations of Rights and Revolution. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1014726

Contact Information

John Witte Jr. (Contact Author)
Emory University School of Law ( email )
1301 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States
404-727-6980 (Phone)
404-712-8605 (Fax)
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 892
Downloads: 176
Download Rank: 95,318
Footnotes:  76

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo1 in 0.391 seconds