In this major contribution to European social history, Miller has succeeded in doing to history what Richard Wagner did to music—weaving together powerful motifs with dramatic results." —Choice
[Miller’s book] wrestles with issues as basic as the historical construction of the Western personality and its connections with how Western societies have organized the state, the economy, the family, and intimate everyday life." —MaryJo Maynes
This wide-ranging study of familial, political, and economic change in the West between the sixteenth and the nineteenth centuries is organized around the two themes of the fall of a patriarchalist social order and the reformist movement to instill self-mastery into subject populations—and how those societal shifts transformed state school systems.