Histoire philosophique et politique, des établissemens & du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes.

Guillaume Thomas Francois Raynal

In the 18th century, some Enlightenment thinkers started to oppose the lack of tolerance and individual freedom in absolutist forms of government, including the way the colonial empires were organized. One of these individuals was Guillaume Thomas Raynal (1713–1796), also known as the Abbé Raynal, who composed one of the first global histories as the bestseller Histoire des Deux Indes (1770). It is a history of European colonial trade and settlements that offers a salient critique, dealing with topics such as slavery, religion, customs and native peoples. The first edition was published anonymously with a fake imprint ("Amsterdam"). While Raynal was eventually credited as the author of the work, numerous authors contributed to this and several later editions, including the Baron d'Holbach and Denis Diderot.

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