Candide, Zadig, and Selected Stories - Voltaire

     This book is a collection of some of Voltaire's fictional stories, in which he criticizes many commonly held views in his day. Religion, philosophy, and politics were all attacked, as nothing was sacred from Voltaire's semi-comedic criticism. The criticisms he makes of his contemporary society are usually very good, although, unfortunately, he does not take them far enough. Among many flaws, the two that mainly stick out are his ethnic stereotypes and sexism. This is not in and of itself surprising, but I had hoped for more from one of the leading figures of the Enlightenment. Oh well. It could have been a lot worse, and compared to many others of his day, his views were quite modern and humane. Overall an interesting read, and of important historical value.