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J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu
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J&P Session 7 - Montesquieu

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The earliest of the four Enlightenment philosophers. The others who follow are Rousseau, Jefferson and Burke.

The earliest of the four Enlightenment philosophers. The others who follow are Rousseau, Jefferson and Burke.

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  • 1. MontesquieuJustice & Power, session vii
  • 2. MontesquieuJustice & Power, session vii
  • 3. Topics in This Sessioni. Introduction-The Age of the Democratic Revolutionii.Ancien Regimeiii.Enlightenmentiv.Montesquieu’s Educationv.Montesquieu’s Careervi.De l’esprit des lois, 1748vii.Criticism
  • 4. IntroductionThe Age of the Democratic Revolution
  • 5. IntroductionThe Age of the Democratic Revolution
  • 6. Newton’s Principia is commonly taken to divide the first andsecond phases of the Scientific Revolution•. Justice & Power, p. 29
  • 7. Newton’s Principia is commonly taken to divide the first andsecond phases of the Scientific Revolution•. Justice & Power, p. 29
  • 8. Newton’s Principia is commonly taken to divide the first andsecond phases of the Scientific Revolution•. For a century and ahalf before 1687 the “new learning” had spread and gainedmomentum. Then, after giving birth to calculus and Newtonianmechanics, the Revolution entered a period of consolidationcalled the Enlightenment. The next century saw diverse andwidespread attempts to apply the new theories to increasewealth, comfort, and happiness. New attention was focused onthe “soft” social sciences, whereas the focus had previously beenupon the “hard” physical sciences. Justice & Power, p. 29
  • 9. Newton’s Principia is commonly taken to divide the first andsecond phases of the Scientific Revolution•. For a century and ahalf before 1687 the “new learning” had spread and gainedmomentum. Then, after giving birth to calculus and Newtonianmechanics, the Revolution entered a period of consolidationcalled the Enlightenment. The next century saw diverse andwidespread attempts to apply the new theories to increasewealth, comfort, and happiness. New attention was focused onthe “soft” social sciences, whereas the focus had previously beenupon the “hard” physical sciences. Justice & Power, p. 29
  • 10. In this chapter we will consider together four disparaterepresentatives of Enlightenment thought. A major concern ofthis part of the course will be to see America’s foundation in thecontext of Western Civilization. The ideas which “[impelled us]to the separation,” natural rights, government by consent,sovereignty of the people, and separation of powers, all wereperfectly familiar in Europe during the Enlightenment. AsRobert Palmer• suggests...
  • 11. In this chapter we will consider together four disparaterepresentatives of Enlightenment thought. A major concern ofthis part of the course will be to see America’s foundation in thecontext of Western Civilization. The ideas which “[impelled us]to the separation,” natural rights, government by consent,sovereignty of the people, and separation of powers, all wereperfectly familiar in Europe during the Enlightenment. AsRobert Palmer• suggests, “the most distinctive work of the[American] Revolution was in finding a method, and furnishinga model, for putting these ideas into practical effect.” (The Ageof the Democratic Revolution, vol. i, p. 214)
  • 12. In this chapter we will consider together four disparaterepresentatives of Enlightenment thought. A major concern ofthis part of the course will be to see America’s foundation in thecontext of Western Civilization. The ideas which “[impelled us]to the separation,” natural rights, government by consent,sovereignty of the people, and separation of powers, all wereperfectly familiar in Europe during the Enlightenment. AsRobert Palmer• suggests, “the most distinctive work of the[American] Revolution was in finding a method, and furnishinga model, for putting these ideas into practical effect.” (The Ageof the Democratic Revolution, vol. i, p. 214)
  • 13. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century.
  • 14. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon, Ulster,and Uganda.• [Today, 2012, we may substitute jihad andsouthern Sudan as examples] How widespread the new faith inReason was can be argued. Certainly ignorance and superstitionhad their disciples. But there is no denying that scientificprogress did fire the imagination of many.
  • 15. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon...
  • 16. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon,Ulster, ....
  • 17. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon,Ulster, ...
  • 18. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon, Ulster,and Uganda.• [Today, 2012, we may substitute jihad andsouthern Sudan as examples] How widespread the new faith inReason was can be argued. Certainly ignorance and superstitionhad their disciples. But there is no denying that scientificprogress did fire the imagination of many.
  • 19. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon, Ulster,and Uganda.• ...
  • 20. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon, Ulster,and Uganda.• [Today, 2012, we may substitute jihad andsouthern Sudan as examples] How widespread the new faith inReason was can be argued. Certainly ignorance and superstitionhad their disciples. But there is no denying that scientificprogress did fire the imagination of many.
  • 21. Tendencies to attack traditional authorities like Aristotle and theChurch• were manifested as early as the sixteenth century. Bythe eighteenth century the trickle of scepticism had become aflood. Even Spain finally had to give up burning heretics.• Inone sense this “rise of modern paganism” was part of thestalemate after two centuries of religious wars. Toleration andfreedom from dogmatism created deism as preferable to the typeof sectarian slaughter displayed today [1977] in Lebanon, Ulster,and Uganda.• [Today, 2012, we may substitute jihad andsouthern Sudan as examples] How widespread the new faith inReason was can be argued. Certainly ignorance and superstitionhad their disciples. But there is no denying that scientificprogress did fire the imagination of many.
  • 22. The [famous] historian Georges Lefebvre [1874-1959] linksthe Enlightenment to class. The temper of the bourgeoisie...had differed since the beginning from that of the warrior or the priest….Experimental rationalism had laid the foundations of modern science and in the eighteenth century promised to embrace all man’s activity. It armed the bourgeoisie with a new philosophy which, especially in France, encouraged class consciousness and a bold inventive spirit. (The French Revolution, p. 54)This should not blind us to the fact that some of the mostfamous philosophes were aristocrats like Montesquieu, someself-imposed exiles from society like Rousseau, naturalaristocrats like Jefferson, or gentry like Burke.
  • 23. The [famous] historian Georges Lefebvre [1874-1959]• linksthe Enlightenment to class. The temper of the bourgeoisie...had differed since the beginning from that of the warrior or the priest….Experimental rationalism had laid the foundations of modern science and in the eighteenth century promised to embrace all man’s activity. It armed the bourgeoisie with a new philosophy which, especially in France, encouraged class consciousness and a bold inventive spirit. (The French Revolution, p. 54)•This should not blind us to the fact that some of the mostfamous philosophes were aristocrats like Montesquieu, ...
  • 24. The [famous] historian Georges Lefebvre [1874-1959]• linksthe Enlightenment to class. The temper of the bourgeoisie...had differed since the beginning from that of the warrior or the priest….Experimental rationalism had laid the foundations of modern science and in the eighteenth century promised to embrace all man’s activity. It armed the bourgeoisie with a new philosophy which, especially in France, encouraged class consciousness and a bold inventive spirit. (The French Revolution, p. 54)•This should not blind us to the fact that some of the mostfamous philosophes were aristocrats like Montesquieu, someself-imposed exiles from society like Rousseau, ...
  • 25. The [famous] historian Georges Lefebvre [1874-1959]• linksthe Enlightenment to class. The temper of the bourgeoisie...had differed since the beginning from that of the warrior or the priest….Experimental rationalism had laid the foundations of modern science and in the eighteenth century promised to embrace all man’s activity. It armed the bourgeoisie with a new philosophy which, especially in France, encouraged class consciousness and a bold inventive spirit. (The French Revolution, p. 54)•This should not blind us to the fact that some of the mostfamous philosophes were aristocrats like Montesquieu, someself-imposed exiles from society like Rousseau, naturalaristocrats like Jefferson, or gentry...
  • 26. The [famous] historian Georges Lefebvre [1874-1959]• linksthe Enlightenment to class. The temper of the bourgeoisie...had differed since the beginning from that of the warrior or the priest….Experimental rationalism had laid the foundations of modern science and in the eighteenth century promised to embrace all man’s activity. It armed the bourgeoisie with a new philosophy which, especially in France, encouraged class consciousness and a bold inventive spirit. (The French Revolution, p. 54)•This should not blind us to the fact that some of the mostfamous philosophes were aristocrats like Montesquieu•,some self-imposed exiles from society like Rousseau•,natural aristocrats like Jefferson, or gentry like Burke.
  • 27. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke ...
  • 28. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists...
  • 29. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists like Jefferson and Rousseau...
  • 30. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists like Jefferson and Rousseau.The degree of bitterness with which critics denounced thestatus quo varied widely also. Montesquieu and Burke werebasically enlightened aristocratic reformers who believed thatpopular sovereignty was a dangerous seducement.
  • 31. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists like Jefferson and Rousseau•.The degree of bitterness with which critics denounced thestatus quo varied widely also. Montesquieu and Burke• werebasically enlightened aristocratic reformers who believed thatpopular sovereignty was a dangerous seducement. Rousseauand Jefferson would not settle for half a revolutionary loaf..
  • 32. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists like Jefferson and Rousseau.The degree of bitterness with which critics denounced thestatus quo varied widely also. Montesquieu and Burke werebasically enlightened aristocratic reformers who believed thatpopular sovereignty was a dangerous seducement. Rousseauand Jefferson would not settle for half a revolutionary loaf.When we apply the criteria of optimism, faith in progress, andthe perfectibility of man, we find different pairs. Jefferson andMontesquieu looked to the future with the greatest confidence.
  • 33. Enlightenment thought on the nature of the state was broadenough to include organic theorists like Montesquieu andBurke and also instrumentalists like Jefferson and Rousseau.The degree of bitterness with which critics denounced thestatus quo varied widely also. Montesquieu and Burke werebasically enlightened aristocratic reformers who believed thatpopular sovereignty was a dangerous seducement. Rousseauand Jefferson would not settle for half a revolutionary loaf.When we apply the criteria of optimism, faith in progress, andthe perfectibility of man, we find different pairs. Jefferson andMontesquieu looked to the future with the greatest confidence.Burke and Rousseau both suspected conventional notions ofprogress.
  • 34. By the end of the eighteenth century events forced men tochoose. Men either sided with Rousseau and Jefferson insharing “...a new feeling for a kind of equality, or at least adiscomfort with older forms of social stratification” inPalmer’s succinct description of the Democratic Revolution’score. (Democratic Revolution, p. 4). Or, men recoiled from theforces which events had called forth and sought conservativechecks on the power unleashed from the depths of society.
  • 35. As you review the history and read the excerpts from thisdecisive period, remember that the issues which these men arguedare not closed, not settled once and for all. When Franklin wasleaving the Philadelphia Convention in September, 1787...
  • 36. As you review the history and read the excerpts from thisdecisive period, remember that the issues which these men arguedare not closed, not settled once and for all. When Franklin wasleaving the Philadelphia Convention in September, 1787, a ladyasked him what form of government they had settled upon behindclosed doors. The answer was “A Republic, Madam, if you cankeep it.” As the Greeks knew only too well, democracy has ahabit of giving way to tyranny.
  • 37. Ancien Regime
  • 38. Ancien Regime
  • 39. II. Ancien Regime A. aristocracy B. Huguenots 1. Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, 1695 2. anti-clericalism 3. ecrasez l’enfame- Voltaire
  • 40. “...gilded butterflies…”--King Lear, v, 3
  • 41. nobles vs aristocrats In 18th century France both these terms were used for the Second EstateBut by this time many distinctions had developed within the group whichconstituted perhaps the top 1.5- 2 % of the 24-28 million citizens of France. Thenewer term, aristocrat, implied not only noble birth but also “liberal education,refined manners, punctilious courtesy and the nicest sense of personalhonor” (John Paul Jones’ definition of a naval officer). T broad divisions woexisted: noblesse d’épée (...of the sword) and ...de robe (the lawyers ennobled asjudges). Montesquieu’s family qualified under both.The range of personal wealthvaried greatly. Some of the poorest, called hobireaux, were less well off thansome peasant proprietors!It was said the the king could create a noble with the touch of his sword but thatit took three generations to create an aristocrat. Again, Montesquieu qualifiedunder both definitions. jbp
  • 42. II.B. Huguenots-French Protestants1. Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, 1695. “Good King”Henri iv had granted the Huguenots limited religious toleration in this edict in 1598•. Louis xiv felt strong enough to revoke it. As late as the 1780s Protestant clergy were condemned to row in the galleys of Toulon
  • 43. II.B. Huguenots-French ProtestantsThe original edict of 1598 which had guaranteed limited religious freedom
  • 44. II.B. Huguenots-French Protestants1. Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, 1695. “Good King”Henri iv had granted the Huguenots limited religious toleration in this edict in 1598•. Louis xiv felt strong enough to revoke it. As late as the 1780s Protestant clergy were condemned to row in the galleys of Toulon2. As the Enlightenment began to sway the literate upper classes, a wave of hostility towards the Church and its privileged position turned into anti- clericalism
  • 45. II.B. Huguenots-French Protestants1. Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, 1695. “Good King”Henri iv had granted the Huguenots limited religious toleration in this edict in 1598•. Louis xiv felt strong enough to revoke it. As late as the 1780s Protestant clergy were condemned to row in the galleys of Toulon2. As the Enlightenment began to sway the literate upper classes, a wave of hostility towards the Church and its privileged position turned into anti- clericalism3. most famous was Voltaire’s "écrasez linfâme", or "crush the infamous". The phrase refers to abuses of the people by royalty and the clergy that Voltaire saw around him, and the superstition and intolerance that the clergy bred within the people.”--Wikipedia
  • 46. EnlightenmentA Philosopher giving a Lecture on the Orrery in which a lamp is put in place of the Sun painting by Joseph Wright of Derby, ca 1766
  • 47. A Philosopher giving a Lecture on the Orrery in which a lamp is put in place of the Sun painting by Joseph Wright of Derby, ca 1766
  • 48. III. Enlightenment - l’ eclairement A. Pope’s couplet B. applications 1. clocks 2. industrial revolution 3. social science C. Denis Diderot’s Encyclopedie, 1751-72 1. contributors 2. themes a. philosophy b. theology c. social theory d. political theory
  • 49. III.A.-Pope’s couplet"Nature and Natures laws lay hid in night;God said, Let Newton be! and all was light."
  • 50. III.A.-Pope’s couplet "Nature and Natures laws lay hid in night; God said, Let Newton be! and all was light.""Let there be light" is an English translation of the Hebrew ‫( יְהִי אֹור‬yehiy or). Other translations ofthe same phrase include the Latin phrase fiat lux, and the Greek phrase γενηθήτω φῶς (orgenēthētō phōs). The phrase is often used for its metaphorical meaning of dispelling ignorance.The phrase comes from the third verse of the Book of Genesis. In the King James Bible, it reads, incontext:1:1 - In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.1:2 - And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And theSpirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.1:3 - And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.1:4 - And God saw the light, and it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. Wikipedia
  • 51. III.A.-Pope’s coupletThe phrase "Let there be light" used metaphorically over the door of a Carnegie library, in Edinburgh
  • 52. hence, the EnlightenmentAufklärung, Ger. = cf., clarification, clearing upéclairement, Fr.просвещение, (pros•vesh•CHENIE)Russ. = fromCBET, “light,” a “bringing to light”
  • 53. III.B. Applications1. clocks 1. A major stimulus to improving the accuracy and reliability of clocks was the importance of precise time- keeping for navigation. The position of a ship at sea could be determined with reasonable accuracy if a navigator could refer to a clock that lost or gained less than about 10 seconds per day. This clock could not contain a pendulum, which would be virtually useless on a rocking ship. Many European governments offered a large prize for anyone who could determine longitude accurately; for example, Great Britain offered 20,000 pounds, equivalent to millions of dollars today. The reward was eventually claimed in 1761 by John Harrison, who dedicated his life to improving the accuracy of his clocks. His H5 clock was in error by less than 5 seconds over 10 weeks.
  • 54. III.B. Applications
  • 55. 18th century exploring the globe-greatlyaided by chronometers, better chart-making & navigation Vitus Bering (1681-1741) Danish explorer who explored Siberia and Alaska for Russia Carl Linnaeus (1708-1778)- Swedish biologist. his six-month expedition to Lapland in 1732 described about 100 previously unknown plants Juan José Pérez Hernández (1725-1775) Spanish explorer, the first to chart the American Pacific Northwest James Cook (1728-1779) British naval commander. Explored much of the Pacific including New Zealand, Australia and Hawaii Alexander MacKenzie (1764-1820) Scottish-Canadian explorer who in 1789, looking for the Northwest Passage, followed the river now named for him to the Arctic Ocean and then in 1793 crossed the Rockies and reached the Pacific, thus beating Lewis and Clark by 12 years
  • 56. 18th century exploring the globe-greatlyaided by chronometers, better chart-making & navigation Vitus Bering (1681-1741) Danish explorer who explored Siberia and Alaska for Russia Carl Linnaeus (1708-1778)- Swedish biologist. his six-month expedition to Lapland in 1732 described about 100 previously unknown plants Juan José Pérez Hernández (1725-1775) Spanish explorer, the first to chart the American Pacific Northwest James Cook (1728-1779) British naval commander. Explored much of the Pacific including New Zealand, Australia and Hawaii Alexander MacKenzie (1764-1820) Scottish-Canadian explorer who in 1789, looking for the Northwest Passage, followed the river now named for him to the Arctic Ocean and then in 1793 crossed the Rockies and reached the Pacific, thus beating Lewis and Clark by 12 years A general map of the world by Samuel Dunn, 1794
  • 57. III.B. Applications1. clocks2.industrial revolution 1. not simply a story of machinery
  • 58. III.B. Applications1. clocks2.industrial revolution 1. not simply a story of machinery Watt’s steam engine, 1763-1775
  • 59. III.B. Applications1. clocks2.industrial revolution 1. not simply a story of machinery Watt’s steam engine, 1763-1775 2. an Agricultural Revolution freed up cheap urban labor 3. the revolution began in Britain, where there was a special case of Enlightenment-based advantages: 1. peace, stability & no trade barriers after the 1708 unification of England & Scotland 2. rule of law permitting sanctity of contracts and joint-stock contracts 3. infrastructure of canals & coastal shipping 4. new energy sources (water & coal--> steam) replaced human and animal power 5. an established textile industry which satisfied “man’s second basic need”
  • 60. III.B. Applications1. clocks2.industrial revolution3. social science 1. Cesare Beccaria (1738-1794) his reading of Montesquieu led him to the field of penology 2. His “On Crimes and Punishments” (1764)
  • 61. III.B. Applications1. clocks2.industrial revolution3. social science 1. Cesare Beccaria (1738-1794) his reading of Montesquieu led him to the field of penology 2. His “On Crimes and Punishments” (1764) 1. punishment had a deterrent, as well as a retributive, function 2. punishment should be proportionate to the crime 3. the certainty of punishment, not its severity, would achieve the preventive effect 4. procedures should be public 5. in order to be effective, punishment must be prompt
  • 62. Montesquieu’s Education
  • 63. Charles-Louis de Secondat, baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu 1689 – 1755
  • 64. IV. Montesquieu’s Education A. classics 1. Stoicism B. law - social determinism 1. parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-26 a. quasi-executive b. quasi-judicial
  • 65. IV.A.-classics 1. Stoicism Marcus Aurelius, the Stoic Emperor, 121-180 A.D.
  • 66. IV.A.-classics 1. Stoicism Philosophy for a Stoic is not just a set of beliefs or ethical claims, it is a way of life involving constant practice and training or askesis. Stoic philosophical and spiritual practices included logic, Socratic dialog and self-dialog, contemplation of death, training attention to remain in the present moment (similar to some forms of Eastern meditation), daily reflection on everyday problems and possible solutions, hypomnemata*, and so on. Philosophy for a Stoic is an active process of constant practice and self-reminder. In his Meditations, Marcus Aurelius defines several such practices. For example, in Book II, part 1: Say to yourself in the early morning: I shall meet today ungrateful, violent, treacherous, envious, uncharitable men. All of these things have come upon them through ignorance of real good and ill... I can neither be harmed by any of them, for no man will involve me in wrong, nor can I be angry with my kinsman or hate him; for we have come into the world to work together… Wikipedia * written notes to “remember” important thoughts
  • 67. IV.B.-law-social determinism 1. Parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-1726 He was born [in 1689] at the Château de la Brède in the southwest of France. Wikipedia
  • 68. IV.B.-law-social determinism 1. Parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-1726 He was born [in 1689] at the Château de la Brède• in the southwest of France. His father, Jacques de Secondat, was a soldier with a long noble ancestry. His mother, Marie Françoise de Pesnel who died when Charles de Secondat was seven, was a female inheritor of a large monetary inheritance who brought the title of barony of La Brède to the Secondat family. After having studied at the Catholic College of Juilly, Charles-Louis de Secondat married. His wife, Jeanne de Lartigue, a Protestant, brought him a substantial dowry when he was 26. The next year, he inherited a fortune upon the death of his uncle, as well as the title Baron de Montesquieu and Président à Mortier in the Parliament of Bordeaux•. Wikipedia La Brède
  • 69. IV.B.-law-social determinism 1. Parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-1726 He was born [in 1689] at the Château de la Brède in the southwest of France. His father, Jacques de Secondat, was a soldier with a long noble ancestry. His mother, Marie Françoise de Pesnel who died when Charles de Secondat was seven, was a female inheritor of a large monetary inheritance who brought the title of barony of La Brède to the Secondat family. After having studied at the Catholic College of Juilly, Charles-Louis de Secondat married. His wife, Jeanne de Lartigue, a Protestant, brought him a substantial dowry when he was 26. The next year, he inherited a fortune upon the death of his uncle, as well as the title Baron de Montesquieu and Président à Mortier in the Parliament of Bordeaux. Wikipedia
  • 70. IV.B.-law-social determinism 1. Parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-1726 a. quasi-executive b. quasi-judicial Bordeaux
  • 71. IV.B.-law-social determinism 1. Parlement of Bordeaux, 1716-1726 a. quasi-executive b. quasi-judicial Parlement were a medieval body controlled by the French nobility which, by the 18th century, were local arms of the royal power. They supervised the king’s orders to the local regions of France and also served as courts in certain cases. jbp
  • 72. Montesquieu’s Career
  • 73. Montesquieu’s CareerA 19th century picture of the French Academy
  • 74. V. Montesquieu’s Career 1. “man of letters” 2. salon society 3. Persian Letters, 1721 4. LAcadémie française 1726-no, 1728-yes 5. travels in England, 1729-31 a. Lord Chesterfield b. Royal Society c. Voltaire’s experience 6. Considerations on the Greatness and Decline of Rome, 1734
  • 75. V.1- “man of letters”Men of lettersThe term "Man of Letters" ("belletrist", from the French belles-lettres), has beenused in some Western cultures to denote contemporary intellectual men; theterm rarely denotes "scholars", and is not synonymous with "academic".Originally the term implied a distinction between the literate and the illiterate,which carried great weight when literacy was rare. It also denoted the literati(Latin, plural of literatus), the "citizens of the Republic of Letters" inseventeenth- and eighteenth-century France, where it evolved into the salon,usually run by women.” Wikipedia
  • 76. V.2 -salon society
  • 77. V.2 -salon society VoltaireAnciet Charles Gabriel Lemonnier (1743-1824): Madame Geo!ins salon in 1755, painted in 1812
  • 78. V.3 - Persian Letters, 1721at age 32, he became a European celebrity with thisbombshell, published anonymously in Geneva“Through the letters of two imaginary Persian visitorsto Paris, he showed the reactions of unprejudicedobservers to the irrationalities and imperfections ofthe western world“...the device enabled him to comment on taboos thatwould otherwise be too delicate to handle[its sexual content added to its popularity]“[he] satirized the Roman Catholic Church …“...the pope is described as a magician who makesbelieve ‘that three are one, that the bread one eats isnot bread…’“the clergy…’a society of persons who always take,and never give.’ “--Ebenstein, p. 415
  • 79. V.4-LAcadémie françaiseIn 1726 Montesquieu was proposed--at an unusually earlyage [37]--for membership in the French Academy, butking Louis XV objected. In 1728 he was able to win entryinto the ranks of the “immortals” in French letters. During that same year he set out on his travels, whichtook him to Austria, Hungary, Italy, Switzerland, Germany,and Holland; from Holland, in the fall of 1729, he went toEngland, where he stayed until the spring of 1731. Ebenstein, p.p. 415-416
  • 80. V.5 - Travels in England, 1729-1731 a. Montesquieu was the house guest of this famous luminary of the British Enlightenment. They had met in the Netherlands where Lord Chesterfield had been the British ambassador Philip Dormer Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield, PC, KG 1694 – 1773 a British statesman and man of letters
  • 81. V.5.a.- Lord ChesterfieldAmong the quotations attributed to him are:• "The world is a country which nobody ever yet knew by description; one must travelthrough it ones self to be acquainted with it."• "An able man shows his spirit by gentle words and resolute actions."• "I recommend you to take care of the minutes, for the hours will take care of themselves."• "Firmness of purpose is one of the most necessary sinews of character, and one of thebest instruments of success. Without it, genius wastes its efforts in a maze ofinconsistencies."• "The scholar, without good breeding, is a pedant; the philosopher, a cynic; the soldier, abrute; and every man disagreeable." Wikipedia
  • 82. V.5 - Travels in England, 1729-1731 a. Montesquieu was the house guest of this famous luminary of the British Enlightenment. They had met in the Netherlands where Lord Chesterfield had been the British ambassador b. as Montesquieu visited the country estates of his fellow aristocrats, he gained backers who voted to make him a member of the Royal Society Philip Dormer Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield, PC, KG 1694 – 1773 a British statesman and man of letters
  • 83. V.5 - Travels in England, 1729-1731a. Montesquieu was the house guest of this famous luminary of the English Enlightenment. They had met in the Netherlands where Lord Chesterfield had been the British ambassadorb. as Montesquieu visited the country estates of his fellow aristocrats, he gained backers who made him a member of the Royal Societyc. 1726-28-Voltaire had been charged by the noble Rohan family in a lettre de cachet. He asked to have his imprisonment in the François-Marie Arouet Bastille commuted to exile in England. Thus 1694 – 1778 began his attempts to reform the French known by his nom de plume judicial system. His experience of England, Voltaire albeit from a less exalted station, also convinced him that France had a great deal to learn from their ancient foe
  • 84. V.6- Considerations on the Greatness and Decline of Rome, 1734Montesquieu returned to France in 1731, full of ideas and projects for futurebooks. In 1734 he published his Considerations on the Greatness and Decline ofRome. Roman history was a convenient starting point for his favorite theories,soon to be developed more fully. Speaking of the capacity of a state to correctits own mistakes and abuses, Montesquieu mentions Rome, Carthage, Athens,and the Italian city-republics; lamenting their shortcomings in self-analysis andself-correction, he says: “ The government of England is wiser, because there isa body [Parliament] which examines it continuously and continuously examinesitself; its errors never last long, and are often useful because of the spirit ofattention they give to the people. In a word, a free government, that is, one thatis always agitated, cannot be maintained if it is not capable of correctionthrough its own laws.” Ebenstein, p. 416
  • 85. In both Persian Letters and Considerations…, Montesquieu wasable to evade the pervasive government censorship of his time.Voltaire and many other of the philosophes would be jailed for theirpublications. But Montesquieu took swipes at the oppressive régimeof French absolutism in “coded” ways which his audienceunderstood but which could be denied if challenged by the censors. The “Persians” often lamented the absolutism of Persia. Thecriticism of the Roman emperors was easily seen as an indictment ofsimilar French royal abuses. jbp
  • 86. De l’esprit des lois 1748
  • 87. De l’esprit des lois A first edition offered recently 1748 at $11,000
  • 88. MONTESQUIEUDe l’esprit des lois, 1748Thomas Nugent, trans., 1752. Cincinnati: Robert. Clarke & Co., 1873. BOOK I OF LAWS IN GENERAL CHAP. II - Of the Laws of Nature Antecedent to the [man-made] laws are those of nature, so called, because they derivetheir force entirely from our frame and existence. In order to have a perfect knowledgeof these laws, we must consider man before the establishment of society: the lawsreceived in such a state would be those of nature. ….Such a man would feel nothing in himself at first but impotency and weakness; hisfears and apprehensions would be excessive; as appears from instances 9were there anynecessity of proving it) of savages found in forests, trembling at the motion of a leaf,and flying at every shadow. In this state every man, instead of being sensible of his equality, would fancy himselfinferior. There would therefore be no danger of their attacking one another; peace wouldbe the first law of nature. (cont.)
  • 89. In this state every man, instead of being sensible of his equality, would fancy himselfinferior. There would therefore be no danger of their attacking one another; peace wouldbe the first law of nature. (cont.) The natural impulse or desire which Hobbes attributes to mankind of subduing oneanother, is far from being well-founded. The idea of empire and dominion is socomplex, and depends on so many other notions, that it could never be the first whichoccurred to human understanding. Hobbes inquires, “For what reason men go armed, and have locks and keys to fastentheir doors, if they be not naturally in a state of war?” But is it not obvious, that heattributes to mankind before the establishment of society, what can happen but inconsequence of this establishment, which furnishes them with motives for hostileattacks and self defense. Next to a sense of his weakness man would soon find that of his wants. Henceanother law of nature would prompt him to seek for nourishment. Fear, I have observed, would induce men to shun one another; but the marks of thisfear being reciprocal, would soon engage them to associate. Besides, this associationwould quickly follow from the very pleasure one animal feels at the approach of anotherof the same species Again, the attraction arising from the difference of sexes wouldenhance this pleasure; and the natural inclination they have for each other, would form athird law. ….and a fourth law of nature results from the desire of living in society.
  • 90. VI. De l’esprit des lois, 1748 1.monarchy, republic, and despotism 2. separation of powers 3. role of the aristocracy 4. geopolitics and social sciences
  • 91. remember Aristotle’s taxonomy?
  • 92. Montesquieu’s is similar, yet simpler: despotism republic
  • 93. What happened to government by the few? Montesquieu sees the aristocracy, his own class, as having a significant part to play in both the “good” kinds of governments: monarchy and republics. This role will be described below.
  • 94. VI. 1. monarchy, republic, and despotism BOOK II OF LAWS IN DIRECTLY DERIVED FROM THE NATURE OF GOVERNMENT CHAP. I - Of the Nature of the three different Governments THERE are three species of government: republican, monarchial, and despotic. Inorder to discover their nature, it is sufficient to recollect the common notion, whichsupposes three definitions, or rather three facts: that a republican government is that inwhich the body, or only a part of the people, is possessed of the supreme power:monarchy, that in which a single person governs by fixed and established laws: adespotic government, that in which a single person directs every thing by his own willand caprice. This is what I call the nature of each government; we must now enquire into thoselaws which directly conform to this nature, and consequently are the fundamentalinstitutions.
  • 95. VI. 1. monarchy, republic, and despotism (cont.) CHAP. II - Of the Republican Government, and the Laws relative to Democracy When the body of the people is possessed of the supreme power, this is calleddemocracy. When the supreme power is lodged in the hands of a part of the people, it isthen an aristocracy. In a democracy the people are in some respects the sovereign, in others the subject. There can be no exercise of sovereignty but by their suffrages, which are their ownwill; now the sovereign’s will is the sovereign himself…. The people, in whom the supreme power resides, ought to have the management ofevery thing within their reach: what exceeds their abilities, must be conducted by theirministers…. The people are extremely well qualified for choosing those whom they are to entrustwith part of their authority….But are they capable of conducting an intricate affair, ofseizing and improving the opportunity and critical moment of action? No; this surpassestheir abilities.
  • 96. VI. 1. monarchy, republic, and despotism (cont.) BOOK III OF THE PRINCIPLES OF THE THREE KINDS OF GOVERNMENT CHAP. I - Difference between the Nature and Principle of Government. After having examined the laws relative to the nature of each government, we mustinvestigate those which relate to its principle. There is this difference between the nature and principle of government: that theformer is that by which it is constituted, the latter that by which it is made to act. One isits particular structure, the other the human passions which set it in motion. Now, laws ought to be no less relative to the principle than to the nature of eachgovernment. We must, therefore, inquire into the principle, which shall be the subject ofthis third book.
  • 97. VI. 1. monarchy, republic, and despotism (cont.) CHAP. II -Of the Principle of different Governments. I have already observed, that it is the nature of a republican government, that eitherthe collective body of the people, or particular families, should be possessed of thesupreme power; of a monarchy, that the prince…of a despotic government….Thisenables me to discover their three principles; which are naturally derived from thence. Ishall begin with republican government; and in particular with that of democracy. CHAP. III -Of the Principle of Democracy. There is no great share of probity necessary to support a monarchial or despoticgovernment. The force of laws in one, and the prince’s arm in the other, are sufficient todirect and maintain the whole. But in a popular state, one spring more is necessary,namely virtue….
  • 98. VI. 1. monarchy, republic, and despotism (cont.) CHAP. IX -Of the Principle of despotic Government. As virtue is necessary in a republic, and in a monarchy honour, so fear is necessaryin a despotic government: with regard to virtue, there is no occasion for it, and honourwould be extremely dangerous. Here the immense power of the prince is devolved entirely upon those whom he ispleased to entrust with the administration. Persons capable of setting a value uponthemselves, would likely create disturbances. Fear must therefore depress their spirits,and extinguish the least sense of ambition. A moderate government may, whenever it pleases, and without the least danger,relax its springs. It supports itself by the laws, and by its own internal strength. Butwhen a despotic prince ceases one single moment to lift up his arm...all is over: for, asfear, the spring of this government, no longer subsists, the people are left without aprotector.
  • 99. VI. 2. separation of powers BOOK XI OF LAWS WHICH ESTABLISH POLITICAL LIBERTY, WITH REGARD TO THE CONSTITUTION CHAP. III - In what Liberty consists It is true, that in democracies the people seem to act as they please; but politicalliberty does not consist in an unlimited freedom. In governments, that is, in societiesdirected by laws, liberty can consist only in the power of doing what we ought to will,and in not being constrained to do what we ought not to will. We must have continually present to our minds the difference betweenindependence and liberty. Liberty is the right od doing whatever the laws permit; andif a citizen could do what they forbid, he would no longer possess liberty, because allhis fellow-citizens would have the same power. CHAP. IV - The same Subject continued Democratic and aristocratic states are not in their own nature free. Political liberty isto be found only in moderate governments; and even in these, it is not always found. Itis there only when there is no abuse of power; but constant experience shews us...(cont).
  • 100. VI. 2. separation of powers (cont.) CHAP. IV - The same Subject continued Democratic and aristocratic states are not in their own nature free. Political liberty isto be found only in moderate governments; and even in these, it is not always found. Itis there only when there is no abuse of power; but constant experience shews us...(cont.)that every man invested in power is apt to abuse it, and to carry his authority as far as itwill go. Is it not strange, though true, to say, that virtue itself has need of limits? To prevent this abuse, it is necessary from the very nature of things, power should be acheck to power. A government may be so constituted, as no man shall be compelled todo things to which the law does not oblige him,nor forced to abstain from things whichthe law permits. CHAP. V - Of the End or View of Different Governments Though all governments have the same general end, which is that of preservation, yeteach has another particular object. Increase of dominion was the object of Rome; war,that of Sparta; religion, that of the Jewish laws; commerce, that of Marseilles; publictranquility, that of the laws of China; navigation, that of the laws of Rhodes; naturalliberty, that of the policy of the Savages; in general, the pleasures of the prince, that ofdespotic states; that of monarchies, the prince’s and the kingdom’s glory…. (cont.)
  • 101. VI. 2. separation of powers (cont.) CHAP. V - Of the End or View of Different Governments (cont.) despotic states; that of monarchies, the prince’s and the kingdom’s glory…. (cont.) One nation there is also in the world [Britain-jbp], that has for the direct end of itsconstitution, political liberty. We shall presently examine the principles on which thisliberty is founded; if they are sound, liberty will appear in its highest perfection. To discover political liberty in a constitution, no great labour is requisite. If we arecapable of seeing it where it exists, it is soon found, and we need not go far in search ofit. CHAP. VI - Of the Constitution of England In every government there are three sorts of power: the legislative; the executive, inrespect to things dependent on the law of nations [foreign policy-jbp]; and theexecutive, in regard to matters that depend on civil law. By virtue of the first, the prince or magistrate enacts temporary or perpetuallaws….By the second, he makes peace or war….By the third, he punishes criminals, ordetermines the disputes that arise between individuals. The latter we shall call thejudiciary power, and the other simply the executive power of the state….
  • 102. VI. 2. separation of powers (cont.) CHAP. VI - Of the Constitution of England (cont.) When the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person, orin the same body of magistrates, there can be no liberty; because apprehensionsmay arise, lest the same monarch or senate should enact tyrannical laws, toexecute them in a tyrannical manner. Again, there is no liberty if the judiciary power be not separated from thelegislative and executive. Were it joined with the legislative, the life and libertyof the subject would be exposed to arbitrary control; for the judge would thenbe legislator. Were it joined to the executive power, the judge might behavewith violence and oppression. There would be an end of every thing, were the same man, or the samebody, whether of the nobles or of the people, to exercise those three powers,that of enacting laws, that of executing the public resolutions, and of trying thecauses of individuals….
  • 103. VI. 3. role of the aristocracy was that of the “makeweight.”
  • 104. If the people became too powerful... ARISTOCRACY KING PEOPLE they would ally with the king to bring “balance”
  • 105. If the people became too powerful... KING & ARISTOCRACY PEOPLE they would ally with the king to bring “balance”
  • 106. If the king became too powerful... PEOPLE & ARISTOCRACY KINGthey would ally with the people to bring “balance”
  • 107. VI. 3. role of the aristocracy (cont.) CHAP. VI - Of the Constitution of England (cont.) ...there are always persons distinguished by their birth, riches, or honours:but were they to be confounded with the common people, and to have only theweight of a single vote like the rest, the common liberty would be their slavery,and they would have no interest in supporting it, as most of the popularresolutions would be against them. The share they have, therefore, in thelegislature ought to be proportioned to their other advantages in the state;which only happens when they form a body [House of Lords-jbp] that has aright to check the licentiousness of the people, as the people have a right tooppose any encroachment of theirs The legislative power is therefore to the body of the nobles, and to thatwhich represents the people [House of Commons-jbp], each having theirassemblies and deliberations apart, each their separate views and interests.
  • 108. VI. 3. role of the aristocracy (cont.) Because Montesquieu was living in a censorious monarchy, he didn’tmake the second case (the aristocracy siding with the people) explicit. But people in those days were used to “reading between the lines.” And so, the second case was there for all to see it. jbp
  • 109. VI. 4. geopolitics and social sciences BOOK XIV OF LAWS AS RELATIVE TO THE NATURE OF THE CLIMATE CHAP. I - General Idea. If it be true that the temper of the mind, and the passions of the heart are extremelydifferent in different climates, the laws ought to be relative both to the variety of thosepassions, and to the variety of those tempers. CHAP. II - Of the Difference of Men in different Climates A cold air constringes the extremities of the external fibers of the body; thisincreases their elasticity, and favours the return of the blood from the extreme parts ofthe heart. It contracts those very fibers; consequently it increases also their force. Onthe contrary a warm air relaxes and lengthens the extremes of the fibers; of course itdiminishes their force and elasticity. (cont.)
  • 110. VI. 4. geopolitics and social sciences CHAP. II - Of the Difference of Men in different Climates (cont.)the contrary a warm air relaxes and lengthens the extremes of the fibers; of course itdiminishes their force and elasticity. (cont.) People are therefore more vigorous in cold climates. Here the action of the heart andthe reaction of the extremities of the fibers are better performed, the temperature of thehumours is greater, the blood moves freer towards the heart, and reciprocally the hearthas more power. This superiority of strength must produce various effects; for instance,a greater boldness, that is, more courage; a greater sense of superiority, that is, lessdesire of revenge; a greater opinion of security, that is, more frankness, less suspicion,policy, and cunning. In short, this must be productive of very different tempers. Put aman into a close warm place, and for the reasons given, he will feel a great faintness. Ifunder this circumstance you propose a bold enterprise to him, I believe you will findhim very little disposed towards it; his present weakness will throw him into adespondency; he will be afraid of every thing, being in a state of total incapacity.(cont.)
  • 111. VI. 4. geopolitics and social sciences CHAP. II - Of the Difference of Men in different Climates (cont.)despondency; he will be afraid of every thing, being in a state of total incapacity.(cont.) The inhabitants of warm countries are, like old men, timorous; the people incold countries are, like young men, brave. If we reflect on the late wars, which aremore recent in our memory, and in which we can better distinguish some particulareffects that escape us at a greater distance of time; we shall find that the northernpeople transplanted into southern regions, did not perform such exploits as theircountrymen, who, fighting in their own climate, possessed their full vigour andcourage…. In cold countries, they have very little sensibility for pleasure; in temperate countriesthey have more; in warm countries, their sensibility is exquisite. As climates aredistinguished by degrees of latitude, we might distinguish them also in some measure,by those of sensibility. I have been at the opera in England and in Italy, where I haveseen the same pieces and the same performers; and yet the same music produces suchdifferent effects on the two nations: one is so cold and phlegmatic, and the other solively and enraptured, that it seems almost inconceivable.
  • 112. Criticism
  • 113. “...The peculiar mixture of history and reason, of awareness of the pastand concern for the future, of objective observation and desire forreform, has made Montesquieu one of the most influential politicalwriters of the modern age, constantly reinterpreted, constantlyrediscovered.” Ebenstein, Great Political Thinkers, p. 419
  • 114. Nevertheless, he was limited by the reliability of his sources. Likemany of his Enlightenment contemporaries, Montesquieuregarded information about the Indians of the Americas asevidence about man “in the state of nature.”The problem was that the observations were often based onhearsay and were prejudiced by the European colonials whooften had little sympathy for their indignant and dangerous“neighbors.”Take this absurd anecdote: BOOK V, CHAP. XIII - An Idea of despotic Power When the savages of Louisiana are desirous of fruit, they cut the tree to the root, and gather the fruit. This is an emblem of despotic power. jbp
  • 115. “...The Spirit of the Laws is surely the foundation work ofmodern political sociology.”…[the ideas] migrated across the Atlantic to the colleges ofAmerica, where Scots moral philosophers were much in demand,among them the Reverend John Witherspoon, the president of theCollege of New Jersey [today, Princeton University-jbp] and theteacher of James Madison.” Alan Ryan, On Politics, p. 518
  • 116. “In the final analysis it is not easy to classify Montesquieu’spolitical philosophy. In his explicit beliefs there is a curiousmixture of hatred of clericalism and despotism, profound concernfor individual liberty, and a strong sense of aristocratic privilege,property, and class. Similarly, the implicit hypotheses of hispolitical theory are complex: his faith in reason, humanity, andprogress mark him out as a typical representative of the Age ofEnlightenment. At the same time, Montesquieu was institution-minded to the point of venerating the past, and he thereforebecame suspect with many of the philosophes.” Ebenstein, Great Political Thinkers, p. 419
  • 117. Rousseau, a near-contemporary French-speaking Genevan, likeMontesquieu, was drawn northward to Paris, the “city of lights,”the center of 18th century enlightenment.But his social origins and his sense of the need for a radical breakwith the past marked him as profoundly different from the baronde la Brede et de Montesquieu.But that’s another story... jbp

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