Huge explosion of new interpretations of the Bible.
Demonstrates a challenge to authority.
C. Scientific Revolution
The world has natural laws to explain it.
Humans, as part of nature, also have laws that govern them.
We, as humans, can use reason to discover these laws.
II. The Age of Reason
Philosophes viewed reason as the absence of intolerance and bigotry.
Through reason society could be improved and true happiness be found.
Whatever was natural was good and reasonable.
Their were laws of nature for all things.
People could use reason to discover these laws.
These natural laws could be used to explain economics, politics as well as motion.
People who live in a perfect state of nature will be happy.
Rejected idea of misery on Earth as a ticket to heaven.
Believed happiness could be achieved on earth.
Society can be improved.
Science can improve society.
Understanding of Natural laws could improve society.
Philosophes admired the liberties of the English.
Restrictions on trade, religion and speech were seen as harmful.
Through reason people could be set free.
III. The Philosophes.
Baron de Montesquieu
Jean Jacque Rousseau
A. Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679)
State of Nature is war.
Man is Self interested
Man needs a monarch to rule.
A Social Contract will exist between the people and the state.
Purpose to maintain order.
A. John Locke. (1632-1704)
Man is good, rejected idea of original sin.
Man should be Free.
Man can govern himself through reason.
Humans could improve society through reason.
Advocated idea of Social Contract.
Man had Natural Rights.
Voltaire was his pen name.
Used his writings to campaign against intolerance, injustice and prejudice.
Often is jailed for his criticisms of rulers.
Admired British system of common law.
Viewed reason as a divine force.
D. Denis Diderot
Created the First Encyclopedia.
Wanted to collect all information from leading scholars and writers.
Louis XV saw the book as a threat and and had it banned.
Diderot continued to print other copies.
Inspired Encyclopedia Britannica
E. Baron de Montesquieu
Admired the British model.
Hated French Absolutism.
Spirit of the Laws. 1748.
Separation of Powers: Each branch of government will have its own function.
Executive enforces law.
Legislative passes law
Judicial interprets law.
This creates a system of checks and balances.
Prevents any one branch from abusing its power.
F. Jean Jacques Rousseau
Wrote “The Social Contract”.
Believed everyone should be Free.
Power comes from the consent of the governed.
Civilization corrupts goodness of man.
Believed in Direct Democracy
G. Adam Smith
Free Trade and Laissez Faire
Law of Self Interest
Law of Competition
Law of Supply and Demand
H. Ben Franklin.
An American Philosophe
Poor Richards Almanac
V. Women and the Enlightenment
The role of Salons
Enlightenment on Women
A. The Role of Salons.
Acted as intellectual centers of Europe.
Poetry, stories, debate, and music.
Organized by woman.
Marie Therese Geoffrin.
Restricted to the upper class.
B. Mary Wollstonecraft
A Vindication of the Rights of Women
Opposed traditional roles for women
Confinement to roles is slavery
Critiqued other philosphes for excluding women
Broadened the debate
C. Enlightenment on Women
Most did not advocate a change for women
Montesquieu’s support was limited
Sympathetic, not revolutionary
Subordinate to male, but could divorce
Most writers emphasized the physical differences
Rousseau advocated traditional roles for women
Major Ideas of the Enlightenment Eventual women’s rights in N. America and Europe Wollstonecraft Women’s Rights Bill of Rights, reduction of Persecutions Voltaire Religious Freedom Free Trade, capitalism Adam Smith Free Trade Ideas found in many Bills of Rights Voltaire Freedom of thought and expression France, U.S. Latin America use these ideas in their Constitutions Montesquieu Separation of Powers Fundamental to ideas found in Dec. of Ind. Locke Natural Rights-Life, liberty, property Impact Thinker IDEA
With the Enlightenment:
The State becomes the common bond holding society together.
The scientist and the university educated scholar become the source of knowledge.
Natural Law and Reason, rather than revelation or the decrees of the Church become the source of moral authority.
In the methods of science, European believed they had found the source of truth.
The Enlightenment is an attempt to find the laws of human society in the same way that Newton had found the laws of nature.