His 102, Week 4, Ch 17 Notes
His 102, Week 4, Ch 17 Notes His 102
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Tessa Peak on Monday October 10, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to His 102 at Northern Virginia Community College taught by Dr. Dluger in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 28 views. For similar materials see History of Western Civilization II in History at Northern Virginia Community College.
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Date Created: 10/10/16
His 102 Notes Ch. 17: The Enlightenment A. The Foundations of the Enlightenment a. Lasted for most of the eighteenth century; some opposed everything it stood for, others accepted certain Enlightenment values but sharply rejected others b. Writings shared several basic characteristics: confidence in the powers of human reason, nature operated according to laws that could be studied and observed, represented declaration of intellectual history c. Much of the eighteenthcentury Enlightenment consisted of translating, republishing, and thinking through the implications of the great works of the seventeenth century; Enlightenment thinkers drew heavily on Locke’s studies of human knowledge d. Locke all knowledge originates from sense perception, human mind at birth is a “blank tablet”; starting point was the goodness and perfectibility of humanity e. Enlightenment thinkers sought nothing less than the organization of all knowledge; scientific method B. The World of the Philosophes a. Enlightenment thought was European in a broad sense, including southern and eastern Europe as well as Europe’s colonies in the New World b. France provided the stage for some of the most widely read Enlightenment books and most closely watched battles c. Enlightenment thinkers often called by the French word philosophes, meaning a free thinker d. Voltaire i. Voltaire best known philosophe at the time; virtually personified the Enlightenment; landed in prison and temporarily exiled from England, regularly exiled from France ii. Themes were religious and political liberty, weapons were comparisons e. Montesquieu i. Born into noble family, relatively cautious jurist but did right satirical novel ii. Work The Spirit of Laws may have been the most influential work of the Enlightenment iii. Suggested there were three forms of government: republics, monarchies, and despotisms; soul of republic was virtue, soul of monarch was honor, and soul of despotism was fear f. Diderot and the Encyclopedia i. Most remarkable French publication was the Encyclopedia which claimed to summarize advanced contemporary philosophical, scientific, and technical knowledge, making it available to any reader; guiding spirit behind the venture was Denis Diderot ii. Was banned because thought it was propagate materialism, but didn’t stop purchasing; purchasers were elites iii. Sought political stability and reform C. Internationalization of Enlightenment Themes: Humanitarianism and Toleration a. Enlightenment flourished across central and southern southern Europe; Northern Italy was an important center of Enlightenment thought b. Enlightenment thinkers raised similar themes: humanitarianism (dignity and worth of all individuals), religious toleration, and liberty c. Beccaria Critique of arbitrary power and respect for reason and human dignity, proposed concrete legal reforms and attacked prevalent view that punishments should represent society’s vengeance on the criminal (only legitimate rationale for punishment was to maintain social order and prevent other crimes) d. Beccaria argued for respect for individual dignity dictated that humans should punish other humans no more than is absolutely necessary; opposed torture and death penalty e. Humanitarianism and reason also counseled religious toleration, proved compatible with very different stances on religion, but enlightenment support for toleration was limited f. Economics, Government, and Administration i. Enlightenment ideas had a very real influence over affairs of state; defended reason and knowledge for humanitarian reasons but also promised to make nations stronger, more efficient, and more prosperous ii. Addressed issues of liberty and rights but also took up matters of administration, tax collection, and economic policy iii. Mercantilism term for very wide range of policies based on government regulation of trade iv. Advocated simplifying tax system and following a policy of laissez –faire (letting wealth and goods circulate without government interference) D. Empire and Enlightenment a. Colonial world loomed large in Enlightenment thinking; how colonies could be profitable, saw Americas through highly idealized vision effects of colonialism on Europe were a central Enlightenment theme b. Slavery and the Atlantic World i. Individual moral freedom lay at the heart of what the Enlightenment considered to be a just, stable, and harmonious society; slavery defied natural law and natural freedom ii. Many Enlightenment thinkers condemned slavery in the metaphorical sense; writers dealt more gingerly with the actual enslavement and slave labor of Africans c. Exploration and the Pacific World i. Systematically mapping new sections of the Pacific was among the crucial developments of the age, impact on public imagination; explorations were missions to expand scientific knowledge ii. The Impact of the Scientific Missions 1. Drew freely on reports of scientific missions; stories of new peoples and cultures were immediately fascinating 2. Enlightenment thinkers found it impossible to see other peoples as anything other than primitive versions of Europeans E. The Radical Enlightenment a. Undermined central tenets of eighteenthcentury culture and politics; wide resonance beyond a small group of individuals b. The World of Rousseau i. Rousseau was an outsider who quarreled with other philosophes and contradicted many of their assumptions; shared philosophes’ search for intellectual and political freedom, attacked inherited privilege, and believed in the good of humanity and possibility of creating a just society ii. Introduced other strains including morality and what was called sensibility (cult of feeling) iii. Interest in emotions led him to develop a more complicated portrait of human psychology; considerably more radical iv. Argued that in the state of nature, all men had been equal; social inequality therefore was anchored in private property and it profoundly corrupted “the social contract”, or the formation of government v. Believed legitimate authority arouse from the people alone; argument had three parts: sovereignty belonged to the people alone, exercising sovereignty transformed the nation, the national community would be united by what Rousseau called the “general will” vi. Argued that women should have very different educations, as they were to be useful socially as mothers and wives; drew sharp criticism c. The World of Wollstonecraft i. Shared political views of Rousseau and was a republic, opposed to monarchy, spoke more forcefully against inequality and most radically argued that women had the same innate capacity for reason and self government as men, virtue should mean the same thing for men and women, and relations between the sexes should be based on equality ii. Applied the radical Enlightenment critique of monarchy and inequality for the family; education for women had to promote liberty and selfreliance iii. Believed a natural division of labor existed and that it would ensure social harmony iv. Enlightenment left a mixed legacy on gender, closely parallel to its legacy on slavery F. The Enlightenment and EighteenthCentury Culture a. The Book Trade i. Book publishing and selling flourished; much of the book trade was both international and clandestine changes in printing and distribution have been called a “revolution in communication” and they form a crucial part of the larger picture of the Enlightenment ii. Governments did little to check revolutionary transformation iii. Clandestine booksellers smuggled thousands of books across the border “literary underground” b. High Culture, New Elites, and the Public Sphere i. Enlightenment produced in networks of readers and new forms of sociability and discussion ii. Elite culture very literate and took discussion very seriously; many academics flourished as centers of Enlightenment thinking iii. Salons 1. Operated informally; organized by wellconnected and learned aristocratic women 2. Brought together men and women of letters with members of the aristocracy for conversation, debate, drink, and food 3. Rousseau viewed salons as a sign of superficiality and vacuity in a privileged and over civilized world 4. Coffeehouses multiplied with the colonial trade in sugar, coffee, and tea, and occupied a central spot in the circulation of ideas; many possible links between smaller discussions and news & debates 5. Ability to think critically and speak freely, without deferring to religion or tradition, was a point of pride; gave birth to the very idea of public opinion c. MiddleClass Culture and Reading i. Great deal of literature was aimed at middleclass women; etiquette books and howto manuals for the household sold very well d. Popular Culture: Urban and Rural i. Literacy rates varied dramatically by gender, social class, and region; even illiterate lived in a culture of print and saw visual material ii. Literacy rates higher in cities and towns than rural areas iii. Popular culture rested on networks of sociability; it did not exist in isolation and oral and literate culture overlapped e. EighteenthCentury Music i. Flourishing musical culture was one of the most important features ii. Bach and Handel 1. Bach wrote music of such intensity that the listener feels the salvation of the world hanging on every note 2. Handel was a publicityseeking cosmopolitan who sought out large, secular audiences iii. Haydn and Mozart 1. Haydn and Mozart were the leading representatives of the Classical style which transformed musical culture in Europe in the second half of the eighteenth century 2. Classicism in music sought to organize itself around the principles of order, clarity, and symmetry iv. Opera 1. Opera’s combination of theater and music spread rapidly throughout Europe in the space of a single generation 2. Themes satire, selfcriticism, criticism of hierarchy, optimism, and th social mobility are key to understanding 18 cent. Culture G. Conclusion a. Enlightenment arose from scientific revolution, new sense of power and possibility that rational thinking made possible, and rush of enthusiasm for new forms of inquiry; made many contemporaries uncomfortable
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