Essays on the enlightenment era

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The Enlightenment took place during the 18th century and was initiated by the renaissance. It was called the enlightenment because it was a period of new beginnings, in which new thoughts prevailed over old traditions. The Enlightenment was strongly influenced by the rise of modern science and the by the aftermath of the long religious conflict that followed the Reformation. The thinkers of the Enlightenment were committed to secular views based on reason or human understanding only which they hoped would provide a basis for change affecting all aspects of life and thought.

It was an intellectual movement brought about by philosophers. The Enlightenment occupies a central role in the justification for the movement known as modernism.

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Modernism describes a series of reforming cultural movements in art and architecture, music, literature and the applied arts. The Enlightenment is held to be the source of critical ideas, such as freedom, democracy and reason as primary values of society.

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Joel Mokyr is the Robert H. In France, a new generation of philosophers including Marcel Gauchet, Pierre Manent, Luc Ferry, and Alain Renaut have embraced the main articles of faith of liberal democracy against the critics of liberal society. Submit payment details. Confessions - This immaturity is self-imposed when its cause lies not in lack of understanding, but in lack of resolve and courage to use it without guidance from another.

This view argues that the establishment of a contractual basis of rights would lead to the market mechanism and capitalism, the scientific method, religious tolerance, and the organization of states into self-governing republics through democratic means. In this view, the tendency of the philosophes in particular to apply rationality to every problem is considered the essential change. From this point on, thinkers and writers were held to be free to pursue the truth in whatever form, without the threat of retribution for violating established ideas.

During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the literary world witnessed the birth of the Enlightenment and Romantic Periods. There were similarities as well as very notable differences between the two. There were also two prominent voices that gained notoriety during each of these two periods. Voltaire is considered to be the pioneer of the power of reason and Rousseau is looked upon as a legendary figure of nineteenth-century Romanticism.

This analysis will evaluate the two eras, both writers and a literary piece. The Enlightenment Era gave way to an age of reasoning. During this time, the writers were regarded as philosophers. They came up with diverse theories and possessed different points of view. Never the less, the philosophers were amalgamated on the basis of worldly, civilisation, broad-based, and self-determination.

Gay, 3. Another recurring theme of The Enlightenment was happiness.

Happiness was considered the most important factor of The Enlightenment deliberations. It was happiness in the present and nothing outside of that moment. Happiness was viewed as an entitlement that all men were privileged to have and only ignorance along with peripheral barriers could refute them. Anderson, Lastly, church and government were also two foundations that served as ethical conductors for human manners during the Enlightenment Era. In other words, rules and guidance were needed to keep people on the right path, otherwise, they were bound to behave immorally. Romanticism was an era when writers and poets strayed away from reasoning or rational thinking.

The focus is now shifted to individualism, emotions, and nature. James These themes provided new ideas and different means to interpret and understand the world in a whole new light. During the Romantic Era, the individual became more important than in the past. According to J. Cohen, this era encouraged people to look at themselves not as fragments extending from heaven to the natural world but as inimitable entities eminent in their own authenticity.

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Cohen, 7 This idea indicates that man is a distinct being entitled to explore and express his own feelings and thoughts. Simply put, examine the man as an individual and not as a unit. The Romantic Era was a period of that examined emotions and put them into words.

Romantics abandoned the logical traditional Western World thought which believed that intelligence was the method used to understand the world. However, the Romantics opted to espouse imagination and feelings as a veritable approach to empathise the world. James , Lastly, the Romantic Era blended human emotions with nature. The interfacing of emotion and nature was emblematic of Romantic poetry, whether it engrossed the idea of bequeathing human emotions to an innate article like a river or connecting the scenery to the temperament of the writer. James, This kind of beauty that is portrayed in the world may not actually exist; however, it is evoked from personal acuity and passion as seen through the eyes of the poet.

When comparing The Enlightenment to Romanticism, there were two similar characteristics. First, they were both rebellions. The Enlightenment was a revolution against religion. The previous period placed more emphasis on God and the natural order of the universe as opposed to rationalism. James, 1 On the other hand, Romanticism was a revolution against The Enlightenment. Romantics felt that every occurrence in the world could not be determined by logic and that beauty as well as imagination was an important aspect of life. The two periods also presented thoughts on individualism.

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The Enlightenment looked at the individual based on their personal reasoning while Romantics focused on individual feelings. Although their basic idea on the individual was different, both periods emphasised the personal right to power of their own person. The Enlightenment differed from Romanticism in many ways. First, The Enlightenment placed immense importance on thoughts and reasoning while Romantics focused on emotions and self- experience.

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The Enlightenment poets were dexterous in using true-life events to create realistic works depicting an illusory individual. Unlike The Enlightenment, Romantic poetics constructed elegiac pieces that exhibited personal feelings. One last difference is that The Enlightenment writers used human beings as their principal focus in poetry while Romantics used nature. Voltaire was a writer during The Enlightenment period and was known as one of the dominant philosophers in his era. His literary form was displayed by characteristics of tradition and heroism. The literary mode he presented was satiric and filled with reasoning.

His reality was based on principles of experience and observation. The plot in his compositions was motivated by consequence, knowledge, and logic.

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The characters were fictional common individuals. He also felt that man should be happy regardless of his confinements. Rousseau composed literary compositions during the Romantic Period and unlike Voltaire, he wrote from a very different perspective. Rousseau was considered to be an iconic figure for the Romantic Era. The literary forms that his stories took on were novel and unique. The literary modes displayed in his compositions were full of personal accounts and emotions.

His reality was internal because the focus took an account of his personal feelings. The plots assigned to his compositions were inspired by the character, feelings, passion, and poignant conclusions.