Email address: email@example.com
Gerald Celente, a predictor of trends--sits down for an exclusive interview with Russia Today's Anastasia Churkina to talk about what the future holds for America during and after the Great Recession, gives advice to Obama, and forecasts the unexpected. The clip is rather lengthy so I will show only a portion today.
The only email address you should use for me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I moved the "Blog Archive" to the top right on the blog page so it should be easier to find the daily lesson, HW, and other class material.
For example, the only blog page you should have access for this class is: gmicksmithsocialstudies.blogspot.com.
There is no subscription for this blog, thus, if you have a post or a blog page that does not have "g. mick smith, phd" at the top: you are on the incorrect blog. Otherwise, be sure to unsubscribe and delete all posts.
In Chapter 10 Section 2 The Enlightenment we will continue using material to be posted on our Shanawiki page (http://shanawiki.wikispaces.com/).
Students define and post questions for review and clarity:
separation of powers
Pens to Inspire Revolution
Enlightenment thinker Denis Diderot compiled a controversial 28-volume work called the Encyclopedia, which was published between 1751 and 1772. This work was a forum for Enlightenment thinkers such as Montesquieu, Rousseau, and Voltaire. These thinkers believed that with the power of reason, they could fix the problems of society. Although the Encyclopedia was banned in many places and censored in others, it would prove to be a major factor in the years of revolutions to come. It contains the passage below on freedom.
“No man has received from nature the right to give orders to others. Freedom is a gift from heaven, and every individual of the same species has the right to enjoy it as soon as he is in enjoyment of his reason.”
* Explain how science led to the Enlightenment.
* Compare the ideas of Hobbes and Locke.
* Identify the beliefs and contributions of the philosophes.
* Summarize how economic thinking changed during this time.
Terms, People, and Places (some of these may be posted on our Shanawiki page (http://shanawiki.wikispaces.com/) as well.
Rousseau Stirs Things Up
In Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s most important work, The Social Contract, he argued that in order to be free, people should do what is best for their community. Rousseau had many supporters who were inspired by his passionate writings. European monarchs, on the other hand, were angry that Rousseau was questioning authority. As a result, Rousseau worried about persecution for much of his life. The “chains” below represent the social institutions that confined society.
“Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains.”
—Rousseau, The Social Contract
The concept of "general will" is considered Rousseau's most important contribution to political science. It is presented as the answer to the gravest problems of civilization, namely, the problems of inequality, amour-propre, and general discontent. The social contract is the foundation of the general will and the answer to the problem of natural freedom, because nature itself provides no guidelines for determining who should rule. The lecture ends with Rousseau's legacy and the influence he exercised on later nineteenth-century writers and philosophers.
Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses
What effects did Enlightenment philosophers have on government and society?
By the early 1700s, European thinkers felt that nothing was beyond the reach of the human mind. Through the use of reason, insisted these thinkers, people and governments could solve every social, political, and economic problem. In essence, these writers, scholars, and philosophers felt they could change the world.
Scientific Revolution Sparks the Enlightenment
The Scientific Revolution of the 1500s and 1600s had transformed the way people in Europe looked at the world. In the 1700s, other scientists expanded European knowledge. For example, Edward Jenner developed a vaccine against smallpox, a disease whose path of death spanned the centuries.
Scientific successes convinced educated Europeans of the power of human reason. Natural law, or rules discoverable by reason, govern scientific forces such as gravity and magnetism. Why not, then, use natural law to better understand social, economic, and political problems?
Using the methods of the new science, reformers thus set out to study human behavior and solve the problems of society. In this way, the Scientific Revolution led to another revolution in thinking, known as the Enlightenment.
Immanuel Kant, a German philosopher best known for his work The Critique of Pure Reason, was one of the first to describe this era with the word “Enlightenment.” Despite Kant’s skepticism about the power of reason, he was enthusiastic about the Enlightenment and believed, like many European philosophers, that natural law could help explain aspects of humanity.
Hobbes and Locke Have Conflicting Views
Thomas Hobbes and John Locke, two seventeenth-century English thinkers, set forth ideas that were to become key to the Enlightenment. Both men lived through the upheavals of the English Civil War. Yet they came to very different conclusions about human nature and the role of government.
Hobbes Believes in Powerful Government
Thomas Hobbes outlined his ideas in a work titled Leviathan. In it, he argued that people were naturally cruel, greedy, and selfish. If not strictly controlled, they would fight, rob, and oppress one another. Life in the “state of nature”—without laws or other control—would be “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”
To escape that “brutish” life, said Hobbes, people entered into a social contract, an agreement by which they gave up their freedom for an organized society. Hobbes believed that only a powerful government could ensure an orderly society. For him, such a government was an absolute monarchy, which could impose order and compel obedience.
Hobbes Writes the Leviathan
The title page from Leviathan (1651) by Hobbes demonstrates his belief in a powerful ruler. The monarch here represents the Leviathan who rises above all of society.
Locke Advocates Natural Rights
John Locke had a more optimistic view of human nature. He thought people were basically reasonable and moral. Further, they had certain natural rights, or rights that belonged to all humans from birth. These included the right to life, liberty, and property.
In Two Treatises of Government, Locke argued that people formed governments to protect their natural rights. The best kind of government, he said, had limited power and was accepted by all citizens. Thus, unlike Hobbes, Locke rejected absolute monarchy.
England during this time experienced a shift in political power known as the Glorious Revolution. James II, an unpopular absolute monarch, left the throne and fled England in 1688. Locke later wrote that he thought James II deserved to be dethroned for violating the rights of the English.
Locke proposed a radical idea about this time. A government, he said, has an obligation to the people it governs. If a government fails its obligations or violates people’s natural rights, the people have the right to overthrow that government.
Locke’s idea would one day influence leaders of the American Revolution, such as Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison. Locke’s idea of the right of revolution would also echo across Europe and Latin America in the centuries that followed.
In the 1700s, there was a flowering of Enlightenment thought. This was when a group of Enlightenment thinkers in France applied the methods of science to understand and improve society. They believed that the use of reason could lead to reforms of government, law, and society. These thinkers were called philosophes (fee loh zohfs), which means “philosophers.” Their ideas soon spread beyond France and even beyond Europe.
Montesquieu Advances the Idea of Separation of Powers
An early and influential thinker was Baron de Montesquieu (mahn tus kyoo). Montesquieu studied the governments of Europe, from Italy to England. He read about ancient and medieval Europe, and learned about Chinese and Native American cultures. His sharp criticism of absolute monarchy would open doors for later debate.
François-Marie Arouet, most commonly known as Voltaire (1694–1778) was an impassioned poet, historian, essayist, and philosopher who wrote with cutting sarcasm and sharp wit.
Voltaire was sent to the Bastille prison twice due to his criticism of French authorities and was eventually banned from Paris. When he was able to return to France, he wrote about political and religious freedom.
Voltaire spent his life fighting enemies of freedom, such as ignorance, superstition, and intolerance.
Born to wealth, Charles Louis de Secondat (1689–1755) inherited the title Baron de Montesquieu from his uncle. Like many other reformers, he did not let his privileged status keep him from becoming a voice for democracy.
His first book titled Persian Letters ridiculed the French government and social classes. In his work published in 1748, The Spirit of the Laws, he advanced the idea of separation of powers—a foundation of modern democracy.
In 1748, Montesquieu published The Spirit of the Laws, in which he discussed governments throughout history. Montesquieu felt that the best way to protect liberty was to divide the various functions and powers of government among three branches: the legislative, executive, and judicial.
He also felt that each branch of government should be able to serve as a check on the other two, an idea that we call checks and balances. Montesquieu’s beliefs would soon profoundly affect the Framers of the United States Constitution.
Voltaire Defends Freedom of Thought
Probably the most famous of the philosophes was François-Marie Arouet, who took the name Voltaire. “My trade,” said Voltaire, “is to say what I think,” and he did so throughout his long, controversial life.
Voltaire used biting wit as a weapon to expose the abuses of his day. He targeted corrupt officials and idle aristocrats. With his pen, he battled inequality, injustice, and superstition. He detested the slave trade and deplored religious prejudice.
Voltaire’s outspoken attacks offended both the French government and the Catholic Church. He was imprisoned and forced into exile. Even as he saw his books outlawed and even burned, he continued to defend the principle of freedom of speech.
Diderot Edits the Encyclopedia
Denis Diderot (dee duh roh) worked for years to produce a 28-volume set of books called the Encyclopedia. As the editor, Diderot did more than just compile articles.
His purpose was “to change the general way of thinking” by explaining ideas on topics such as government, philosophy, and religion. Diderot’s Encyclopedia included articles by leading thinkers of the day, including Montesquieu and Voltaire.
In these articles, the philosophes denounced slavery, praised freedom of expression, and urged education for all. They attacked divine-right theory and traditional religions. Critics raised an outcry.
The French government argued that the Encyclopedia was an attack on public morals, and the pope threatened to excommunicate Roman Catholics who bought or read the volumes.
Despite these and other efforts to ban the Encyclopedia, more than 4,000 copies were printed between 1751 and 1789. When translated into other languages, the Encyclopedia helped spread Enlightenment ideas throughout Europe and across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas.
Rousseau Promotes The Social Contract
Jean-Jacques Rousseau (roo soh), believed that people in their natural state were basically good. This natural innocence, he felt, was corrupted by the evils of society, especially the unequal distribution of property.
Many reformers and revolutionaries later adopted this view. Among them were Thomas Paine and Marquis de Lafayette, who were leading figures of the American and French Revolutions.
In 1762, Rousseau set forth his ideas about government and society in The Social Contract. Rousseau felt that society placed too many limitations on people’s behavior.
He believed that some controls were necessary, but that they should be minimal. Additionally, only governments that had been freely elected should impose these controls.
Rousseau put his faith in the “general will,” or the best conscience of the people. The good of the community as a whole, he said, should be placed above individual interests.
Rousseau has influenced political and social thinkers for more than 200 years. Woven through his work is a hatred of all forms of political and economic oppression. His bold ideas would help fan the flames of revolt in years to come.
Women Challenge the Philosophes
The Enlightenment slogan “free and equal” did not apply to women. Though the philosophes said women had natural rights, their rights were limited to the areas of home and family.
By the mid- to late-1700s, a small but growing number of women protested this view. Germaine de Staël in France and Catharine Macaulay and Mary Wollstonecraft in Britain argued that women were being excluded from the social contract itself. Their arguments, however, were ridiculed and often sharply condemned.
Wollstonecraft was a well-known British social critic. She accepted that a woman’s first duty was to be a good mother but felt that a woman should be able to decide what was in her own interest without depending on her husband.
In 1792, Wollstonecraft published A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. In it, she called for equal education for girls and boys. Only education, she argued, could give women the tools they needed to participate equally with men in public life.
HW, if and when you have written work, you can email the answers to me email@example.com.
Friday: no written HW.
After Mass today, Sr. asked us today to reflect on our individual place in the world. A reflection on the experience of others might help us think about the place of our country in the world as well.