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Level 60

Enlightenment Ideas & Philosophers


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The Enlightenment
educated Americans were attracted to this European movement in literature and philosophy, believed the "darkness" of past ages could be corrected by the use of human reasoning
Social Contract
An implicit agreement among the members of a society to cooperate for social benefits, for example by sacrificing some individual freedom for state protection. Theories of a social contract became popular in the 16th, 1…
natural rights
life, liberty, and right to own property
John Locke
Wrote Two Treatises on Government as justification of Glorious Revolution and end of absolutism in England. He argued that man is born good and has rights to life, liberty, and property. To protect these rig…
Montesquieu
French political philosopher who advocated the separation of executive and legislative and judicial powers (1689-1755), wrote spirit of laws
voltaire
used satire against opponents, (1694-1778) French philosopher. He believed that freedom of speech was the best weapon against bad government. He also spoke out against the corruption of the French government, and the intolerance of the Catholic Church.
Beccaria
(1738-1794) wrote 'On Crimes and Punishments', wanted laws to conform to rational laws of nature
Wollstonecraft
English writer and early feminist who denied male supremacy and advocated equal education for women, wrote "Vindication of the Rights of Women"
Rousseau
(1712-1778) process of civilization and enlightenment had corrupted human nature, evil of the world founded upon uneven distribution of property, real purpose of society was to nurture better people, wrote the Social Contract
diderot
created the encyclopedia
Thomas Hobbes
Hobbes wrote that without government, life would be poor, nasty, brutish, and short. Presented the idea of the social contract. Leviathan
Level 61