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THE AGE OF REASON Liberty in England sprang from the quarrels of tyrants. - Voltaire Philosophical Letters on the English 1778.

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Presentation on theme: "THE AGE OF REASON Liberty in England sprang from the quarrels of tyrants. - Voltaire Philosophical Letters on the English 1778."— Presentation transcript:

1 THE AGE OF REASON Liberty in England sprang from the quarrels of tyrants. - Voltaire Philosophical Letters on the English 1778

2 The Man Who Would Be King… …except that no one really wanted him James II r Limits of Absolutism… origins of Liberalism & the Enlightenment Why did the Stuarts become so unpopular?

3 We Are Family Henry VIII “ Bloody Mary” Elizabeth I r r Catholic v. Protestant Protestant v. Protestant Anglicans v. Puritans

4 Roundheads in a Square World 1. Calvinists - anti-hierarchical - “middle” class

5 Stuart Kings 1. James I (& VI) “Divine Right” / Absolutism King James Bible (1611) 2. Charles I Short Parliament 1640

6 English Civil War Culture Wars King v. Parliament Absolutism v. Magna Carta Nobility v. bourgeoisie Oliver Cromwell Anglican (Catholic) v. Puritan 2. Commonwealth ( ) Burgermeister Meisterburger

7 Which brings us back to James 1. The Restoration Charles II James II Glorious Revolution Dual Monarchy William & Mary

8 4. Checks & Balances Rise of Parliament Toleration Act 1688 Declaration of Rights 1689

9 Mad dogs and Englishmen Any single man must judge for himself whether circumstances warrant obedience or resistance to the commands of the civil magistrate; we are all qualified, entitled, and morally obliged to evaluate the conduct of our rulers. - John Locke, Second Treatise of Government, 1689

10 Remembering Hobbes In the wake of the English Revolution How do we justify revolution... without risking anarchy? John Locke

11 Natural Law = Natural “Rights” Two Treatises of Government natural rights An Essay Concerning Human Understanding tabula rasa

12 Liberalism Limited Government Personal Liberty Positive Humanism The Magna Carta 1215

13 * Sapere aude! Natural Rights Legitimacy non-inherent Society of secular/rational values *Dare to know!

14 II. THE ENLIGHTENMENT My mind is my own church. - Thomas Paine

15 A. What Is Enlightenment? 1. Freedom from the past… look forward, not back Reform of: political institutions prisons / criminal codes education economic development religious toleration

16 2. The Philosophes 1700s progress: - understanding “natural laws” - overcoming religious “ignorance” - social / political reform RATIONALISM, CRITICISM, ACTIVISM

17 3. Reason and Order Denis Diderot - Encyclopédie 1766 “All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone’s feelings…” - Summarize & promote knowledge - “Natural Science”

18 B. The German view 1. Immanuel Kant ( ) Critique of Pure Reason 1781 Sapere aude the “subjective”

19 C. Anti-authoritarian Voltaire - Philosophical Letters Concerning the English Nation Talent vs. tradition Candide 1759 cynicism

20 2. David Hume An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding 1748 extreme skepticism “religion grows out of hope or fear” Voltaire, Candide

21 D. Rational Government 1. Locke - Two Treatises… 2. Montesquieu - The Spirit of the Laws govt. & civic virtue - checks / balances - enlightened despots

22 E. Democratic rationalism 1. Jean-Jacques Rousseau The Social Contract justice and order Sovereignty rests with the people “general will”

23 2. Thomas Jefferson Declaration of Independence 1776 Contract nationalism Right to Revolution

24 F. Critique of Religion 1. Thomas Paine - religion as social control - radical politics Age of Reason 1794 “My own mind is my own church” Baron D’Holbach - “castles in the air”

25 III. Empire of Reason The Spirit of ’76

26 The Great Paradox of American Slavery “How is it that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty from the drivers of Negroes?” - Dr. Samuel Johnson

27 A. Extensive Revolution 1. Benign neglect

28 B. Intensive Revolution 1. Rights of Englishmen - political / economic stress 2. Liberty or Equality? “The spirit of Liberty has spread where it was not intended to go…”

29 C. The Counter-revolution 1. Constitutional Convention 1787

30 2. Compromise - slavery approved - the Bill of Rights James Madison

31 The New Republic Experiment liberty = right of free, (white) men to control their economic, political destiny in lieu of social equality "How is it that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty from the drivers of Negroes?" - Samuel Johnson Paradox Liberty for some by denying it to others - radicalism contained

32 Paradox… Absolute rulers promoted rationalism (science)… …but that same rationalism would be a source of anti- Absolutism.


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