Presentation on theme: "The Enlightenment Thinkers. What would society be like without laws? Should the government protect us or should we protect ourselves against the government?"— Presentation transcript:
What would society be like without laws? Should the government protect us or should we protect ourselves against the government? Are there certain rights that all humans deserve? Should citizens put the good of society above themselves? Or themselves above the community?
Thomas Hobbes (English) People are naturally cruel and greedy. If not controlled, people would oppress (put down) one another. SOCIAL CONTRACT give up your rights of nature to the ruler and in return the ruler would take care of you (creates organization). Felt only powerful rulers could keep order; he supported the idea of an Absolute Monarch.
John Locke (English) Believed people were reasonable and good. All people are born with NATURAL RIGHTS. Ex: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness People formed governments to protect their natural rights. Best kind of government was a limited government, NOT an absolute monarchy. (Thomas Jefferson used a lot of Locke’s ideas in the U.S. Constitution) If the government failed to provide for the people, the citizens have a right to overthrow the government (authorizes the right to revolt).
Baron de Montesquieu (French) Rejected the idea of an absolute monarch. Favored a limited government. Believed in SEPARATION OF POWERS so that one branch of the government does not get too powerful. Each branch should be able to check on the other branch CHECKS AND BALANCES.
Voltaire (Francois-Marie Arouet): French Defended FREEDOM OF SPEECH the people have the right to openly criticize the ruler and protest. “I do not agree with a word you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Criticized government officials a lot; imprisoned twice. Exiled to England for 2 years. Exposed government abuses, inequality, injustice, and superstition.
Denis Diderot (French) Worked for 25 years to produce a 28 volume Encyclopedia in order to gather human knowledge. The book changed the way people thought about government, philosophy, and religion. He helped spread Enlightenment ideas because they could be found in one big book! (Remember, there weren’t e- mails/texts to spread the word!) The Catholic Church and the French monarchy didn’t like this book at all!
Jean-Jacques Rousseau (Genevan but lived in France) People were good, but became corrupted by their environment especially because of the unequal distribution of land (land = power). Government can only control you if it has been FREELY ELECTED you voted for it! He put his faith in the ‘general will’ of the people; he believed that people would and should make choices that would benefit the community as a whole instead of one person. Hated political and economic oppression.
Mary Wollstonecraft (British) Argued that women were being excluded from the SOCIAL CONTRACT. A woman should decide what was in her own best interest and NOT be dependent on a man/husband/father/brother. EQUAL EDUCATION for boys and girls so that they could participate equally in government.
Adam Smith (British) LAISSEZ-FAIRE allow businesses to operate freely, not controlled by the government. Supported a free market and believed that supply and demand would keep prices fair for everyone.
Which Enlightenment thinker do you agree with most? EXPLAIN which of their ideas makes the most sense to you?