Age of Enlightenment


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Related to Age of Enlightenment: Age of Reason, industrial revolution

Age of Enlightenment

the period of intellectual ferment leading up to the French Revolution, which was distinguished by a fundamental questioning of traditional modes of thought and social organization, and sought to replace these with an exclusive reliance on human reason in determining social practices. Many thinkers and philosophers were associated with these developments, amongst them Voltaire (1694-1778), MONTESQUIEU, Holbach (1723-89), Helvétius (1715-71), Diderot (1713-84) and ROUSSEAU. Nor was the movement merely confined to France; it also embraced numerous other thinkers elsewhere, including members of the so-called SCOTTISH ENLIGHTENMENT, such as Adam FERGUSON and John MILLAR, whose work was especially sociological. Despite a common accord on the importance of reason in human affairs, major differences of view existed between thinkers: Voltaire popularized English liberal doctrines of NATURAL RIGHTS; Holbach and Helvétius took these doctrines further and argued for UTILITARIANISM and representative government; while Rousseau's concept of the SOCIAL CONTRACT led to holistic conceptions of state and society realized in the French Revolution. In retrospect, much Enlightenment thought is seen as superficial, lacking an adequate empirical research base, and above all overconfident about human PROGRESS and the ultimate triumph of Reason. However, the Enlightenment era signalled a final decisive break between traditional and modern thought, and between traditional and modern forms of social organization. See also COMTE, RATIONALISM, GRAND NARRATIVES.
References in periodicals archive ?
This is a bright new Age, the Age of Enlightenment. We don't lose anymore!"
With the age of enlightenment, experimental work was gradually taking ground and led finally to most important insights into mechanisms of cellular functions, up to the molecular and even quantum level.
Herzig Professor of Pathophysiology faculty of Medicine Johannes Gutenberg University Germany, said with the age of enlightenment, experimental work was gradually taking ground and led finally to most important insights into mechanisms of cellular functions, up to the molecular and even quantum level.
"Sebastian would love to sing with an orchestra such as the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment or London Symphony Orchestra but they could cost around [pounds sterling]15,000 per day on top of venue hire and production costs."
Has the glow from age of enlightenment Been blown By a modern day fuse?
The essays that follow were the product of a Royal Society of Edinburgh network award on 'Allan Ramsay and Edinburgh in the First Age of Enlightenment' (bit.ly/edinburgh-enlightenment) awarded from 2015 to 2017 to myself as Principal Investigator with an international and interdisciplinary team.
Recent engagements include Faure's Requiem with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Handel's Messiah with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, and the world premiere of Alexander Raskatov's Green Mass with the London Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO), and concerts in Notre Dame Cathedral, the Netherlands, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Nicola Benedetti Nicola, "the nation's favourite violinist", stars with The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in a concert that shows two different faces of Beethoven.
IF our current times are days of austerity, then Victorian Britain must have seemed like an age of enlightenment.
But I knew where Anne Boleyn was beheaded and that the Age of Enlightenment was not called Hogmanay, unless you're a Scotsman, that is.
Written in the Age of Enlightenment, Goethe's epic poem has Faust saved from damnation by angels for his unending quest for truth.