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The Age Of Enlightenment: Changes In Science And Philosophy In Europe (Essay Sample)


The paper discusses the enlightenment age.

Student’s Name Professor’s Name Course Date Age of Enlightenment The Age of Enlightenment also commonly known as the Age of Reason refers to the 18th century, during which science, philosophy, communication, and politics in Europe changed significantly. The Age was a movement whose members aimed at enhancing human intellect and culture after what was seen as previous dark eras. The Enlightenment began in Europe and later spread to North America and is regarded as the primary catalyst for the French and American revolutions and was characterized by the rise of reason, liberty, and scientific growth (Szalay). The end of the Age of Enlightenment in the early 1800s paved the way for Romanticism in the 19th century. The Enlightenment and its concepts have been found to play a significant role in the social and economic development as can be seen in modernism in the present society. The Enlightenment movement originated from Western Europe during the first half of the 17th century taking over from the scientific revolution which occurred in the early 1600s. Enlightenment is seen to have begun in England in the 1680s, and during which scholars Isaac Newton and John Locke published books which provided philosophical, scientific, and mathematical components that promoted the Enlightenment ideals. The movement spread throughout the world and had a tremendous effect on human thinking and view of the world, culture, politics, and religion (Strayer & Nelson 45). The peak of the Enlightenment was the French revolution which was violent affecting how people viewed the movement despite the positive transformation it had brought to the society. The Enlightenment movement was enabled by the presence of several elites who formulated the various ideologies that were in line with the aims of the campaign. People who subscribed to the Enlightenment idea devised a different view of the physical world and the society (Strayer & Nelson 45). The drivers of the Enlightenment idea believed the concept of reason would lead to an entirely different world which they anticipated. Some of the most influential individuals in the enlightenment are Isaac Newton and John Locke, scholars who made scholarly developments in philosophy and science. Locke was a senior member of the Enlightenment and had made a series of critical contributions in philosophy, politics, and religion in ensuring that there are changes in the society. In theory, Locke was of the opinion that a person could gain knowledge by reasoning and making judgments based on experience. Locke's contribution to religion states that although biblical miracles exhibit some aspects of divinity, through logic, a person can choose to believe them or not (Age of Enlightenment). In politics, Locke was against the then prevailing notion that rulers get absolute ruling powers from God and not from their subjects. Isaac Newton was the primary driver of science during the Age of Reason through his contribution to mathematics and physical science. Newton is behind the laws of motion and gravitation. According to Strayer and Nelson (51), Joseph Wright; an English artist made a painting of Isaac Newton making a demonstration of the solar system. These two and other brought up some brilliant ideas that gave the movement immense success. The Enlightenment had a massive impact in transforming the society with its ideologies which are still relevant and applicable in today's society. The movement advocated for the use of reason to help us find the truth in everything and has helped change politics, religion, and science in today’s society (Strayer &Newton 49). The movement helped reduce slavery and slave trade owing to their fighting for human liberty to allow people to make decisions from their reasoning. The freedom addressed by the Enlightenment can also be seen in the education and choice making independence. The movement advocated for universal education which ensured that even women were given a chance to get an education which was not possible in the previous age. Education has gone ahead to provide women social and political freedoms. The movement was seen to be against tyranny and authority in both politics and religion (Strayer & Newton 71). The campaign had a significant impact on faith as can be observed in the religious freedoms that are presen...
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