A look at the unparalleled confidence in human reason brought about by enlightenment

Science, Epistemology and Metaphysics in the Enlightenment In this era dedicated to human progress, the advancement of the natural sciences is regarded as the main exemplification of, and fuel for, such progress. It belongs centrally to the agenda of Enlightenment philosophy to contribute to the new knowledge of nature, and to provide a metaphysical framework within which to place and interpret this new knowledge.

A look at the unparalleled confidence in human reason brought about by enlightenment

The quantity and diversity of artistic works during the period do not fit easily into categories for interpretation, but some loose generalizations may be drawn. At the opening of the century, baroque forms were still popular, as they would be at the end.

They were partially supplanted, however, by a general lightening in the rococo motifs of the early s. This was followed, after the middle of the century, by the formalism and balance of neoclassicism, with its resurrection of Greek and Roman models.

In painting, rococo emphasized the airy grace and refined pleasures of the salon and the boudoir, of delicate jewelry and porcelains, of wooded scenes, artful dances, and women, particularly women in the nude. Rococo painters also specialized in portraiture, showing aristocratic subjects in their finery, idealized and beautified on canvas.

The rococo painting of Antoine Watteau blended fantasy with acute observations of nature, conveying the ease and luxury of French court life.

A look at the unparalleled confidence in human reason brought about by enlightenment

Italian painters, such a Giovanni Tiepoloalso displayed rococo influences. English painting lacked the characteristic rococo frivolity, but the style affected works by Sir Joshua Reynolds and Thomas Gainsboroughwhose portraits tended to flatter their aristocratic subjects.

Eighteenth-century neoclassicism in painting is difficult to separate from some works in the era of Louis XIV. Both Charles Le Brun and Nicolas Poussin had earlier projected order and balance, often in grandiose scenes from antiquity or mythology.

Jean Chardin carried some of this over into the s. The neoclassic approach, however, often expressed powerful dissatisfaction and criticism of the existing order, sometimes in stark realism and sometimes in colossal allegory.

The most typical representative of this approach was Jacques Louis Davidwhose most famous work, Death of Socrates illustrates his respect for Greco-Roman tradition. His sketch of Marie Antoinette enroute to the guillotine clearly represents his revolutionary sympathies. The best examples of pure realism and social criticism are the London street scenes by the English painter William Hogarth and the Spanish court portraits of Francisco Goya The number of women painters increased during the eighteenth century, but they were so limited by traditions and so dependent upon public favor that they could hardly maintain consistent styles.

The Enlightenment and Belief in God

Very few were admitted to academies, where their work might be shown; in France, they were not permitted to work with nude models. The result was their practical restriction to still-life and portraiture.

Among rococo painters, the two best-known were Rachel Ruyscha court painter of flowers in Dusseldorf, and Rosalba Carrieraa follower of Watteau, who was admitted to the French Academy in If possible, they were overshadowed by Angelica Kaufmanna Swiss-born artist who painted in England and Italy.

All three were celebrated intheir time. Each produced grand scenes in the neoclassical style, but their market limited them to flattering portraits, at which they excelled. Neoclassicism also found expression in architecture and sculpture. Architecture was marked by a return to the intrinsic dignity of what a contemporary called "the noble simplicity and tranquil loftiness of the ancients.

In England, where the classical style had resisted baroque influences, the great country houses of the nobility now exhibited a purity of design, which often included a portico with Corinthian columns.

Mount Vernon is an outstanding example of neoclassicism in colonial America.

Enlightenment (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

The trend in sculpture often revived classical themes from Greek and Roman mythology; statues of Venus became increasingly popular. Claude Michel and Jean Houdon were two French neoclassical sculptors who also achieved notable success with contemporary portraits. At the opening of the eighteenth century, music demonstrated typical baroque characteristics.

These were evident in instrumental music, especially that of the organ and the strings. The most typical baroque medium was opera, with its opulence and highly emotional content.

The era culminated in the sumptuous religious music of Johann Sebastian Bacha prolific German organ master and choir director. Composers of the late eighteenth century turned from the heavy and complex baroque styles to classical music of greater clarity, simpler structures, and more formal models.

Plain, often folklike melodies also became common. With the appearance of symphonies, sonatas, concertos, and chamber music, less interest was shown in mere accompaniment for religious services or operatic performances. The general emphasis on technical perfection, melody, and orchestration is summed up in the work of the Austrian composers Franz Joseph Haydn and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Haydn wrote over symphonies, along with numerous other works.

Mozart wrote more than works, including 41 symphonies, 22 operas, and 23 string quartets, climaxing his career with his three most famous operas: Musical expression at the turn of the century was touched by the genius of the immortal German composer Ludwig van Beethoven The passion of his sonatas and symphonies expressed a revolutionary romanticism, which challenged the sedate classicism of his time.

Indeed, the verbal media of poetry, drama, prose, and exposition were commonly used to convey the new philosophic principles. In his most famous work, An Essay on ManPope expressed the optimism and respect for reason that marked the era.“It was from the spread of reason and science among individual men”, writes J.H.

Randall, Jr., “that the great apostles of the Enlightenment hoped to bring about the ideal society of mankind. And from there they hoped for a veritable millenium.

Locke, Berkeley & Hume Enlightenment began with an unparalleled confidence in human reason. The new science's success in making clear the natural world through Locke, Berkeley, and Hume affected the efforts of philosophy in two ways. ENLIGHTENMENT. The Enlightenment, also known as the Age of Reason, was the dominant intellectual movement of the eighteenth century.

The achievements of the Scientific Revolution had revealed the ability of the human mind to penetrate the secrets of the physical universe.

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The Age of Enlightenment was preceded by and closely associated with the scientific revolution. Earlier philosophers whose work influenced the Enlightenment included Bacon, Descartes, Locke, and Spinoza.

The major figures of the Enlightenment included Beccaria, Diderot, Hume, Kant, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Adam Smith, and Voltaire. A Look at the Unparalleled Confidence in Human Reason Brought About by Enlightenment PAGES 6.

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Age of Enlightenment - Wikipedia