What was the Enlightenment and Why is it important for modern unversities - Essay Example

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What was the Enlightenment and Why is it important for modern unversities

The rest of the essay will foray into the wider implications of the Enlightenment and try to capture its significance to the academia of today.
The Enlightenment has had a profound impact on the cultural evolution of Western Europe in particular and the whole of the continent in general. A landmark piece of scholarship that turned the tables in favor of scientific reasoning is Newton’s analysis and description of natural physical phenomena. The immediate impact was discernible in written literature of the day, due to the scope of this medium of art (Brians, Paul, 1998). On the other hand, it took longer for ideas of the Enlightenment to penetrate into art forms such as music and painting due to the emphasis on traditionally acquired technique in these art forms. While it is difficult to categorize the newly evolving artistic manifestations of the time, a few broad trends could be noted. For example,
“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 1700s. This was followed, after the middle of the century, by the formalism and balance of neoclassicism, with its resurrection of Greek and Roman models. Although the end of the century saw a slight romantic turn, the eras characteristic accent on reason found its best expression in neoclassicism.” (Hackett, 1992)
As mentioned before, this rise of neoclassical artistic expression found its highest glory in the Literature of the day. All forms of literature, ranging from prose, narrative verse, poetry, plays, etc were infused with newly discovered scientific truths and newly evolving systems of natural philosophy. Such luminaries as Alexander Pope, Phyllis Wheatley, Voltaire and Jonathan Swift among others were at the ...Show more

Summary

The Age of Enlightenment was a period in early modern history when western societies, led by its intellectuals, made a marked shift from religion based authority to one of scientific reason. Prior to this period, the Church and the State were intricately interlinked; and the…
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