The Monty Python Grail Government video casts an interesting light on several of the topics we have discussed in this class. Two of the most prominent is relativism and the role of religion in government.
Relativism, in general, is the idea that there is no one objective truth, but that everything is relative to the speaker’s viewpoint. In other words, our perceptions of what goes on around us make us see things differently to how others perceive them. This is seen in the video through the way King Arthur and the peasant interpret things so differently, from his right to rule down to how people should be treated. They also clearly have different ideas about what Arthur is doing on his quest.
The role of religion in government has a lot to do with relativism. Although some would consider this role to be vital, and the only way for a government to be legitimate, others would not. In the video, for example, King Arthur explains how he became king by getting Excalibur from the lady of the lake, and how this makes him the true king of the country. The peasants, on the other hand, think this is ridiculous. Although the lady of the lake is not religious as such, she makes a good example of the arguments against religious rule. For instance, the male peasant talks about how, instead of “farcical aquatic ceremonies,” the real right to power should come from the people of a country. This would suggest that the only way to be really a legitimate ruler or government would not be religious, but popular support. ...Show more