Nov. 20, 2013
“What is enlightenment?” (Kant)
Rationalism – the age of reason
Rejection of traditional forms of authority – religion
Shed authority for reason
Every person should think for themselves rather than relying on the authority of others or blind
Freedom – from religious and political authority; tradition; to think/self-determination
Science as a source of knowledge against revelation, superstition, etc.
Reason and scientific inquiry
Science and the maturity of self-interpretation (progress) give the Enlightenment a place in
Problems: Eurocentrism, Whig history (belief that things are always getting better)
Previous generations – their own sense of happiness and virtue
Foucault – critic of the enlightenment/modern reason
Who gets to speak the truth about madness/insanity? Who is excluded and why?