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Hobbes, Marx, and Shah

Powerful Essays
The cold, calculating, and logical brains of Enlightenment thinkers are much different from the emotional, fantasy-loving mind of Romantics. The Enlightenment was an 18th century movement in which rationality and science were placed as the number one things a human could have (Brians). The Enlightenment also propagated the idea equality and liberalism (Brians). Romanticism was an international movement which occurred after the Enlightenment during the late 1700s to the mid-1800s (Melani). It placed emotions at the forefront of human thought (Melani). Thomas Hobbes, a very early Enlightenment thinker, has a variety of ideas which do not coincide with those of Karl Marx, an early Romantic.

The thinkers of the Enlightenment era, which was the 1700s, were philosophes, and “they believed that human reason could be used to combat ignorance, superstition, and tyranny,” (Brians). Throughout all of the causes and movements they supported, the philosphes placed logic and reason on a pedestal. In truth, “Enlightenment thinkers insisted on combining [logic] with something they called “reason” which consisted of common sense, observation, and their own unacknowledged prejudices in favor of skepticism and freedom,” (Brians). This idea of logic led to a questioning of the societal structure, and soon wealthy merchants were questioning why they had to pay large taxes to aristocrats (Brians). These merchants “were naturally convinced that their earnings were the result of individual merit and hard work,” (Brians), and they did not believe they should lose them to taxes. It is from this situation that the philosophe’s belief in equality comes from, and because tolerance is just social equality, the philosophe’s also believed in tolerance...

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