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The Enlightenment: An Incredible Change

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The Enlightenment is known as the age of reasons because of its gradual changes or transitions from traditional to modern societies. It was a big change from faith or religion towards science and the intellectual reasoning. Also, many societies or people changed their styles of living and beliefs such as they went from rural to urban, agriculture to commerce, believe to reason, religion to science, and so on. During the Neo-Classical era, many world famous writers such as Jean-Baptiste Poquelin known by Moliere, Jonathan Swift, and Francois-Marie Arouet know by Voltaire wrote some incredible stories, poems, plays and articles about the age of reason. In literature, all of them are well known by the tactics and methods they used in their styles of writing in order to persuade or inform the readers. In the Age of Enlightenment, Moliere, Swift, and Voltaire used the concept of “Satire”, such as verbal, situational, and dramatic irony to depict their message across.

In literature, one of the components of satire is verbal irony which occurs when the author depicts his message to the readers indirectly and uses sarcasm to prove his argument. For instance, “Tartuffe” a famous play written by Moliere depicts the life of a religious hypocrite who scams people while using religion as a cover. In the play, many family members recognized Tartuffe as a religious hypocrite except Madam Pernelle who is Orgon’s mother, and Orgon who is the head of the family and married to his wife, Elmire. The play contains many verbal ironies such as when Dorine, Orgon’s maid, states that: “They make a lovely pair” which sarcastically depicts that Orgon’s daughter; Mariane and Tartuffe are not a reasonable couple (33). In an article, “a modest proposal” ...

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...Candide, he argues against ongoing problems such as corruption within churches, states, diseases, and war while using satire to depict them all. The concept of satire not just have been used in the age of enlightenment, but we still use it today.

Works Cited

Moliere, Jean-Baptiste Poquelin. “Tartuffe” The Norton Anthology of Western Literature. Ed. Sarah Lawal. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W. Northon & Company, 2006. 10-67. Print. 2 vols.

Swift, Jonathan. “Gulliver’s Travels” and “A Modest Proposal” The Norton Anthology of Western Literature. Ed. Sarah Lawal. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W. Northon & Company, 2006. 289-347. Print. 2 vols.

Voltaire, Francois-Marie Arouet. “Candide” The Norton Anthology of Western Literature. Ed. Sarah Lawal. 8th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W.W. Northon & Company, 2006. 375-438. Print. 2 vols.
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