Essay about Humanism

Essay about Humanism

Length: 1235 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Humanism


Humanism was a new way of thinking that came about in fourteenth century, the time of the Renaissance.  Many scholars refer to it as the "Spirit of the Renaissance."  Humanism was a lay phenomenon that emphasized human beings - as opposed to deities - as well as their interests, achievements and capabilities.  Humanism is derived from the Latin word humanitas, which Cicero, the noted orator of the Roman Empire, referred to as the "literary culture needed by anyone who would be considered educated and civilized." 

Humanism and Literature

Humanists searched for wisdom from the past.  They copied the lifestyles of the ancient Greeks and Romans.  They also traced their families back to the days of the ancient Romans. They endeavored on archaeological expeditions to recover ancient manuscripts, statues and monuments so that they may better understand human nature.  The Christian humanists, however, were sometimes skeptical as to the authority of the ancient writers.  Medieval humanists accepted pagan and classical authors uncritically.  The humanists of the Renaissance, however, viewed the classics from a Christian perspective, "Man is created in God's image."  They rejected any classical ideas that opposed Christianity but sometimes found an underlying harmony between secular and pagan ideas and the Christian faith. 

The humanists of the Renaissance loved the language of the classics and thought it was finer and more pure than the corrupt Latin taught in medieval schools.  They became more concerned with form rather than content.  Literary humanists wrote in the style of the ancient writers.  The leading humanists of the time were rhetoricians.  They held discussions in the same style used in the ancient P...


... middle of paper ...


... the same dilemma.  They read mostly Greek and Roman texts because they believed them to be the greatest. 

Humanism and Political Theory

The political theories that emerged because of humanism can best be illustrated with Niccolò Machiavelli's The Prince.  The Prince described the actual competitive framework of the Italian states.  It deals with problems of society and government that have always existed.  Machiavelli said that the test of a capable government was whether or not it could provide justice, law, order among its citizens and whether or not the ruler increases his power.  He also said that a ruler should only be concerned with the way things are, not the way things should be.  He believed that political actions cannot be restricted by moral considerations, and that if the outcome of a decision is favorable, then the ends will justify the means.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Origins Of Renaissance Humanism Essay

- Renaissance Humanism is getting back to ancient sources of antiquity. Just as the Renaissance reshaped the face of Europe, which began in the 1300s and thrived after the 1500s. The main tenant of this movement is Ad Fontes, which means “back to the sources.” This mantra allowed people to reexamine classic literature and rediscover the true meaning of the ancient texts. This is different from modern day humanism, as it is not based on ideology. Instead, this is based on the study of classical texts in a new age manner, which allows them to break through the medieval mindset and create something entirely new....   [tags: Renaissance, Humanism, Catholic Church]

Strong Essays
716 words (2 pages)

Description of Humanism Greek Culture Essays

- During the Hellenic Age which is sometimes known as the classical period for the Greeks and is dated c.500-300 B.C. In this time period the Greek culture flourish philosophy developed, sculpturing became more sophisticated, and the greatest of them all was the birth of humanism. Humanism is described as being “any system or mode of thought or action in which human interests, values, and dignity predominate” (“Humanism n.pag.). Humanism meant making men superior over all things and that men were supreme even over the Gods....   [tags: greek culture, hellenic age, humanism]

Strong Essays
671 words (1.9 pages)

Essay on Humanism in the Battle for the Mind by Tim LaHaye

- Tim LaHaye is one of the most influential religious leaders in the United States today. In 2001, Evangelical Studies Bulletin named him as the most influential Christian leader for the past quarter century. He is mostly known for the Left Behind series of apocalyptic fiction, which he co-wrote with Jerry B. Jenkins. However, this paper will talk about LaHaye’s book, The Battle for the Mind, which is one of his most important works but was not included in the Left Behind series. In The Battle for the Mind, which was published in 1980, LaHaye discusses how conservative Christians could “take back America” around a conservative political agenda, and from the standpoint of the field of anthropol...   [tags: christian, humanism, pray]

Strong Essays
658 words (1.9 pages)

Your Humanism verses My Creationism Essay

- There are several philosophies which have recently surfaced which most likely intend to debunk the certainty we are undeniably a creation. Since my adolescence I have witnessed and observed that most individuals in general, have converted to the “humanism proposition,” (HP) and become less attracted to the “creationist hypothesis” (CH). I have formed my attitude and/or outlook based on observation and collective research into what I refer to as the “Eventual collapse of the creationist perspective.” Hollywood, coupled with the upsurge of non-believers in our society-(America), is warring against the actual notion that we to some degree, shape, or form are created....   [tags: Humanism Proposition, Creation, Philosophy]

Strong Essays
1285 words (3.7 pages)

Humanism Essay

- Humanism The word “humanism” has a number of meanings, and because there are so many different meanings it can be quite confusing if you don't know what kind of humanism someone is talking about. Literary Humanism is a devotion to the humanities or literary culture. Renaissance Humanism is the spirit of learning that developed at the end of the middle ages with the revival of classical letters and a renewed confidence in the ability of human beings to determine for themselves truth and falsehood....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
1658 words (4.7 pages)

Humanism Essay

- Humanism Encarta Dictionary says that Humanism is a system of thought that centers on human beings and their values, capacities and worth. Encarta also goes on the say that, in philosophy, humanism is an attitude that emphasizes the dignity and worth of an individual. A basic premise of humanism is that people are rational beings who possess within themselves the capacity for truth and goodness. I see myself as a being a humanist through everyday life. I always try to see the good in a person when he/she makes me angry or sad, and say I to myself that maybe that person has had a bad day and living life is difficult at the moment....   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
455 words (1.3 pages)

Humanism Essay

- 1 Humanism The Renaissance, which began in Italy in 1300s, was one of the largest periods of growth and development in Western Europe. The increase in trade caused an abundance in wealth that resulted in the focusing of the arts. Such things as literature, paintings, sculptures and many more works are known to have blossomed from the period known as the Renaissance. The Renaissance was started by many rich Italian cities, such as Florence, Ferrara, Milan, and Venice (Bram 274). Because these cities were very wealthy, many merchants started to spend money on different things, such as painting, learning, new banking techniques, and new systems of government....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Free Essays
1475 words (4.2 pages)

Essay about Humanism

- Humanism Humanism was a new way of thinking that came about in fourteenth century, the time of the Renaissance.  Many scholars refer to it as the "Spirit of the Renaissance."  Humanism was a lay phenomenon that emphasized human beings - as opposed to deities - as well as their interests, achievements and capabilities.  Humanism is derived from the Latin word humanitas, which Cicero, the noted orator of the Roman Empire, referred to as the "literary culture needed by anyone who would be considered educated and civilized."  Humanism and Literature Humanists searched for wisdom from the past.  They copied the lifestyles of the ancient Greeks and Romans.  They also traced their families...   [tags: Philosophy essays]

Strong Essays
1235 words (3.5 pages)

Humanism Essay

- Humanism Before the Italian Renaissance, the education system in Europe was controlled by the Latin Church, which basically taught mostly religious doctrine. Then, beginning in the 1300's, many scholars began to discover classic works by the likes of Plato and especially Cicero. Cicero, who was a Roman philosopher and statesman, studied something he called "humane studies." Cicero influenced Francesco Petrarch, who started the renaissance revival of antiquity, when he discovered his lost letters....   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
1759 words (5 pages)

Humanism Essay

- According to Encyclopedia.com humanism is, “ a philosophical and literary movement in which man and his capabilities are the central concern.” While this simple definition certainly does convey the essence of the movement, it does no justice to the whirlwind of artistic and intellectual inspiration stirred up by it. There are many forms of humanistic philosophy in today’s society, but the origin of this school of thought traces its roots back to the days of the scholars of ancient Greece and Rome....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
559 words (1.6 pages)