By Graeme Garrard
The Enlightenment and its legacy are nonetheless actively debated, with the Enlightenment appearing as a key organizing inspiration in philosophy, social conception and the historical past of rules. Counter-Enlightenments is the 1st full-length learn to accommodate the heritage and improvement of counter-enlightenment idea from its inception within the eighteenth century during to the current. carrying out a severe discussion with Isaiah Berlin’s paintings, this booklet analyzes the concept that of counter-enlightenment and a few of an important concerns and difficulties it increases. Graeme Garrard explores the varied varieties of proposal during this box, with a wide-ranging assessment of the main figures of the previous 2 hundred and fifty years, and an incisive overview of the persuasiveness of the most typical and demanding criticisms of the Enlightenment.
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Additional resources for Counter-Enlightenments: From the Eighteenth Century to the Present (Routledge Studies in Social and Political Thought)
93 Yet this outburst is misleading when taken in isolation; he was actually ambivalent about reason in general. 94 He wrote to Jacobi that reason is ‘the source of all truth and of all errors. It is the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Therefore, both parties are right and wrong which deify it and which vilify it. Faith, likewise, is the source of unbelief and of superstition. ” ’95 For Hamann, reason has its place within its proper, limited sphere, but the Aufklärer grossly exaggerated and thereby distorted its power and importance to the exclusion of other sources of insight.
108 Purging it of such allegedly useless ‘irrationalities’ is an assault on the colour, beauty, texture, character, virility, history, and even spirituality of language. ’111 That is why it is mere hubris on the part of humans to tamper with language: God is an author whose ‘writings’ in the form of language and nature should be studied and revered rather than judged, corrected and purified. 113 Because ‘God is a poet, not a geometer’,114 the language of nature is poetical rather than mathematical.
With the assumption of natural human sociability, the philosophes could confidently rely on the self-regulating powers of civil society to maintain social order (more or less). Given his rejection of this crucial Enlightenment assumption, Rousseau was forced to rely on religion and the state to manufacture sociability. The disorder that he identifies with society can only be controlled by means of the artificial promotion of social order through institutions and habits that reshape the identity and beliefs of individuals, causing them to identify with the common interests of all rather than their own narrowly defined, particular interests, thereby transforming the war of all against all in the spirit of community.