In the 17th and 18th centuries, the goal of many Western philosophers, writers, political scholars and scientists was to establish ‘reason’ as man’s defining feature. Following Ancient Greece, Enlightenment thinkers believed that only ‘rational’ investigation could reveal the truths about man, nature and the cosmos. The current global environment is the direct beneficiary of the worldview imagined and made real by the Enlightenment. This course will explore the legacy of Enlightenment ideas; the rising authority of science, moral relativism and the rise of authoritarianism.
This course is offered with the generous support of the Association for Continuing Education.