The Influence of Enlightenment on the French Revolution

What is enlightenment? The 18th century Enlightenment was a movement of the intellectuals who dared to prove all the aspects in life scientifically. German philosopher Immauel Kant proclaimed the motto of the enlightenment : Dare to know!: Have the courage to use your own intelligence! People were greatly impressed by the scientific revolution. They were also advocating the application of the scientific method to the understanding of all life. During the age of enlightenment, science became popular and there were a lot of philosophers who applied the natural law to the social life. For example: John Locke, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Adam Smith, Montesquieu and many more. These people were the ones who then affected the French Revolution using their philosophies. Political, economical, and social problems in France during the 18th century led to the French Revolution. The political problem was the French monarchy itself. Monarchy is a system where the country is ruled by one single power(i.e. the king). While the economical problem was the falling of French economic. The social problem was that the society was divided into three estates : the clergy, the nobility, and the commoners. The French Revolution consisted of three phases. The first one was the Liberal Revolution, the second was the French Republic, and the third one was the Napoleonic era. During the first phase, which was influenced by John Locke, French people wanted to be liberated. According to John Locke everyone has inalienable human rights and government should protect these inalienable rights, not to take it away. But in fact, the French monarchy abused the humans natural rights. People did not have freedom and that is why they wanted to be liberated from the French monarchy. John Locke personally criticized monarchy and social inequality. He said that all humans are the same and they should be equal to one another. In this phase, Lockes philosophy fro…

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