The Age of Enlightenment, Romanticism - The Basics of Philosophy

The Age of Enlightenment

The Age of Enlightenment is another world phenomenon, another take-off of humanity. It, like the Renaissance, corresponds to the emergence of capitalist relations in a number of countries in which it reaches its heights. Undoubtedly, it can be regarded as the successor of the Renaissance at a new historical stage. This is evidenced by the most important characteristics:

• cult of the mind;

• the cult of science;

• The cult of man;

• the idea of ​​progress, first realized in this era,

• the idea of ​​universal equality, primarily legal;

• The idea of ​​educating the masses and the hope of enlightened rulers;

• The fight against religion and metaphysical teachings that justify the existence of God;

• problems of the best social order;

• Historical optimism, belief in the progress of humanity;

• Approach to historicism as a type of thinking.

Not all the ideas of the Enlightenment turned out to be productive. Some of them were clearly idealistic (for example, the ideas of equality or enlightened rulers). Between the Enlighteners, as it happened in all epochs, there was also a fierce ideological struggle. Nevertheless, the philosophy of the Enlightenment has set the direction of the movement to the whole of humanity until the end of the millennium.

Today around these ideas is a serious controversy. In particular, concern is excessive rationalization, the opposition of man to nature, its isolation from the Integrity, the Cosmos, his humanistic claims.

Guilty Is there an epoch that is more than two centuries distant from our time? It seems that this question is purely rhetorical. Any good idea can be brought to the point of absurdity. Ideas, like people, are children of their time. People

comprehend them, discard unpromising, develop useful ones. They make a great and are mistaken, reach the tops and fall into the abyss. And only from them, or rather from us, it depends which ideas and in what form we take with us to the future.


Romanticism was usually considered to be a phenomenon of art, and not surprisingly - its main representatives, as a rule, were engaged in artistic creation. However, today it is time to reconsider this limited and superficial point of view. It's time to consider romanticism not only as a special kind of artistic creativity, but also as a special type of philosophizing , the most important stage in the development of European culture. The error of previous "connoisseurs" Romanticism was that they took the form (art) for the content that appeared in this form. The content of the intellectual activity of the Romantics was the refutation of the cult of reason typical of the Enlightenment, and the search for their own methods of cognizing the world, which they found in art, putting forward the position of its transformative role in life. Thus, they asserted dominance in the world of the spiritual principle, subordination of matter to the spirit. This was the answer-refutation of the absolutization of the mind by the Enlightenment. They saw the way to life harmony in the spiritual development of an individual endowed with unlimited and unique creative possibilities that, in the opinion of most Romantics, could most adequately manifest themselves only in art.

Romanticism was a necessary and logical step in the development of philosophy. So, he played a huge role in the formation of German classical philosophy. In addition to the direct representatives of romanticism - F. Schlegel, F. Schleiermacher, L. Tik, the great German educators Schiller and Goethe, no less the great Swiss Rousseau, the giants of German classical philosophy Kant and Fichte gave their tribute to different degrees and at different stages of their development.

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