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Discourse on Method
Western civ themes-
- knowledge and education theme
- morality and self realization
- The Second Treatise is Locke’s proposed solution to the political upheaval in England and
- in other modern countries. This text laid the foundation for modern forms of
- democracy and for the Constitution of the United States. Locke defines political power as the right to
- make laws for the protection and regulation of property. In his view, these
- laws only work because the people accept them and because they are for the
- public good. In chapter 2, Locke claims that all men are originally in a state
- of nature. A man in this original state is bound by the laws of nature, but he
- is otherwise able to live, act, and dispose of his possessions as he sees fit.
- More important, human beings, free from the arbitrary laws of other men, have
- an obligation to protect the interests of each other, since they are all
- equally children of God. They also have an obligation to punish those who go
- against God’s will and attempt to harm another by compromising his life, liberty,
- or possessions.
- Western civ theme-
- work and economic life
- 1.Pangloss gave instruction in
- metaphysico-theologico-cosmolo-nigology. He proved admirably that there cannot
- possibly be an effect without a cause and that in this best of all possible
- worlds the baron’s castle was the most beautiful of all castles and his wife
- the best of all possible baronesses. —It is clear, said he, that things cannot
- be otherwise than they are, for since everything is made to serve an end,
- everything necessarily serves the best end. Observe: noses were made to support
- spectacles, hence we have spectacles. Legs, as anyone can plainly see, were
- made to be breeched, and so we have breeches. . . . Consequently, those who say
- everything is well are uttering mere stupidities; they should say everything is
- for the best.
- 2. —A hundred times I wanted to kill myself,
- but always I loved life more. This ridiculous weakness is perhaps one of our
- worst instincts; is anything more stupid than choosing to carry a burden that
- really one wants to cast on the ground? to hold existence in horror, and yet to
- cling to it? to fondle the serpent which devours us till it has eaten out our
- heart? —In the countries through which I have been forced to wander, in the
- taverns where I have had to work, I have seen a vast number of people who hated
- their existence; but I never saw more than a dozen who deliberately put an end
- to their own misery.
- 3. The enormous riches which this rascal had
- stolen were sunk beside him in the sea, and nothing was saved but a single
- sheep. —You see, said Candide to Martin, crime is punished sometimes; this
- scoundrel of a Dutch merchant has met the fate he deserved. —Yes, said Martin;
- but did the passengers aboard his ship have to perish too? God punished the
- scoundrel, the devil drowned the others.
- 4. . . . [W]hen they were not arguing, the
- boredom was so fierce that one day the old woman ventured to say: —I should
- like to know which is worse, being raped a hundred times by negro pirates,
- having a buttock cut off, running the gauntlet in the Bulgar army, being
- flogged and hanged in an auto-da-fé, being dissected and rowing in the
- galleys—experiencing, in a word, all the miseries through which we have
- passed—or else just sitting here and doing nothing? —It’s a hard question, said
- Candide. These words gave rise to new reflections, and Martin in particular
- concluded that man was bound to live either in convulsions of misery or in the
- lethargy of boredom.
- 5. —You are perfectly right, said Pangloss;
- for when man was put into the garden of Eden, he was put there ut operaretur
- eum, so that he should work it; this proves that man was not born to take his
- ease. —Let’s work without speculating, said Martin; it’s the only way of
- rendering life bearable. The whole little group entered into this laudable
- scheme; each one began to exercise his talents. The little plot yielded fine
- crops . . . and Pangloss sometimes used to say to Candide: —All
- events are linked together in the best of possible worlds; for, after all, if
- you had not been driven from a fine castle by being kicked in the backside for
- love of Miss Cunégonde, if you hadn’t been sent before the Inquisition, if you
- hadn’t traveled across America on foot, if you hadn’t given a good sword thrust
- to the baron, if you hadn’t lost all your sheep from the good land of Eldorado,
- you wouldn’t be sitting here eating candied citron and pistachios.
- very well put, said Candide, but we must go and work our garden.
- Western Civ themes-
- intimacy and social life
- citizen and the state
John Stuart Mill
- In this book, Mill expounds his concept of individual freedom within the context of his ideas on
- history and the state. On Liberty depends on the idea that society progresses
- from lower to higher stages and that this progress culminates in the emergence
- of a system of representative democracy. It is within the context of this form
- of government that Mill envisions the growth and development of liberty. Mill discusses moral
- theory, where the only important thing is the happiness of the individual, and
- such happiness may only be attained in a civilized society, in which people are
- free to engage in their own interests, with all their skills and capabilities,
- which they have developed and honed in a good system of education. Thus, Mill
- stresses the fundamental value of individuality, of personal development, both
- for the individual and society for future progress.
- Themes of Western Civ-
- The citizen and the state
- Intimacy and social life
- 1. I saw—with shut eyes, but acute mental
- vision—I saw the pale student of unhallowed arts kneeling beside the thing he
- had put together. I saw the hideous phantasm of a man stretched out, and then,
- on the working of some powerful engine, show signs of life and stir with an
- uneasy, half-vital motion. Frightful must it be, for supremely frightful would
- be the effect of any human endeavor to mock the stupendous mechanism of the
- Creator of the world.
- 2. Did I request thee, Maker, from my clay
- mould me Man, did I solicit thee
From darkness to promote me?
- 3. What may not be expected in a country of
- eternal light?
- 4. So much has been done, exclaimed the soul
- of Frankenstein—more, far more, will I achieve; treading in the steps already
- marked, I will pioneer a new way, explore unknown powers, and unfold to the
- world the deepest mysteries of creation.
- 5. I, the miserable and the abandoned, am an
- abortion, to be spurned at, and kicked, and trampled on.
- Western civ themes-
- nature and the supernatural
7 themes of western civilization
- Greta loves when Ethan catches skinny kids especially in summer night moons
- 1. The good life
- 2. Work & economic life
- 3. The citizen & the state
- 4. Knowledge & education
- 5. Intimacy & social life
- 6. Nature & the supernatural
- 7. Morality & self-realization