Authors and their Works

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Authors and their Works
2012-03-06 12:08:50
HWC 205 Midterm

HWC 205
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  1. Rene Descartes
    Discourse on Method

    • Western civ themes-
    • knowledge and education theme
    • morality and self realization
  2. John Locke
    Second Treatise

    • Summary:
    • 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
  3. Voltaire

    • Quotes:
    • 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. 
—That is
    • very well put, said Candide, but we must go and work our garden.

    • Western Civ themes-
    • intimacy and social life
    • citizen and the state

  4. John Stuart Mill
    On Liberty

    • Summary
    • 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
  5. Mary Shelley

    • Quotes
    • 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
  6. 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