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Effects of the Enlightenment

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Effects of the Enlightenment

Many men and women had significant impacts on the historical period known as the Enlightenment. Three men that had such an impact on the Enlightenment were Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Montesquieu. Each of these men had different theories and ideas about what type of government there should be. This resulted in many people having different opinions on how the government should rule their country. Due to this, the Enlightenment was a very chaotic and opinionated period. During the seventeenth century, England was on the verge of a civil war. It was split between an absolute monarchy and a self governed society. One man who believed in absolute monarchy was Thomas Hobbes. He believed in totalitarianism, which is when the government controls every aspect of your life. He believed this because he said that people could not have a self governed society because people are naturally corrupt and that a self governed society would cause chaos. Hobbes also supported absolutism because there was a non-educated population, and if that population governed itself, there would be craziness. He advocated that an absolute monarchy would protect the people and bring peace throughout the society. To share his ideas with the rest of the world, he published a book called Leuathon. This book shared his beliefs about absolutism. Hobbes felt very strong about his beliefs and he had many supporters. But there were other enlightened thinkers who disagreed with him. John Locke was also an enlightened thinker but disagreed with Hobbes. Locke believed in a limited government. He believed in this because a limited government was established to protect the people and their rights. Locke stated that the people had a right to overthrow the government if it violated their natural rights. The natural rights were liberty, life, and property. Property was one of the rights because land equals wealth. Locke based his theories on natural law and social contracts. A social contract is when people create a government to protect their natural rights, and if the government fails

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