The Enlightenment Movie Study Guide Part One 1. What other names is often used when referring to the Enlightenment? The Enlightenment is often referred to as the Age of Reason 2. What was Sir Issac Newton’s role in the Enlightenment? Identified other natural laws to explain the workings of the universe 3. What changes did they encourage for social progress? Religious tolerance, education reforms, and prison reforms 4. What long-standing political belief did Enlightenment thinkers question? Monarchs rule by divine right
Part Two 5. What important idea did John Locke write about in the Two Treatises of Government? He argued that government should protect people’s natural rights to life, liberty, and property 6. What was Voltaire’s role in the Enlightenment Era? He wrote plays, novels, and essays attacking slavery, religious intolerance, and other social and political injustices. Passionate advocate for “Freedom of Speech” Part Three 7. What important political idea did Montesquieu introduce? Introduced the concept of “Check and balances” . How did Jean-Jacque Rousseau ideas differ from other Enlightenment philosophers? Criticized what he saw as the Enlightenment’s excessive reliance on reason, argued that people should trust their instincts and emotions Part Four 9. Explain the Main Idea behind Rousseau’s Social Contract? He explained that government should be based on a contract that allows people to rule themselves by adhering to the general will 10. Analyze which Enlightenment philosopher expressed the most democratic ideas.
Use at least three facts from the movies to support your answer. Charles de Montesquieu was a 18th century French philosopher who expressed the most democratic ideas during his time. He divided power between the king and parliament, much like the president and congress. He advocated dividing the government into three independent branches: the executive, legislative and judicial. He had a strong belief for equal distribution of power amongst the branches. Therefore, he introduced the concept of “Checks and Balances. ”