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Voltaire Enlightenment
Voltaire's contribution to the history of Enlightenment philosophy is minimal, and he cannot be considered a significant or original thinker. [ In terms of the history of ideas, his single most important achievement was to have helped in the 1730s to introduce the thought of Newton and Locke to France (and so to the rest of the Continent); and even this achievement is, as Jonathan Israel has recently shown, hardly as radical as has sometimes been thought: the English thinkers in question served essentially as a deistic bulwark against the more radical (atheistic) currents of thought in the
Spinozist tradition. Voltaire's deist beliefs, reiterated throughout his life, came to appear increasingly outmoded and defensive as he grew older and as he became more and more exercised by the spread of atheism. Voltaire's failure to produce an original philosophy was, in a sense, counterbalanced by his deliberate cultivation of a philosophy of action; his "common sense" crusade against superstition and prejudice and in favour of religious toleration was his single greatest contribution to the progress of Enlightenment. "Rousseau writes for writing's sake", he declared in a letter of 1767, "I write to act." ]
Expert answered|bibiolay17|Points 71|
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Asked 2/22/2013 1:06:04 PM
Updated 5/31/2023 12:28:05 AM
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Voltaire Enlightenment include: his 'common sense' crusade against superstition and prejudice and in favour of religious toleration was his single greatest contribution to the progress of Enlightenment.
Added 5/31/2023 12:28:05 AM
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