Heroes of the Enlightenment

From search engines and social media to philosophies of government, finance, manufacture and law, many aspects of modern life owe their existence to a single defining era: the 18th century’s Age of Enlightenment. In the space of barely 100 years, Western deference to God and royalty gave way to a belief that humans had the power — and the right — to understand their own nature and the world around them unaided by authority. Filmed in locations across Britain, France, Germany, Portugal and the United States, this two-part series shines a light on some of the key ideas and personalities of that era. A BBC production.

Episodes

Heroes of the Enlightenment Changes in Society (Part 2 of 2)

By the end of the 18th century, many Enlightenment ideals about society had been put into practice by three remarkable men: Nicolas de Condorcet, who advocated for civil rights, the abolishment of slavery and gender equality; Thomas Jefferson, principal author of the Declaration of Independence; and Frederick the Great, whose “enlightened absolutism” meant religious tolerance in Prussia. This program profiles ...
  • 2011
  • 00:52:27
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/12/2020

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Heroes of the Enlightenment The Power of Knowledge (Part 1 of 2)

The 18th century movement known as the Age of Enlightenment saw the rise of intellectuals who endorsed freedom of thought apart from the dictates of state and religion, thus laying the foundation for advances in science, social philosophy and culture. This program discusses the contributions of Immanuel Kant, Isaac Newton, Denis Diderot, the Marquês de Pombal and Erasmus Darwin. Part 1 ...
  • 2011
  • 00:52:15
  • 15-17
  • Added on: 03/12/2020

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