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The Enlightenment Theory and Rationalism - Research Paper Example

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The purpose of this paper is to compare two literary books; "The Gay Science" by Friedrich Nietzsche and "Notes from the Underground" by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Also, the author describes the concept of faith in writing about consciousness and self-consciousness of a human being…
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The Enlightenment Theory and Rationalism
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Download file to see previous pages The book The Gay Science was written in the year 1882, an era when Christianity was going through a lot of reforms and revivals. It is also known as the first great awakening in America. The 18th century saw the development of Congregationalist, Presbyterian, Baptist, and new Methodist churches. The creation of Pietism in Germany also occurred in this era and is considered a part of The Great Awakening (historyworld.net, HISTORY OF CHRISTIANITY). Furthermore, it was also an era of enlightenment or an era of reason. It was when the British and other European nations started to question the cultural and societal norms that were practiced regularly (history.com, enlightenment). The novel Notes from underground might have been written in response to a novel what is to be done? (1863) is a revolutionary novel written by Chernyshevsky. This era saw many authors who wrote about egoism and that life could be made perfect only by applying the concept of reasoning and enlightening our self-interest. Dostoevsky was particularly interested in the rational egoist’s theory which evolved from social liberalism in the year 1840 (Sparksnotes.com, SparkNote on Notes from Underground). Nietzsche writes against the religious reforms and revivals of the era and promotes polytheism and call Christianity as a skeptic. The main theme of the book is ‘God is dead’ which is how he mainly criticized the Christian faith (Strongreading.blogspot.com, Strong Reading: Nietzsche, Friedrich - The Gay Science, Preface, Book V). Like Nietzche, Friedrich also was against the prevailing egoism in his society which is why he wrote in response to Chernyshevsky who is considered a rational egoist (Sparksnotes.com, SparkNote on Notes from Underground).
The book Gay Science is famous because it has given importance to knowledge and art above science and the open declaration that ‘God is dead’ and promotes the idea of everlasting life. The statement ‘God is dead’ can also be stated showing that God was alive before the enlightenment because, before enlightenment, everything in Europe and Germany was observed from religious and spiritual points of view whether it be the field of science, knowledge or even wisdom. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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