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The Scottish Enlightenment - Essay Example

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How does the Court of Session’s decision in Knight v Wedderburn reflect the ideas of philosophers of the Scottish Enlightenment? Introduction The Scottish Enlightenment of the 1700s is often described by reference to David’s Hume’s conceptualization of “the Science of Man.”1 Scottish philosophers, scientists and scholars often refer to Hume’s Science of Man as a means of understanding the way that philosophers of the Scottish Enlightenment expressed concepts and beliefs that defined social constructs and man’s historical journeys.2 Moral philosophers such as John Locke and Isaac Newton essentially established the stage for debates on a number of issues relative to the progressio…
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Download file to see previous pages This paper is therefore divided into two parts. The first part of this paper analyses and explains the philosophical explanations of human nature and the development of the mental process and how those ideas reflected concepts and ideas during the Scottish Enlightenment. The second part of this paper analyses how the decision in Knight v Wedderburn reflects an expression of these philosophical underpinnings. I. The Scottish Enlightenment Moral philosophers of the Scottish Enlightenment were strong advocates of natural law and morality. Lord Kames in particular expressed the view that man was governed not only by the laws of the land but also by the “laws of nature” both morally and physically.6 Essentially it was predicted that the natural progression of man was based on an empirical analysis of the mental processes which was developed over time. This natural progression was predicated on the belief that man was by nature a rational being with the ability to pursue what he or she desired in a moral way.7 By taking this approach to nature and morality, moral philosophers of the Scottish Enlightenment ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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