The era of the Enlightenment played a key role in shaping the world in which we now live. The eighteenth century saw the rise of new ideas about science, politics, religion and social life that challenged existing beliefs and social systems, from Europe to the Americas and parts of Asia and Africa. The legacies of the Enlightenment remain an ongoing topic of celebration and dispute. This course assists students to explore the Enlightenment in its historical context. Going beyond the traditional history of ideas, we will examine the major thinkers of the period within the framework of the national and international cultures that shaped their thought. We will consider the social origins of the Enlightenment; changing relationships between philosophers, the state and the public; competing visions of social and political life amongst Enlightenment thinkers; and the long-term legacy of the Enlightenment as a whole.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- demonstrate critical understanding of key themes and issues in the study of the Enlightenment;
- analyse and explicate major ideas associated with the history of the Enlightenment;
- explain relationships between the intellectual developments of the period and broader issues of historical context;
- use period sources to reconstruct attitudes, beliefs and arguments from the past; and
- construct evidence-based arguments about the origins, character and/or legacy of the Enlightenment.
- Research Essay of 2,500 words (50) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
- Exam of two hours duration, scheduled during final examination period OR synthetic essay to be completed during exam period (40) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
- Oral and/or written contribution to class activities (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]
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Workload130 hours of total student learning time made up from:
a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorial and tutorial-like activities; and
b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Weekly tutorial reading will be made available to students in electronic form.
Students seeking preliminary reading for the course might look at:
D. Edelstein, The Enlightenment: A Genealogy (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2010)
M. Fitzpatrick et al. (eds.), The Enlightenment World (Abingdon: Routledge, 2004)
I. Kramnick, The Portable Enlightenment Reader (Penguin: New York, 1995)
A. Pagden, The Enlightenment and Why it Still Matters (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015)
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
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Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.
|Class number||Class start date||Last day to enrol||Census date||Class end date||Mode Of Delivery||Class Summary|
|6617||24 Jul 2023||31 Jul 2023||31 Aug 2023||27 Oct 2023||In Person||N/A|