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Classical humanism & modern societies

Classical humanism & modern societies

Postprzez Klementyna Glińska » Cz paź 01, 2009 8:54 am

Athena S. Leoussi

CLASSICAL HUMANISM AND
MODERN SOCIETIES
\"Society\" 5 (2000), s. 70-77 (cyt. s. 70)

\"Humanism, the feeling of fellowship among human beings and that peculiar, positive conception of man, not as sin (soul) and dust which is how Christianity came to describe mankind, but as mind and body, i.e., reason and form, was born in ancient Greece. The first \"Great Awakening\" to what the Victorian humanists described as\"the presence of man\" occurred in the so-called Golden or Classical Age of Greece, in 5th century BC Athens. The European Enlightenment which arrived, almost, but not entirely independently at the same conclusion, only corroborated, as Karl Popper would say, the intimations of Greek philosophy and of Greek institutions which it revived and amplified. Although the European Enlightenment is our direct intellectual and emotional ancestor, nevertheless, it belongs to a long series of such\"awakenings\" which found in classical humanism their fullest expression. It was the Western attachment in the fifteenth century to classical humanism which led to that cultural transformation which we call the Renaissance, or, for that matter, the age of humanism, from which the Christian Church never fully recovered, and which, in its momentous implications has made us what we are. The development of a positive view of man has been a crucial factor in the development of liberal societies.This positive view of man must be seen in its proper context. Firstly, not as a spontaneous or instinctive human attitude but rather as a distinctively West European judgment on mankind which came to dominate modern Western culture and institutions despite its many detractors, cynics and Hobbesians who described human life as a war against the world.\"
Klementyna Glińska
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