cover of book

Modern Europe and the Enlightenment
by Rumy Hasan
Sussex Academic Press, 2022
Cloth: 978-1-78976-090-3 | Paper: 978-1-78976-091-0 | eISBN: 978-1-78284-713-7

In June 2019, in an interview given to the Financial Times;, Russian President Vladimir Putin baldly declared that the liberal idea had outlived its purpose as the public turned against immigration, open borders, and multiculturalism. If liberalism has indeed come into conflict with the interests of the overwhelming majority of the population, then evidence should show that it is in retreat. Ipso facto, so should Enlightenment values that underpin liberal democracy. A key aim of the book is to garner evidence. Is the liberal idea characterised by Putin accurate or rather a caricature divorced from reality? Modern Europe and the Enlightenment ;explores whether the policy stance on the issues outlined above, and a host of similar topics being tackled by European governments, are consonant with Enlightenment values. The Enlightenment covered an array of issues on every aspect of life wherein reason was rigorously applied to solve problems, gain understanding, and discover facts. It was a successor to the scientific revolution. The assumption is that the Enlightenment left a profound legacy on Western Europe, which lingers till the present day. The following broad areas of Enlightenmentvalues are covered: reason, human rights, religion and secularism, freedom of expression, political and economic open-mindedness, race, and women's issues. The book examines the extent to which Enlightenment values are adhered to in various parts of modern Europe delineated into Western Europe, the progenitor of the Enlightenment; former communist countries that have joined the European Union; and former communist countries that are not in the EU. Discussion also focuses on the modern Counter-Enlightenment movement.

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