The American Revolution And The Enlightenment

1531 Words Mar 9th, 2016 7 Pages
The American Revolution brought about changes in the way the world viewed religion, science, and government. The Enlightenment, an European movement that affected social customs and political ideals not only in Europe, but also in America, brought these new ideas and changes to light. Enlightenment’s main goal was to seek out a better understanding of the natural world through reason. Reason is an individual trait, and, according to Enlightenment thinkers, this justifies that power should be help by the people. There was a desire by many colonists to form a government based off democratic ideals with balanced powers, and these principles can be traced back to the
Enlightenment movement.
One of the most influential Enlightenment thinkers was John Locke who rejected the claim to the Crown, and he believed that individuals held the right to revolt against a tyrannical government. Locke argued that rebellion against the government was acceptable if that government failed to protect the natural rights of the individual including life, liberty, and property. Locke proclaimed, “Government has no other end, but the preservation of property” (Locke). Locke also believed that a strong powerful government would use its authority to control the governed. Because of this, Locke believed the government should be divided into different branched with a system of

2 checks and balances, allowing each branch to hold only the power needed to fulfill its given function. Locke believed that…
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