John Locke (August 29, 1632- October 28, 1704) was a British philosopher. Locke is considered the first of the British Empiricists, but is equally important to social contract theory. His ideas had enormous influence on the development of epistemology and political philosophy, and he is widely regarded as one of the most influential Enlightenment thinkers and contributors to liberal theory. His writings influenced Voltaire and Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American Revolutionaries. This influence is reflected in the American Declaration of Independence. Locke’s theory of mind is often cited as the origin for modern conceptions of identify and “the self”, figuring prominently in the later works of philosophers such as David Hume, Jean –Jacques Rousseau and Immanuel Kant. Locke was the first philosopher to define the self through a continuity of “consciousness”. He also postulated that the mind was a “blank slate” or “tabula rasa”; that is, contrary to Cartesian or Christian philosophy, Locke maintained that people are born without innate ideas. He writes A Letter Concerning Toleration (1689), Two Treatises of Government (1689), An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690), and Some Thoughts Concerning Education (1695). Charles de Secondat, Baron of Montesquieu (January 18, 1689 in Bordeaux-February 10, 1755), was a French social commentator and political thinker who lived during the Era of the Enlightenment. He is famous for his articulation of the theory of separation of powers, taken for granted in modern discussions of government and implented in many constitutions throughout the world. He was largely responsible for the popularization of the terms feudalism and Byzantine Empire. He writes The Spirit of the Laws (1748), System of Ideas (1716), and Persian Letters (1721). Francois- Marie Arouet(21 November 1694-30 May 1778),better known by the pen name Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer,essayist,deist...
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