Analysis of Voltaire's Views on Challenging Authority

Good Essays
Society has always struggled with the issue of right and wrong; it is a historical moral battle that every human faces. Countless times throughout history there have been circumstances where the government or authority has become flawed and each citizen must decide to go along with it or stand up to it. The world has seen dictators like Stalin and Mao who killed anyone who opposed their rule. The world has seen peaceful leaders like Ghandi and MLK assassinated because of their opposition to the government. Voltaire’s claim states that it is dangerous to be right in matters when the established authorities are wrong. This statement has reminded true even to this day, in a world that is generally considered civilized. Nonconformity equated suicide. You can look at it this way; you can go ahead and ask all of the people that have “disappeared” over the course of time for being right when the established authorities are wrong. So as long as the established authorities don’t know that you’re right, you will be okay. Then again, the whole point of the first amendment ad the Declaration of Independence is standing up to your government and saying what you believe. You should be able to stand up and protest or disagree, but it is dangerous, especially when dealing with different types of government.
As time went on, people began to receive more and more rights, leaving authorities with less power. Now, the 21st century, this quote does not pertain to the peoples residing in the United States of America. Our government is revolved around the people, our rights are more significant, and even prejudice cannot stop someone from speaking their mind. The United States portrays our leader to be the president, but if we did happen to think our president is doing something wrong, we have every right to criticize the situation. We have our right to give our own opinion, where in other countries they have fewer rights, therefore a reason to be afraid of their authorities. We even

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Satisfactory Essays

    Right or wrong

    • 280 Words
    • 2 Pages

    between right and wrong? Well, it all depends on what one has been trained to believe. When answering this question one must include many factors, such as religious morals and values, environmental influences, society, and etc. One might believe that stealing to provide for their family is okay, but another knows that you do not steal, no matter what the circumstances may be because it is wrong. As with the given example, what one person may think is wrong, may be right to another person. Right and wrong…

    • 280 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    right and wrong

    • 625 Words
    • 3 Pages

    _____________________________________________________________ Right and Wrong What is right and wrong? It sounds simple enough but when you actually sit down and think about it, it becomes a very complicated question to answer. Longman dictionary defined right as a statement or piece of information that is correct and based on true fact while wrong is a behavior that is not morally right or not based on true fact. For me, right and wrong are hard to define, it depends on your perspective of life,…

    • 625 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Voltaire

    • 2016 Words
    • 9 Pages

    collection of written documents that Voltaire wrote between 1726 and 1729 on his experiences he had while staying in England. After its publication in French in 1734, many people of French ethnicity saw it as a bashing of the French government, and even a little bit on the Catholic religion. Voltaire does seem to be fairly favorable towards the English in his letters, which is understandable after he was exiled in his homeland of France multiple times. In many cases Voltaire saw in England what he wished…

    • 2016 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Voltaire

    • 615 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Voltaire Chapter 1: Candide lives in the castle of the baron of Thunder-ten-tronckh in Westphalia. Candide is the illegitimate son of the baron’s sister. His mother refused to marry his father because his father’s family tree could only be traced through “seventy-one quarterings.” The castle’s tutor, Pangloss, teaches “metaphysico-theologo-cosmolo-nigology” and believes that this world is the “best of all possible worlds.” Candide listens to Pangloss with great attention and faith. Miss…

    • 615 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Voltaire

    • 535 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Voltaire; A Pessimistic Individual Voltaire was a writer born in France; he lived in Britain for a few years, studying the two countries France and Britain. Voltaire enthusiastically voiced that the French were much less superior to Britain, even though France was his country of birth. Regardless of how many times he was incarcerated or exiled, he condemned France. Voltaire was born into a middle class bourgeois family and educated by the Jesuits where he was introduced to literature and…

    • 535 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    which India matters?

    • 593 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Commerce 392 Managing the Employment Relationship Professor Tom Knight Spring 2014 January 6, 2014  AGENDA:  Course Overview  Expectations & Evaluation  Readings & iClickers  Connect Web Site  Human Resource Management Simulation  How Do We Succeed in This Course? 2 Managing the Employment Relationship January 6, 2014 Managing the Employment Relationship  The central question: How does effective management of the relationship between employees & the employer…

    • 593 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Voltaire

    • 1191 Words
    • 5 Pages

    I, Aroute de Voltaire, am a very important historical figure. My artistic and political views and actions had such a great impact on the world and I should be forever remembered for that. I was successful from the start. As I always defended my strong beliefs. These personality traits have always been most evident regarding my opinion of any injustices and especially religious intolerance. I did not let any struggles that I may have endured in my life hold me back. I used those things to fuel my…

    • 1191 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    the principles of right and wrong that are accepted by an individual or a social group) "the Puritan ethic"; "a person with old-fashioned values" (a system of principles governing morality and acceptable conduct) motivation based on ideas of right and wrong the philosophical study of moral values and rules known as moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that addresses questions about morality—that is, concepts such as good and evil, right and wrong, virtue and vice, justice, etc. Major branches…

    • 2773 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Voltaire and Pope

    • 1727 Words
    • 7 Pages

    Polarized Viewpoints During the Enlightenment great thinkers began to question all things. Rather than just believe in something because an authority (church, political authority, society) claimed it to be true, these men and women set out to find the truth through reason, to provide explanations for all actions and events. Both Alexander Pope and Voltaire discuss some of the more common questions posed during the Enlightenment: What is the nature of humanity and what is our role in the greater…

    • 1727 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Nozick Right And Wrong

    • 1701 Words
    • 7 Pages

    Right and Wrong When it comes to the matters of legality and morality there is not a place showing visibly greater division than Harvard. First John Rawls believes that there should be equity in distribution and ownership of goods and provision of services. In contradiction, Robert Nozick argues that a person should be allowed to accumulate as much wealth as he may desire without any boundaries or restrictions, extreme capitalism. From a moderate angle to both extremities, comes in Charles Fried…

    • 1701 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays