The Enlightenment was a time of greatness and advances in European History, but it can also be argued as a time of turmoil and destruction. During this time in European history, many great philosophers, or thinkers, thought of new ideas and methods of governing and social interactions to increase the prosperity of people.
These ideas changes the way people felt about divine right authority by showing that individuals are born with inalienable rights.
Arbitrary punishment was a problem during the reign of monarchs. Torture and suppression of ideas were a constant threat for both the philosophers and the citizens. A philosopher named Beccaria believed that reason could be used in determines the type and severity of punishment of a person. This was later used in the US Bill of Rights. Because of Beccaria's idea, torture was reduced and abolished in Europe and North America. Another proposed reform was freedom of thought and expression which was one of the freedoms philosophers by the name of Voltaire fought for. Since his voice was constantly being suppressed by the monarchs, he proposed freedom of thought and expression, which later proved to play a vital part in the US Bill of Rights and the French Declarations of the Rights of Man and Citizen. In the US Bill of Rights, freedom of speech was influenced a great deal by this one idea by Voltaire. Consequences of the ideas of these two philosophers ultimately caused the development of the English parliament.
A very big problem experienced thought Europe was a lack of equality for women. A philosopher by the name of Mary Wollstonecraft proposed a reform for women's equality. These ideas came from the standards that women possessed during the times; women should be wives and mothers, no more and no less. Because of this way of thinking, women's education and rights was given a low priority. Many people, both men and women attempted to reform this. This caused the crea…

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