The Birth Of The Modern Mind: The Intellectual History Of The 17th And 18th Centuries (The Great Courses)

The Birth Of The Modern Mind: The Intellectual History Of The 17th And 18th Centuries (The Great Courses) - Alan Charles Kors This is probably the best introduction to the Enlightenment Age I've yet to come across. He starts the story at the end of the Reformation and the real beginnings of scientific inquiry which lays the ground work for the Enlightenment. It takes the wearing down of proof by authority with the Aristotelian concept of knowledge through experience to lead to the clear thinking about nature and human's real place in the universe. He covers the topics mostly by considering the development of thought as a long series of conversations overtime with many great thinkers. Alan Kors presents each topic clearly and he will wow you with his summaries of the great thinkers (in half hour segments). I'm still awestruck by Pierre Bayle's arguments for per-determinism.

I highly recommend this course. The only caveat is some people might find Kors' accent bothersome. I never do focus on accents. I'm grateful I never had a teacher who was a entertaining as Kors is on the 17th and 18th history of thought, because if I had I would have majored in history and would be looking for a job.