Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Age of Enlightenment

The Enlightenment era took place in the late 17th and 18th century in Europe, and it was an extreme cultural movement. In my opinion, this is when art and music started to make a larger impact on the world all around. In regards to people, the two names that stood out the most to me were Thomas Hobbes and John Locke. I remembered learning about their ideologies and ways in high school; they both promoted opposite things, but made a large impact on society. What stood out to me the most when we learned more about the Age of Enlightenment was the opera that we had watched on Friday, Don Giovanni. I have heard operas before, but honestly I have never been a huge fan of them. The fact that I can’t understand what they are saying is very confusing to me. However, watching it up close and personal in class made me realize that the amount of facial expressions they make and the body movements that they do helps you understand it just as much. I couldn’t take my eyes off of the screen and I thought that their voices were beautiful. If I were living in the Enlightenment era, I would probably go see operas all of the time for their entertainment value. The fact that they are not as popular in modern age is a little disappointing. I think people are too consumed with the pop culture that surrounds us now to absorb the beauty that we can find in this type of music. People of my era especially are not introduced to this music very often, making us less likely to listen to it, unless we do it on our own time. The Age of Enlightenment speaks for itself with its title, because I believe that it enlightened people to think in many different ways. With all of the forms of art, music, and culture presented during this time, people were typically more intellectual and tuned into society. I believe that is something that we are missing from our culture nowadays. We are too consumed with everyone’s lives but our own, and we feed on the drama and existence of people we think are higher than us. However, in reality, if everyone just focused on themselves and what’s surrounding them closely, they would be able to realize the beauty that they can achieve. Everyone is capable of making art, music, or anything that would help the greater good. If more people went to art museums, or the opera, or even a town meeting, they would be able to realize that there is so much more that they can offer, or what the world can offer them. The opera made me open my eyes to realize that I can listen to other types of music rather than what is considered “popular”. I think the Age of Enlightenment can repeat itself, with the talent and capability that is left in the many people on this Earth. So I say, listen to the opera, create a work of art, compose an orchestra, create a new government, whatever you think would be the right path for you, because the Age of Enlightenment happened because people pushed themselves to achieve greatness, and it can most definitely happen again. 


  1. I completely agree with you with the fact that the Enlightenment was a change an extreme shift in culture. Looking at music today, it is safe to say that the pop music is made with the thought of what the public wants to listen to and what gets their action (*cough* Miley Cyrus). I have to also agree with you with the fact that not a lot of people in this era are listening to the classics. A lot of the music we have today, including folk music, wouldn't exist without the idea of achieving greatness and creating new ideas.

  2. I thought you did a really good job on your blog. I also really loved the opera Don Giovanni! I personally have never been a big fan of them either and I found this opera really captivating. I was mesmerized by their beautiful voices and the dramatic storyline! I agree with you on the fact that today people of are generation are to submerged in popular music when there are so many fascinating genres of music. We also can become to into what is happening with the famous people that this can cause a disconnect in society. Everyone should try to better themselves and become more engaged in society.

  3. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could go see operas on a regular basis these days? I wouldn't even know where to go for an opera. What a change that is from the Enlightenment. Too bad they're too expensive to go to for college kids on a budget.