Enlightenment Thought and Inquiry
The Enlightenment was an intellectual movement to include science into everyday life, apply social behaviors and make practical applications to science. (Darty) During this time, there was always lots of debate of science and religion and a lot of philosophers made progress towards those topics. Places such as reading clubs and voluntary associations allowed for social and intellectual interactions to emerge in growing cities. (Darty) Women were an important part of the Enlightenment. Antoine- Leonard Thomas wrote about how there was decay of men and women's roles, contributing to the "Woman Question". (Darty) This was a time to use scientific methods to examine and understand all aspects of life and to believe that nature is ordered and simple unchangeable laws govern. (Darty)
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This is significant because this was a time where science was actually applied to the human life. The people used science to help further understandings and to progress in new ideas that most likely wouldn't have come about without the used of science. It connects to the studies of Western Civilization because the Enlightenment is a big part of Western Europe history and it is a big section for learning. The Enlightenment was a great time period in the West.
Enter the Dragon: The Beginnings of English Chinoiserie, 1680-1710
One of the very first examples of the Chinoiserie is the Covered Punch Bowl which was copied by English potters and combined with conventional western ornaments. The figures and foliage used to decorate the bowl fascinated Europe. (Enter the Dragon) Another English idea that may have been influenced by the east was adding colors to ceramics other than blue and white. English added new colors to their pottery after the Japanese used dark red and gold colors. (Enter the Dragon) In London, they often mixed Chinoiserie with indigenous English imagery and used it on various pottery, such as mugs. (Enter the Dragon) Most Chinoiserie was displayed in intimate spaces and beginning in 1600, Europe started collecting trinkets of Chinoiserie and displayed them in small cabinets. (Enter the Dragon) The Western world was influenced by the east as they combined some of their principles with a few from around the globe.
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This is significant because it shows how the Western world didn't just advance on it's own. It used ideas from other places and incorporated them into their ideas that they had. It connects historically to Western Civilization because new art was being collected and produced during this time and this gives a little more in depth view on where some of the art comes from.
Of Elephants and Roses: Encounters with French Natural History, 1790-1830
Between 1789 and 1830, Paris was the center of life sciences in the Western world. (APS) The Jardin des Plantes and the Empress Josephine were two sites that produced new scientific knowledge, improved agricultural productivity and diversity, and helped promote economic prosperity. (APS) There are many objects that have never been exhibited in the United States including fossilized mastodon teeth sent by Thomas Jefferson to French scientists, a stuffed Australian black swan owned by Empress Josephine, and acorns and oak leaves sent to France by a man dispatched to North America. (APS) An exhibit in the museum titled "Hunting for Trees" showed how France's decreasing forests led to a search for useful and beautiful trees such as the Oak. (APS) Another exhibit titled "Everything Giraffe" showed how a baby American giraffe was led from Marseilles to Paris and showed the connections between scientists in Paris and Philadelphia. (APS)
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It is significant because the French had a lot to do with the Enlightenment period. France produced many scholars and philosophers that were able to create new ideas and connect with people in various places around the world. It connects to Western Civilization because the French in the Enlightenment period were very significant and proved to be helpful in incorporating science into daily life.