10-16-07 - David Sharon The Renaissance o Copernicus sets...

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David Sharon 10/16/2007 The Renaissance o Copernicus sets up his radical system In order to understand this need to understand the cultural and intellectual background that he was working from. The new learned culture affected everything The cultural movement gets started in the 15 th century in Italy The general intellectual movement that characterizes the renaissance is one called Humanism o Humanism – Humanists were originally teachers who studied a variant of the old Trivium at the universities Their claims were to a high value of rhetoric These claims resonated so well because Italy was set up as a bunch of fairly small city-states and the teachers reckoned that if they could learn better rhetoric people could become wiser and more moral people and thus wiser and more moral citizens (people wanted their kids to be able to be in control or be able to be important citizens). The teachers argued that the education they could provide was more important than the Aristotelian teachers. This type of education had been offered in a much more downgraded version as a variant of the trivium but now it is becoming much more important. Developing the ability to imitate Cicero (really any writers from antiquity) would allow you to develop the skills that would be like him. Humanism wasn’t just a cult of Cicero, humanists regardists the culture of antiquity as the highest level that we had ever reached and so wanted to revive this culture by revolving the political and moral virtues. Humanists like to say that their teaching of eloquent rhetoric would give you a better education than you could get from scholastic teachings at a university. This shows their scorn for anything that counted as medieval learning.
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