Humanism During the Renaissance


The Renaissance was an incredibly important turning point in 
Western Intellectual and Cultural Tradition. All of these changes
centered around the idea of Humanism -- in which, people became less 
"God Centered" and more "Human-centered". I have narrowed down these 
changes, and will discuss in detail, these changes in three major 
categories: Political, Education, and the Humanism of Arts.

 The major pollical changes of the Renaissance were from the 
old Feudal System of the Middle Ages into a more flexible and liberal 
class system. This was most noticeable in Italy (particularly in 
Florence), where the divisions consisted of the old rich, the new rich 
nobles, the middle class, and the lower middle class(The poor didn't 
count). This created great conflict between these social divisions. 
The new rich consisted of successful merchants, capitalists, and 
bankers innovators of new systems of making money. The Humanism 
philosophy was also a very popular with the people and many political 
leaders rose to high positions with support of these ideals. Three 
humanists even became chancellors of Florence -- they used their 
rhetorical skills to strongly rally the people of Florence against 
their enemies.

 The great changes in Education of the Renaissance were 
inspired at first, by the desire of Humanists to be wise and to speak
eloquently. The idea of useful education for the people, and very 
"well rounded" schooling in many different fields of learning were the 
new defined goals of Renaissance education. People all over 
(Especially in Florence) revived the Ancient Greek studies of Plato, 
Aristotle, and many others. People began seriously questioning what 
these people said and re-developed the "Scientific Theory" in which 
you didn't just accept whatever was said to you, but you tested the 
truth of it.

 In the area of Humanism and the Arts, Renaissance Artists no 
longer were subordinate to the interests and the values of the Clergy, 
and were able to create anything of their "artistic will". Both men 
and women were now able to appreciated arts beyond just religious 
themes. Artists could also now take advantage of new techniques, such 
as oil painting and linear perspective to enhance the quality of their 
works. All of the great artists of the time used became who they were 
solely because of this new artistic freedom that the Renaissance 
brought them. These artists also created works that were more complex 
than before. Taking advantage of this, artists such as Leonardo da 
Vinci -- the ultimate example of the Renaissance man working in all 
types of educational fields, and Michelangelo who was possibly the 
most famous artist and sculptor in history.

 As you can see, the Renaissance was to great extent and a 
major turning point in history from the Middle Ages in just about
every element of the Society. The Renaissance have truly become the 
original roots of our culture from the West. This was was the time 
when people questioned the past, and decided to go back to the schools 
of learning taking the past of the Greeks into their present to make a 
better future.


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