The Enlightenment in the City of Lights: Voltaire and Rousseau with Samuél Lopez-Barrantes - Context Travel

The Enlightenment in the City of Lights: Voltaire and Rousseau with Samuél Lopez-Barrantes


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With a focus on Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s humble beginnings and his political philosophy that changed the world, as well as Voltaire’s celebrity and his monumental Candide, this seminar will address why this duo remain two of the most important writers and philosophers in human history.

The Age of Enlightenment shined brightest in Paris’ Latin Quarter. It was here that the Enlightenment’s most important thinkers—Rousseau, Voltaire, and Diderot—all drank their coffee. With an in-depth look at Rousseau’s Social Contract, Voltaire’s satirical fiction, and a deep dive into the philosophies that inspired American revolutionaries and the French Revolution, this seminar examines the intellectual origins of “democracy” and “freedom,” ideas that would come to liberate—and oppress—the modern world.

Led by Samuél Lopez-Barrantes, an expert in literature and intellectual history, this interactive seminar will cover the two stories and ideas of Voltaire and Rousseau, the most influential French thinkers of the Enlightenment era. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of the history of the Latin Quarter in the context of philosophy, literature, and the French Revolution.

Samuél is a novelist and musician who has lived in Paris since 2010. He holds an M.A. in European Society from University College London and an MFA in creative writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Samuél teaches literature and creative writing at Paris’ Sorbonne. He is also in an American folk-rock trio, Slim & The Beast, whose self-titled EP has already caught the attention of Rolling Stone France.

This conversation is not suitable for children under age 16

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
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Guest did not leave comment

A
A.

A remarkable 'tour d'horizon' of these two key intellectual figures, full of background, illuminating quotations, and personal history. The presenter is extremely knowledgable and able to share his passion for the subject with ease.

J
J.
Another wonderful experience

Samuèl is my favorite Context presenter. He has an amazing clarity in his presentation and his organizing of ideas really open up complex subjects and give them an accessible approach. I have always wanted to study more about the origin of modern philosophy and political thought but always felt too overwhelmed to initiate study on my own. Samuél brings these ideas to life in a format that encourages me to continue on and study more. Cannot recommend him more highly.

K
K.K.
Voltaire and Rousseau

Samuel Lopez-Barrantes is always well versed on the subjects of his presentations. You will gain knowledge by attendance.

K
K.D.

Excellent, clear talk by very well informed and interesting speaker.

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
100%
(5)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
E
E.M.

Guest did not leave comment

A
A.

A remarkable 'tour d'horizon' of these two key intellectual figures, full of background, illuminating quotations, and personal history. The presenter is extremely knowledgable and able to share his passion for the subject with ease.

J
J.
Another wonderful experience

Samuèl is my favorite Context presenter. He has an amazing clarity in his presentation and his organizing of ideas really open up complex subjects and give them an accessible approach. I have always wanted to study more about the origin of modern philosophy and political thought but always felt too overwhelmed to initiate study on my own. Samuél brings these ideas to life in a format that encourages me to continue on and study more. Cannot recommend him more highly.

K
K.K.
Voltaire and Rousseau

Samuel Lopez-Barrantes is always well versed on the subjects of his presentations. You will gain knowledge by attendance.

K
K.D.

Excellent, clear talk by very well informed and interesting speaker.