Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine
$19.95 Buy and instantly download this paper now
An essay which compares the political philosophy of Edmund Burke with that of his leading critic, Thomas Paine. It argues that Burke's philosophy was less a reaction to the French Revolution than an idealization of the English constitution which was created for the purpose of disarming those in England who might have drawn upon revolutionary principles to foster change at home. Paine's philosophy is distinguished from Burke's chiefly by the fact that it takes a much more critical attitude to the past.
From the Paper:"Yet as praise for Burke's philosophy seems detached from any particular enthusiasm for the late 18th-century English state, it seems that Burke's political philosophy is routinely analyzed in a way that completely abstracts it from the political order it was intended to eulogize and exempt from further change. The problem with this abstract approach is that it bestows upon Burke's philosophy the power to legitimize any political order simply because it has subsisted into a venerable old age. In other words, if the Third Reich had lasted a thousand years, it would also be entitled to similar esteem as the fruit of generations of human wisdom. It is hard, however, to see the genuine wisdom in a philosophy which blithely ratifies the past, without developing clear criteria to distinguish between the parts which might be allowed to continue to subsist without harm, and those which will only yield harm if left uncorrected."
Cite this Comparison Essay:
Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine (2003, November 06) Retrieved May 10, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/comparison-essay/edmund-burke-and-thomas-paine-7796/
"Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine" 06 November 2003. Web. 10 May. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/comparison-essay/edmund-burke-and-thomas-paine-7796/>