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Humanism and Renaissance: The Revivals of Classical Learning

The shift in the view of the state was reflected in a number of ways by different theorists. The republican form of government was developed during the era of the Roman Republic and then revived during the Italian Renaissance in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries.

In the broadest sense, humanism was an educational movement, and for the humanists the classical writings were unique instruments for extending the consciousness of human beings:

The humanists placed their emphasis on the human being as that individual would be revealed in the written records of classical antiquity. Humanism was a secular movement, and as such it inherently questioned the authority of religious doctrine in social, literary, and political thought. Classical scholarship was a mark of the Humanist, with the revival of learning of the Renaissance period, which included as well a sense of mysticism in the imaginings of men of wide interests bent on bringing the Divine Spirit into every sphere of human thought. The Humanist was also penetrated by the sense of the beauty and the mystery of life. The Humanist saw that philosophy could be more profound and have better scientific tools at its command for investigating the ways of the world (Maynard 41-42).

The human-centered nature of Renaissance expression can be seen in a number of artworks. Donatello was considered the father of Renaissance sculpture and produced a number of works during the early part of the fifteenth century that embodied a certain realism that would influence subsequent artists. Donatello did not follow the traditional representations of certain religious images but developed his own ideas based on a close reading of biblical texts. He was not realistic in terms of using contemporary subjects but in avoiding the idealized representations that had been accepted for so long as the way things had to be (Chilvers, Osborne, and Farr 148-149).

Brunelleschi was an early Renaiss...

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Humanism and Renaissance: The Revivals of Classical Learning. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 14:40, August 19, 2017, from
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