Ch 13: Philosophy and Nonfiction

About This Chapter

Watch video lessons, and learn about the different aspects of philosophy and nonfiction. These lessons are just a portion of our available course materials.

Philosophy and Nonfiction - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives

Many nonfiction pieces take on a philosophical angle. There are plenty of examples throughout history, such as 'Defense of Poesy' and 'Common Sense.' Many writers used their fame to help them voice their opinions on issues ranging from politics to woman's rights to their feelings on poetry. As you will learn in this chapter, these writers often had a profound effect on events during their lifetimes. These lessons will cover a variety of writers who created important pieces. Lessons will also introduce various ideas that became a focus for some famous written pieces. Some of the people that you will learn about in this chapter include:

  • John Stuart Mill
  • William Godwin
  • John Ruskin
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Francis Bacon

VideoObjective
Philip Sidney and the 'Defense of Poesy' Study this essay that takes a look at poetry.
John Stuart Mill: Utilitarianism, Quotes and Theory Learn about the work of Mill, including his major philosophy.
Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin: Politics and Essays Take a look at the relationship between these two writers and examples of their work.
John Ruskin: Victorian Thought and Criticism Examine Victorian era criticism.
Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening: Sermons & Biography Explore sermons from the Great Awakening, such as 'Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.'
Benjamin Franklin: Quotes and Autobiography Discover who Benjamin Franklin was and what he did as an inventor and writer.
Thomas Paine: Common Sense and The Crisis Find out about Paine's influence on the Revolutionary War.
Francis Bacon: History, Ideas and Legacy Study Bacon's ideas and legacy.

8 Lessons in Chapter 13: Philosophy and Nonfiction
Philip Sidney and the Defense of Poesy

1. Philip Sidney and the Defense of Poesy

Sir Philip Sidney: courtier, soldier, governor, poet and critic. Learn all about this multifaceted Elizabethan celebrity and his massive effect on the worlds of poetry and literary scholarship.

John Stuart Mill: Utilitarianism, Quotes and Theory

2. John Stuart Mill: Utilitarianism, Quotes and Theory

Join us for this analysis of nineteenth century British philosopher John Stuart Mill, whose radical political and ethical ideas based in utilitarianism have had a profound effect in the final frontier and on our current political landscape.

Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin:  Politics and Essays

3. Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin: Politics and Essays

Meet THE power couple of the 1790s: Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin. Watch how Wollstonecraft inspires the feminist movement, and thrill to Godwin's early anarchic ways! Plus: how does one betray the other, even after death?

John Ruskin: Victorian Thought and Criticism

4. John Ruskin: Victorian Thought and Criticism

From his beginnings as a poet and painter to his status as one of Victorian England's foremost social critics, learn all about John Ruskin's influence on the worlds of art and economic structure.

Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening: Sermons & Biography

5. Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening: Sermons & Biography

Jonathan Edwards was an American minister whose sermon 'Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God' became one of the most famous sermons of the 18th century. In this lesson, we'll look at Edwards' sermon and analyze it for Puritan beliefs and style.

Benjamin Franklin: Quotes and Autobiography

6. Benjamin Franklin: Quotes and Autobiography

Everyone knows Benjamin Franklin flew a kite in a storm and that he signed the Declaration of Independence. But how much do you know about his writing? In this lesson, we'll look at two of his most famous works and how they influenced American literature.

Thomas Paine: Common Sense and The Crisis

7. Thomas Paine: Common Sense and The Crisis

Thomas Paine was an influential writer during the American Revolution. In this lesson, we'll explore the content and style of two of his most famous pamphlets and how they helped shape American history.

Francis Bacon: History, Ideas and Legacy

8. Francis Bacon: History, Ideas and Legacy

This lesson examines the contributions of Sir Francis Bacon to science. We take a long hard look at the scientific method, with special emphasis on experimental science. Then we briefly examine how Bacon sold science to the world.

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