Until recently, and especially in the United States, Western Civilization has been dominated by Enlightenment thought, tempered by the criticisms of the nineteenth century. One of the current questions is whether this strand of thought is adequate to cope with the problems of the age of anxiety. Those who believe that the Enlightenment ideas are still basically sound suggest the giving up of transcendent or long-term goals in favor of more immediate aims. Equality and freedom are, in such a context better when they apply to more people than when they apply to fewer. According to this way of thinking, one interpretation of justice would be better than another if it could be realized by more people. That type of security is better which more people can enjoy. Thus the Enlightenment concepts are dealt with less qualitatively than quantitatively. [excerpt]
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Bloom, Robert L. et al. "4. The Enlightenment Again Under Attack. Pt. XIX: An Analysis of the Contemporary World's Search for Meaning." Ideas and Institutions of Western Man (Gettysburg College, 1958), 15-18.