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Locke, ‘the Father of Modernity’?

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image of Philosophia Reformata

Locke was the first to develop with profundity and defend the thesis that we are all responsible for our believings, and that to do one’s duty with respect to one’s believings one must, at appropriate junctures and in appropriate ways, listen to the voice of Reason. Reason must be one’s guide. Locke had forebears and cohorts in this line of thought; I want not only to concede but to insist on this. Nonetheless, Locke was the great genius behind our modern ways of thinking of rationality and responsibility in beliefs. And Locke’s vision became classic: for many, compelling; by some, contested; by no one, ignored. Locke, on this issue, is the father of modernity. (xiv)


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