American Ideas

  • Jun 15, 1215

    Magna Carta

    Magna Carta
    *Manga Carta is an English charter.
    *The charter first passed into law in 1225.
    *Magna Carta was the first document forced onto an English King by a group of his subjects, the feudal barons.
  • Mayflower Compact

    Mayflower Compact
    *The Mayflower Compact was the first document of the Plymouth colony.
    * It was written by the people of the colony.
    * Almost half of the colonists were part of a separatist group seeking the freedom to practice Christianity.
  • Two Treaties of Government

    Two Treaties of Government
    *Written by John Locke.
    *The Latter is an Essay concerning The True Original, Extent, and End of Civil-Government") is a work of political philosophy published anonymously in 1689 by John Locke.
  • English Bill of Rights

    English Bill of Rights
    *The Bill of Rights is an Act of the Parliament of England.
    *William and Mary signed the English Bill of Rights, but Parliamentary members wrote it (there is no way to know which ones in particular)
    *Along with the Act of Settlement, the Bill of Rights is still in effect.
    *In the United Kingdom, the Bill of Rights is further accompanied by the Magna Carta, Habeas Corpus Act 1679 and Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949.
  • State of Nature

    *State of nature is a term in political philosophy.
    *The term "state of nature" appears in the writings of Thomas Aquinas.
    *John Locke considers the state of nature in his Second Treatise on Civil Government written around the time of the Exclusion Crisis in England during the 1680s.
  • Spirit of Laws

    Spirit of Laws
    *The Spirit of the Laws is a treatise on political theory.
    *First published anonymously by Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu in 1748 with the help of Claudine Guérin de Tencin.
    Montesquieu spent nearly twenty years researching and writing The Spirit of the Laws.
    * Also called De l'esprit des lois.
  • Social Conract

    Social Conract
    *John Locke developed the Social Contart theory
    *The social contract is an intellectual device intended to explain the appropriate relationship between individuals and their governments.
    *Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau are the most famous social contract thinkers.
    *Publication date--1762.
  • Continental Congress

    Continental Congress
    *The Continental Congress was a convention of delegates called together from the Thirteen Colonies.
    *The Congress met from 1774 to 1789 in three incarnations.
  • Common sense

    Common sense
    *Common Sense was written by Thomas Paine.
    *Common Sense is a revolutionary war phamplet.
    * It was first published anonymously on January 10, 1776, during the American Revolution.
    *Common Sense, signed "Written by an Englishman", became an immediate success.
  • Articles of Confederation

    Articles of Confederation
    *The Articles of Confederation was the first written constitution.
    * It was drafted in 1776-77 and became the working constitution, although it was not formally ratified until 1781.
    * Nationalists complained that it was too weak, and after extensive debate it was replaced by the current Constitution in 1789.
  • Natural Rights

    Natural Rights
    hNatural and legal rights are two types of rights.
    *Natural rights, also called inalienable rights, are considered to be self-evident and universal.
    *Legal rights, such as constitutional rights, common law rights, and statutory rights, are bestowed under a particular political and legal system.
  • Enlightenment

    • The Enlightment was written by Immanuel Kant. *The Age of Enlightenment (or simply the Enlightenment or Age of Reason) was an elite cultural movement of intellectuals in 18th century. *Originating about 1650–1700, it was sparked by philosophers Baruch Spinoza, John Locke, and Pierre Bayle, and by mathematician Isaac Newton. *The Enlightenment flourished until about 1790–1800.