Individualism In Candide

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The final scene of Voltaire’s Candide describes a purposeful and efficient group of individuals. In his essay, Kant addresses the question of “what is enlightenment” by describing a state of “self-incurred immaturity” riddled with “a lack of the resolution and the courage” to use one’s own understanding of the world (58). Candide and his friends each “[make] an effort to make use of there abilities” and each participate in a division of labor that requires specialization in a skill (Voltaire 79). Having “the courage to use [their] own understanding” to work in the garden rather than relying on an unrealistic philosophy to provide instruction on the way the world works allows Voltaire’s characters to come full circle after an adventure full of misfortunes (Kant 58).…show more content…
The combination of individualism found in the division of labor and the use of reason found in the effort to stay on task contribute to the enlightened characteristics of the passage. Specialization and everyone at the garden doing “something useful” (Voltaire 79) avoids possible “misuse of [one’s] natural gifts … the fetter of an everlasting immaturity,” which inhibits mankind from enlightenment (Kant 58). The passage describes each character embracing their freedom to use reason through unique skill sets. No longer are they unwillingly taking part in undesired occupations or
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