Friday, July 06, 2012

Be a Part of the Discussion in, "Thomas Paine: Common Sense for the Modern Era" edited by Ronald F. King and Elsie Begler

            We all know what it is, and we all think we use it flawlessly, but, do we really? Defined as, “sound and prudent judgment based on a simple perception of the situation,” ‘common sense’ is not only a term used universally, but it is also the title of Thomas Paine’s revolutionary pamphlet. This founding father was respected internationally and his philosophies are still highly respected. Paine’s political advances pushed for America’s independence from Britain. Through his powerful prose he was able to sway the minds of a growing nation. San Diego State University held a conference in 2005 that explored the contributions of Paine’s, ‘Common Sense.’ The lively discussion was far from the traditional history lecture as the educated speakers made new connections between Paine’s eighteenth-century ideas and modern day issues. These discussions found in, “Thomas Paine: Common Sense for the Modern Era” edited by, Ronald F. King and Elsie Begler, give life to Paine’s theories in a whole new way. With these thought-provoking discussions we can get one step closer to having some of that much-needed ‘common sense.’

SDSU’s conference is not the only time in which Paine’s philosophies have been used to analyze modern day politics. Check out this video of Bob Basso as he takes on Paine’s image and ideas in order to bring some of Paine's teachings back to the nation.