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Pre-Revolutionary Voices

American Lit Unit 1, Part 2
by

Alee Cotton

on 29 June 2011

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Transcript of Pre-Revolutionary Voices

American Literature - 1700s An Expanding World and Universe Changes with the 18th century economic, social, philosophical, and scientific changes The Enlightenment Intellectuals now believed in the power of the human mind to comprehend the universe as never before Isaac Newton John Locke
Human sympathy rather than supernatural grace is the basis for a moral life
Encouraged belief in controlling one's own spiritual destiny Enlightenment Ideals
Desire to resolve conflicts between new discoveries and Christian belief
Emphasis on moral choices
Deism
Very secular, less emphasis on religion
You can live a good life and embrace materials
Independence of politics and religion (minister didn't have all the answers)
Trend toward more liberal thinking Reason and Religion: The Great Awakening
Conservative reaction to new discoveries
Emotion now seen as a component of human experience
Jonathan Edwards Imperial Politics Declaration of Independence
Colonists transformed into revolutionaries
Literature impacted this movement significantly Emphasis on political literature Pursuing Happiness
model of a Christian community
focus on progress, opportunity Thomas Paine
Common Sense Mathematician and Philosopher Principia Methematica - Universe is rational Great shift from Puritan thinking If you can understand the universe, God isn't needed in the same way (beginning of a deistic God) Political Changes Economic changes Colonists began to focus on democratic principles Religion was only one aspect of life's purpose Population Trade Colonies as a place of promise
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