American Visions, American Stories: The Puritan World View and Early American

Author Topic: American Visions, American Stories: The Puritan World View and Early American  (Read 2571 times)

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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Social Covenant   


Idea of covenant organizes Puritan civic life:
King/Queen of England not in charge of church governance
Individual church congregations enter into own covenants with each other and govern themselves
Church and government of colonies also enter into covenants—theocracy
Extremely threatening to English monarchy
Conformity in all aspects of life: “Here’s our contract with God and each other.”
Quashes dissent: break covenant & you’re out of church, land, community

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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The Appeal; or, What’s In It For Me?

Covenant system very delicately balanced—inherent drama
Those not Puritan definitely not elected
Be part of exceptional group
Belief world about to end—Puritans to “make way” for return of Christ
Emotional charge – extremely charismatic religion
Social pressures – economic pressures
Not just about religion – also all about politics and social order
Sense of order and community in totally disordered / fractured world

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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Of Pilgrims and Puritans: What’s the difference?

All Pilgrims are Puritans, but not all Puritans are Pilgrims

Most Puritans are happy to keep the Church of England–simply want to PURIFY it by working from within (Winthrop, Bradstreet, Boston/Massachusetts Bay Co., est. 1630)

Pilgrims are radical Puritans—Church of England has to go—beyond salvation (Bradford, Plymouth Plantation, est. 1620)

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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Of Pilgrims and Puritans, 2

“Separatists” – Separate from Church of England and therefore from England itself

Social outcasts – radical, subversive, persecuted

Of Mayflower and First Thanksgiving fame (a myth)

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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William Bradford, 1590-1657

Separatist Puritans (Pilgrims) to Plymouth, 1620

Group most persecuted in England

Most radical, extreme views

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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Figures and typology

Puritan literature explicates prophecies of Biblical Old Testament as foreshadowing of events and people—first in the New Testament, then in contemporary life (by 1640s)
Biblical forecasts of current events
E.g.: Atlantic journey of Puritans is “antitype” of Exodus of Israelites, the “chosen people” (the “type”).     

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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Figures and typology: Story of American Exceptionalism
Individuals are “chosen”—the elect
But COMMUNITY as whole is “people chosen of God” as well
New Israelites (Puritans) sent on errand into the wilderness to establish the new Jerusalem in anticipation of Christ’s return

Offline Tamanna Islam

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hmmm...

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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 ???

Offline Ferdousi Begum

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hmmm...

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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please let me know both the connotation and denotation of your "hmmm..." ...

Offline Tamanna Islam

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Why don't you focus more on American dream?
I also wish to see something on Hemingway from you.
Regards
Tamanna

Offline Gopa B. Caesar

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thanks a lot for your suggestions api.
i'll try to post some as soon as i'll manage to write some. :)

Offline Antara11

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Great study. Carry on!!!!!!!

Antara Basak
Lecturer
Dept. of English
Antara Basak
Senior Lecturer
Dept. of English