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Religion and American PoliticsFrom the Colonial Period to the Present$
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Mark A. Noll and Luke E. Harlow

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195317145

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195317145.001.0001

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Religion and Ideological Change in the American Revolution

Religion and Ideological Change in the American Revolution

Chapter:
(p.47) 2 Religion and Ideological Change in the American Revolution
Source:
Religion and American Politics
Author(s):

Ruth H. Bloch

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195317145.003.0003

This chapter looks at important developments in the founding period, focusing on the American Revolution and immediately thereafter. It shows how important religious conceptions were, especially in New England, to the inspiration of the American Revolution and also how religious sensibilities evolved as the ideological excitement of the war gave way to the urgent necessities of nation building. The discussion addresses a basic historical question about religion and American politics: How did religious ideas contribute to the development of political ideology? Defining the topic this way necessarily brackets many other interesting questions about the role of religion in the American Revolution that fall more directly into the realms of social and political history—questions involving institutional structures and laws, the extent of clerical and lay activism, regional and denominational comparisons, and so on.

Keywords:   New England, nation building, religious sensibilities, American Revolution, Calvinism

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