Becoming America: The Revolution Before 1776

Harvard University Press, 2001 M12 28 - 324 páginas
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Multinational, profit-driven, materialistic, politically self-conscious, power-hungry, religiously plural: America three hundred years ago -- and today. Here are Britain's mainland American colonies after 1680, in the process of becoming the first modern society -- a society the earliest colonists never imagined, a "new order of the ages" that anticipated the American Revolution. Jon Butler's panoramic view of the colonies in this epoch transforms our customary picture of prerevolutionary America; it reveals a strikingly "modern" character that belies the eighteenth-century quaintness fixed in history.

Stressing the middle and late decades (the hitherto "dark ages") of the American colonial experience, and emphasizing the importance of the middle and southern colonies as well as New England, Becoming America shows us transformations before 1776 among an unusually diverse assortment of peoples. Here is a polyglot population of English, Indians, Africans, Scots, Germans, Swiss, Swedes, and French; a society of small colonial cities with enormous urban complexities; an economy of prosperous farmers thrust into international market economies; peoples of immense wealth, a burgeoning middle class, and incredible poverty.

Butler depicts settlers pursuing sophisticated provincial politics that ultimately sparked revolution and a new nation; developing new patterns in production, consumption, crafts, and trades that remade commerce at home and abroad; and fashioning a society remarkably pluralistic in religion, whose tolerance nonetheless did not extend to Africans or Indians. Here was a society that turned protest into revolution and remade itself many times during the next centuries -- asociety that, for ninety years before 1776, was becoming America.

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BECOMING AMERICA: The Revolution Before 1776

Crítica de los usuarios  - Kirkus

In a thoughtful, erudite survey of colonial history, Butler (Awash in a Sea of Faith, not reviewed) traces the formation of many of America's modern social characteristics in the crucible of pre ... Leer comentario completo

LibraryThing Review

Crítica de los usuarios  - sweetFrank - LibraryThing

Butler argues that there was a remarkable social and economic transformation in the American colonies between 1680 and 1770: (1) they became ethnically and nationally diverse, (2) they developed ... Leer comentario completo


Chapter One Peoples
Chapter Two Economy
Chapter Three Politics
Chapter Four Things Material
Chapter Five Things Spiritual
Chapter Six 1776
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Jon Butler is Howard R. Lamar Emeritus Professor of American Studies, History, and Religious Studies at Yale University and Research Professor of History at the University of Minnesota. His books include the Los Angeles Times bestseller Becoming America and the prizewinning Awash in a Sea of Faith and The Huguenots in America. He is a past president of the Organization of American Historians.

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