5How did Enlightenment thinkers differ from scientists?
6They applied reason to the “human world” not just the natural world! The Human world includes government and lawNatural World: Scientists applied reason to it using the scientific method
7THE AMERICAN ENLIGHTENMENT American RevolutionAmerican independence seen as a divine sign that America and her people were destined for greatness. Military victory fanned nationalistic hopes for a great new literature. Yet except for political writing, few works of note appeared during or soon after the Revolution.1790 American Copyright LawAmerican books were harshly reviewed in England. The search for a native literature became a national obsession. The copyright law of 1790, which allowed pirating, was nationalistic in intent. Drafted by Noah Webster, the great lexicographer who later compiled an American dictionary, the law protected only the work of American authors; it was felt that English writers should look out for themselves.
8Causes of the American Revolution page 460 - 461 The 13 English ColoniesGrowing DiscontentEarly ClashesPart of British global tradeMercantilist policiesNavigation Acts: regulated colonial tradeColonists felt entitled to the rights of English citizensFrench and Indian War drained British treasury.Britain passed and enforced new tax law on the colonists“No taxation without representation.”Boston MassacreBoston Tea PartyPunitive laws passed by British to punish colonistsContinental Congress with representatives from all 13 colonies
10Let’s Party Like It’s 1699!18th century was a period of major change in American ideas and ideals…As with beliefs of Puritans, changes originated in England, but took on new spirit and meaning in colonies.What factors help explain the movement away from the severe faith of the Puritans?
11Say What?!?!Enlightenment thinkers de-emphasized “grace” and “pre-destination” in favor of “moral choice” and scientific inquiry.“virtue,” “order,” “reason,” “sympathy”How do you think religious figures felt about this changing view of the universe and how people should function within it?
12But What About Providence? Enlightenment brought a new, exciting way of seeing the universe…universe as an orderly systemWith application of reason, humanity would comprehend universe (think of Newton’s Laws).How might this change the way the common man felt about religion and God?Not necessarily a rejection…
13“Benjamin Franklin Drawing Down Electricity from the Sky” (Benjamin West, ca. 1816)
14“I Just Believe in Science, Okay!” “Know then thyself, presume not God to scan/The proper study of mankind is man.” (Alexander Pope)What does that mean?
16DeismMany of these thinkers (including Jefferson and Franklin) called themselves “Deists.”Man can deduce the existence of a supreme being from the fact that the universe exists rather than because of what the Bible says.
17What about Fire and Brimstone? Deists also thought that a harmonious universe proves the beneficence of God.How might that be?
18Take Your Buckled Shoes and Shove ‘Em! Humankind is naturally good. (What was the Puritan stance on this, again?)“Tabula Rasa”The more we understand and sympathize with each other, the richer our social and spiritual lives will be.
19And Furthermore…“Our business here on Earth is not to know all things, but those which concern our conduct.” (Locke)So are these people entirely different from the Puritans? What’s similar?Founders and Faith?“Nature’s God,” “natural rights” and “public religion”
20Neo-ClassicismWhat would be the best way for writers in this era to articulate their views?What is the function of their writing, and how does it differ from the function of Puritan writing?Are there similarities?
21Rhetoric Reason Logic Socratic Method Today this term means “the art of speaking or writing effectively (especially persuasive speaking or writing).” In Franklin’s time the term meant the same thing, but more precisely it stood for “the study of principles and rules of composition formulated by critics of ancient times.”ReasonIf one is “rational,” then he has the ability “to reason.” What does it mean to reason? Reasoning is a type of thinking used to seek a truth through cause and effect and through drawing conclusions.LogicA system of rules used to express reasoningSocratic MethodA technique in which a debater does not argue directly but instead asks a series of questions, with the result that the opponent comes either to the desired knowledge by answering the questions or to a deeper awareness of the limits of his knowledge.
22Those Greeks Had It Right… These writers saw the lit. of the ancient Greeks and Romans as the ideal to which all must aspire.Emulation of these “classical” styles and traditionsRestraint rather than emotionDignified, refined and decorous language
23Should We Be Wearing Togas? Writing, especially poetry, was seen as having a public function; it was not seen as a means for private, individual expression.A mode through which timeless truths could be imparted.“self-help”“Chicken Soup for the Rational Soul”?
24Artifacts of Different Eras Thou hast a house on high erect,Framed by that mighty Architect,With glory richly furnished,Stands permanent though this be fled.It’s purchased and paid for tooBy Him who hath enough to do.A price so vast as is unknownYet by His gift is made thine own;There’s wealth enough, I need no more,Farewell, my pelf, farewell my store.The world no longer let me love,My hope and treasure lies above.(Bradstreet, 1666)While virtue warms the generous breast,There heaven-born freedom shall reside,Nor shall the voice of war molest,Nor Europe’s all-aspiring pride –There Reason shall new laws devise,And order from confusion rise.Forsaking kings and regal state,With all their pomp and fancied bliss,The traveler [admits], convinced though late,No realm so free, so blessed as this –The east is half to slaves consigned,Where kings and priests enchain the mind.(“On the Religion of Nature,” Philip Freneau, 1785)
25Order and VirtueWe should organize our lives into an ordered sequence of reasoned and virtuous thoughts and behaviorsAim is “human perfection”How would the Puritans have felt about the concept of humans perfecting themselves for themselves and by themselves?
27The Declaration of Independence (1776) We hold these truths to be self-evident,that all men are created equal,that they are endowed by their Creatorwith certain unalienable Rights,that among these are Life, Libertyand the pursuit of Happiness.
28Declaration of Independence Drafted by Thomas JeffersonPeople had the right to “alter or abolish unjust governments.”Popular sovereigntyAll government power comes from the peopleKing had trampled the peoples’ natural rights.Colonists now had the right to rebel
29John Trumbull (1756 –1843): Declaration of Independence (1817)
30LITERARY CHARACTERISTICS emphasis on logic and rational thought, not emotions; emphasis on the social/good of the community, not the individualpresence of numerous classical allusions; use of satire; use of elevated diction; formal style that adhered to set rhyme schemes, such as couplets; two-dimensional characters or stock types that represent a class or viceInfluence of Drama-comic satiresrise of literary magazinesnovel in various forms, including picaresque, gothic, and novel of manners
31Newspapers and Books Many newspapers! Colonists began to publish their own booksAlmanacs were very popular.Published poetry, regional history, autobiographies“Captive Narrative” was a unique form of literature found in the coloniesIt told the stories of people captured by Indians
32Literature of the American Revolution: in an age of revolution, literature was of course greatly influenced by political texts non-fictional textse.g. Thomas Paine: Common Sense (1776), Thomas Jefferson: Notes on the State of Virginia (1782)
34Ben FranklinPhilosopher, scientist, publisher, legislator, and diplomatRelationship with France“First American”Colonial unityIdea of an American nation
35Michel-Guillaume Jean de Crèvecoeur (1753-1813) “farmer’s letters”: Letters From An American Farmer (1782)a series of letters,Set in rural America on the cusp of the Revolution, these pieces celebrate the independence of the yeoman farmer from the hierarchy and corruption of the Old WorldCrevecoeur illustrates the idealized version of a free society, America, a civic-humanist ideal of the freehold farm, virtuous independence and incorruptibility
36Philip Freneau (1752-832): “Father of American Poetry” Poet of American Independence: Freneau provides incentive and inspiration to the revolution by writing such poems as "The Rising Glory of America" (1771) and "Pictures of Columbus.“ (1774) (patriotic verse)first American poet to write about the Indians:“The Indian Burying Ground” (1788); “The Dying Indian” (1784)anti-slavery poetry: “To Sir Toby” (1792)
37Phillis Wheatley ‘The first African-American to print a book On Being Brought from Africa to America'Twas mercy brought me from my Pagan land,Taught my benighted soul to understandThat there's a God, that there's a Saviour too:Once I redemption neither sought nor knew.Some view our sable race with scornful eye,Their colour is a diabolic die.Remember, Christians, Negros, black as Cain,May be refin'd and join th'angelic train.(1773)‘The firstAfrican-Americanto print a book(of poetry)’