75 terms

Religion, Romanticism, and Reform

Chapter 13

Terms in this set (...)

Major Themes
-Idea that society could be perfected
-Emphasis on emotions in addition to (and sometimes instead of) rationalism
-Cross-over between religion, romanticism, and reform
Rational Religion
-after revolution -> many americans were more interested in religious salvation than political engagement
-christian activists assumed that US had a god mandated mission to provide the world w/ a shining example of republican virtue -> combination of widespread religious energy and fervent social idealism brought major reforms and advances in human rights during the 1st half of the 19th century, also brought disappointments -> cynicism and alienation
-Stemmed from the Enlightenment
-Questioned the authority of the church and the divinity of Christ
-Clock-maker analogy
-Included many Revolutionary leaders (Jefferson and Franklin)
-enlightenment rationalism: stressed humankind, inherent goodness rather than its depravity and encouraged a belief in social progress and the promise of individual perfectibility
-increased after american revolution and especially during french revolution
-believed people might grasp the natural laws governing the universe
-rejected the belief that every statement in bible was literally true
-skeptical of miracles
-defended free speech and opposed religious coercion of all sorts
-Did not believe in the Trinity
-God is loving and benevolent
-Jesus a good person, but not divine
-John Adams among its members
-embraced by many well education new englanders
-belief that emphasizes oneness
-inherent goodness of humankind
-primacy of reason and conscience over religious creeds and organized churches
-people aren't inherently depraved
-people are capable of doing tremendous good and all were eligible for salvation
-boston: center of movement
-man too good to be damned
-Salvation not just for a predestined few, but for all
-Started in the United States by British clergyman John Murray
-anti calvinist movement
-attracted a much larger social group (working class)
-god is too merciful to condemn any one to eternal punishment
-god too good to damn man
Second Great Awakening
-About 1795-1835
-Emerged in part from concerns over secularism in society
-Methodists, Baptists, and Presbyterians
-Repent, accept Christ, be saved
-Two branches: (1) elite new England colleges (new York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois) and (2) backcountry (Tennessee and Kentucky), spread across rural america
-both branches shared a simple message: salvation is available not just to a select few but to anyone who repents and embraces christ
-experienced dramatic growth
-1784: met in baltimore and announced they were abandoning anglicanism and forming a distinct new domination
-founder: John Wesley (english anglican priest)
-abandoned predestination of calvinism
-discarded the anglican prayer book and loved singing hymns
-welcomed the working poor and oppressed
-emphasized possibility of christian perfection in their lives
-shared w/ baptists belief that everyone could gain salvation by an act of free will
-established a much more centralized church structure
-developed most effective evangelical method of all: the traveling minister on horseback
-"circuit rider" system began w/ Francis Asbury -> established a mobile evangelism perfectly suited to the frontier environment and new democratic age
-Peter Cartwright emerged as the most successful circuit rider after Asbury -> message: salvation is free for all to embrace
-affected the most after american revolution
-suffered the stigma of being aligned w/ the church of England and lost its status as the official religion in most states
-virginia Anglicans renamed themselves episcopalians
-replaced by baptists and methodists
Timothy Dwight
-early revivalist leader
-became president of Yale college (1795)
-resolved to purify campus
-grandson of Jonathan Edwards
-helped launch a series of revivals that captivated Yale students and spread to all of new England
Preachers making use of developing transportation network to travel
-Charles Finney and Lyman Beecher
Seen particularly among Baptists and Methodists
Rural camp meetings
Attractive to both women and African Americans
African americans - especially attracted to new methodist and baptist churches, actively reunited blacks
Frontier Revivals
-backwoods circuit riding preacher and the camp meetings helped keep fires of revivalism burning in the backwoods
-unifying events -> bridged many social, economic, political, and racial divisions (especially women)
-entrenched among Scots-Irish from Pennsylvania and Georgia
-presbyterians and congregationalists agreed on theology and differed mainly on form of church govt. they adopted
-formed unified congregations and called minister from either church
-new englanders became presbyterians
-often unschooled
-embraced a simplicity of doctrine and organization that appealed especially to rural people
-theology grounded in the infallibility of the bible and the recognition of innate human depravity
-replaced calvinist motion of predestination and selective salvation w/ the concepts of free will and universal redemption while highlighting the ritual of adult baptism
-stressed the equality of all before god regardless of wealth, social standing, or education
Camp Meetings
-typically held in late summer or fall
-people came from far and wide camping in wagons, tents, or crude shacks
-african americans (enslaved or free) could set up adjacent camp revivals
-largest camp meetings tended to be ecumenical affairs w/ baptist, methodist, and presbyterian ministers working as a team
-women: played predominant role at camp meetings, spiritual energy
-provided opportunities for women to participate as equals and exercise leadership rules outside the house -> bolstered women's self confidence and expanded their horizons beyond the domestic sphere -> inspired them to work on social reform efforts (expanding education opportunities for women and the right to vote)
Burned Over District
-Refers to the large number of revivals and conversions in Upstate New York
-Mass conversions
-Charles Grandison Finney
Charles Grandison Finney
-most successful evangelist in new York
-preached and generated 100,000 conversions
-insisted that the only thing preventing conversion was the individual -> the sinner must simply choose salvation by embracing the promise of jesus
-wanted to democratize the process of salvation
-transformed revivals into well organized popular spectacles: collective conversion experiences in which spectacular public events displaced the private workshop experience
-his gospel combined faith and god works: revival -> efforts at social reform
-by embracing christ, a convert could be free of sin, but christians also had obligation to improve larger society
-helped found array of groups designed to reform: alcoholism, prostitution, profanity, war, and slavery
-1835: accepted professorship of theology at Oberlin college and later served as president of it
Lyman Beecher
-one of towering champions of revivalism
-stressed that 2nd great awakening wasn't focused simply on promotion individual conversions, it also intended to reform human society
Oberlin College
-founded by new englanders
-radiated a spirit of reform predicted on faith
-1st college in US to admit women and blacks
-hotbed of anti slavery agitation
The Second Coming of Christ will bring about this millennium; necessitates Christ's intervention to start
Christ will come after millennium of peace and prosperity; human progress will be what brings about this millennium and Christ's coming
Restoration Movement
AKA Stone-Campbell Movement
-Stone and Campbell unite two different movements
Restore to the church to the early Christian church - unity
Movement leads to Disciples of Christ, Churches of Christ, and Independent Christian Church
-Addison and Randolph Clark - ministers
-Founded with ties to the Disciples of Christ
-Brite Divinity School still associated with Disciples of Christ
Joseph Smith
-1820: Reported visions of God and Christ, both had forgiven his sins and told him that all religious denominations were false
1823 -reported visit from angel Moroni: son of the prophet Mormon and the last survivor of the Nephrites (descendants of ancient Hebrews who had traveled to america thousands of years before and had been visited by jesus after his crucifixion and resurrection)
-led smith to a hillside near his father's farm where he unearthed golden tablets
-Tablets with Book of Mormon - lost gospel
Smith forms religious group Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons)
-founder of Mormonism
-dismissed all christian denominations as frauds
-denied that there was a hell
-opposed slavery and promised that the second coming was imminent
-denied the legitimacy of civil govts. and the federal constitution -> no community wanted to host them
Experience persecution from their neighbors
-Relocate several times in search for permanent home
Practiced polygamy
Tensions within home Nauvoo, Illinois leads to Smith's death
Most intensely committed religious believers
Rejected the notion of original sin staining the human race in favor of creed stressing human goodness
Stood out w/ their close knit sense of community, their secret rituals, their assurance of righteousness, and refusal to abide by local laws and conventions
Moved from new York to Ohio to Missouri and then in 1839 to Commerce, Illinois on west bank of Mississippi River which they renamed Nauvoo -> developed well
Smith became community's leading planner, entrepreneur and political czar: owned the hotel and general store, served as mayor and commander of the city's militia (the Nauvoo Legion) and the trustee of the church
Smith's lust for power increased -> began excommunicating dissidents and in 1844 announced his intention to become US president, excited outrage by practicing polygamy -> 1844: mormon dissidents including Smith's 1st wife emma denounced his polygamy -> attack on Nauvoo by non mormons
Smith ordered Mormons to destroy an opposition newspaper -> he and his brother Hyrum were arrested and charged w/ treason
June 27, 1844: anti mormon lynch mob of masked men stormed the jail and killed Joseph and his brother
Brigham Young and Relocation to Utah
-Brigham Young: assumes Smith's leadership role, strong minded, intelligent, and authoritarian, promised Illinois officials that mormons would leave the state
Mormons migrate to Great Salt Lake in Utah
-Under Mexican control at the time
-1848: Mexico defeated by US armies -> treaty of Guadalupe hidalgo -> ceded to US California, Nevada, Utah, Texas and parts of Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and Wyoming
-Becomes Utah Territory under U.S. government in 1850
-stirrings of spirit and heat rather than dry logic of reason
-romantics emphasized on individualism, idealizing the virtues of common people
-Immanuel Kant (German Philosopher) - gave transatlantic movement a summary definition in his book -> emphasized the limits of science and reasoning in explaining the universe, believed people had innate conceptions of conscience and beauty and religious impulses too strong to be illusions -> people were justified in having faith
-Belief that those things that could not be proven by science were justified by faith and that everyone held within them a spark of divinity
Movement focused on transcending above rationality and its limitations
-Intellectual, religious, artistic
Most intense proponents - transcendentalists of new England
Another form of religious awakening
Sought to embody the truest piety - a pure form of personal spirituality
Goal - foster in harmony w/ the perfectionism of the divine and of divinity: creation, nature
Wanted to awaken a new outlook for a new democratic age
1836: Transcendental Club (informal discussion group) began to meet in Boston and near concord, Massachusetts to discuss philosophy, literature, and religion
Some focused on individual freedom while others stressed collective efforts to reform society -> united by their differences
Ralph Waldo Emerson
-Pillar of the transcendental movement
-Left Unitarian church and dismissed all religious denominations
-Emphasized the sacredness of nature and celebrated the virtues of optimism, self reliance, and individualism (unlimited potential)
-settled in concord to take up life of an essayist, poet, and popular speaker on the lecture circuit
Henry David Thoreau
July 4, 1845: went to woods to live in one room cabin he built on Emerson's land near Walden Pond
-wanted to free himself from complexities and hypocrisies of life and devote his time to observation, reflection, and writing -> did not lead hermit's life
-Wanted the clarity and solace of nature
-Wrote book on experiences
Wrote "Civil Disobedience" (1849): influenced passive resistance movements of Mahatma Gandhi in India and Martin Luther King Jr. in the american south
Could do many things well
Revered nature as a living bible
Showed no interest in scramble for wealth
Emerson's young friend and concord neighbor
Mexican War erupted while he was at Walden Pond and he concluded that it was an unjust war to advance the cause of slavery -> refused to pay his poll tax as an anti war gesture -> put in jail for one night (aunt paid tax)
Taught powerful lesson: people must follow their conscience
Portrayed movement as a profound expression of moral idealism
Critics: dismissed it as outrageous expression of egotism
Hudson River School
-Artistic movement (named later) for school of landscape artists
-Originated with the Romantic movement
-Early leaders Thomas Doughty, Asher Durand, and Thomas Cole
Romantic Literature and Poetry
-Emergence of a canon of American literature
-Use of nature
-Emphasis on individualism
-Value of imagination/emotions
-Includes Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Herman Melville, Margaret Fuller, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Edgar Allen Poe
Nathaniel Hawthorne
-supreme writer of new England group
-presented powerful moral allegories
-central theme examined sin and its consequences: pride and selfishness, secret guilt, and the impossibility of rooting sin out of the human soul
Emily Dickinson
-most strikingly original and elusive of the new England poets
-only a few of her almost 1800 poems were published (anonymously) before her death
-cherished her individualism
-often abstract themes were elemental: life, death, fear, loneliness, nature, and above all, god
Edgar Allen Poe
-master of gothic horror and inventor of the detective story
-born in boston but reared in Virginia
-delighted in evoking terror and nursing suspense
-judged prose by its ability to produce emotional tension -> considered fear to be most powerful emotion -> focused efforts on making the grotesque and supernatural seem real
Herman Melville
-new Yorker who went to sea as a youth -> arrived in Marquesas Island in south seas and jumped ship w/ a companion -> spent weeks w/ friendly tribe in valley of the Typees -> signed on w/ Australian whaler -> joined mutiny in Tahiti and returned home as seaman aboard a US navy frigate -> wrote about his adventures
-1851: wrote Moby Dick -> 2 audiences: (1) ripping good yarn of adventure on the high seas; (2) explores profound philosophical and psychological realms
-sought to understand the unfathomable depths and darkness of human complexity
Walt Whitman
-vibrant personality who disdained inherited conventions and artistic traditions
-city fascinated him and gorged himself on the urban spectacle: shipyards, crowds, factories, shop windows
-frank sexuality and homoerotic overtones
-rejected idea that women's proper sphere is in a supportive and dependent role
-flowering of american literature coincided w/ massive expansion in newspaper readership
-technology sparked reading revolution -> 1847: Richard Hoe (new York) invented rotary press: printed 20,000 sheets per hour
-forged a network of communications across the expanding republic
-content expanded beyond political news and commentary to include society gossip, sports, and reports of crimes and accidents
-proliferation of newspapers was largely a northern and western phenomenon
-literacy rates in south lagged behind
-most children were taught to read in church or in private "dame" schools by formal tutors or by their families
-1830: no state had a public school system in the modern sense
Early Public Schools
-1830s: demand for public schools peaked -> workers wanted free schools to give their children an equal chance to purse the American dream
-argued education would improve manners and reduce crime and poverty
-funds were insufficient for buildings, books, and equipment
-teachers poorly paid and poorly prepared
-most students going beyond elementary attended private academies often subsidized by the church and public funds
-1821: Boston English High School opened as nation's 1st free public secondary school (mainly students not going to college)
Horace Mann
-led early drive for statewide school system
-trained as a lawyer he sponsored creation of a state board of education -> served as its leader
-sponsored many reforms in Massachusetts including 1st state supported "normal school" for training of teachers, a state association of teachers, and a minimum school year of 6 months
-promoted public school system as way to achieve social stability and equal opportunity
Law of 1827
Massachusetts required a high school in every town of 500 in towns of 4000+ and offer college preparatory courses
Higher Education
-coexistence of state and religious colleges led to conflicts over funding and curriculum
-beset by need for funds as colleges usually were
-denominational schools often competed w/ tax supported schools
-many denominations colleges emphasized theology at the expense of science and the humanities
-technical education grew slowly
-more young men learned technical skills through practical experience w/ railroad and canal companies
-most people viewed higher education as unsuited to a women's destiny in life
-some argued it would produce betters wives and better mothers
-few promoted genuine education equality
-women's seminaries differed from courses in men's schools -> gave more attention to social amenities (music and art)
-coeducation didn't mean equality
-Addressing issues that society has always dealt with (and still does, and most likely always will)
-Driven by their belief in perfectibility
-Women's role -> rise up urban middle class offered affluent women greater time to devote to societal concerns
-Religious sentiment
Three General Reform Ideologies
-Fix the problems in society
-Separate the problem from society and fix it
-Separate from society and its problems
Asylums and Penitentiaries
-Separate "problems" from society in order to cure them, but also to protect society
-Orphan asylums
-Insane asylums
-romantic impulse often included the liberal belief that people are innately good and capable of improvement
-optimistic view of human nature brought about major changes in the treatment of prisoners, the disabled, and dependent children
-dedicated to treatment and care of social ills
Orphan Asylums
-Increase in number during 1800s
-Help children and prevent problems in society
-Orphanages founded around religious beliefs, ethnic origins, and occasionally gender
-Often took in children with living parents
Prison Reform
-Increasing focus on rehabilitation and not just punishment
Auburn system
-Isolated except for meals and work time
Philadelphia system
-Complete isolation
Separate juveniles from adults
-House of Refuge in New York first juvenile reform center - 1824
Insane Asylums
Mentally ill previously kept in jails or almshouses
-Eastern State Hospital, first hospital solely for mentally ill, created in Virginia 1770
Dorothea Lynde Dix instrumental in changing the care of mentally ill
Dorothea Lynde Dix
-most important figure in heightening the public's awareness of the plight of the mentally ill
-found a roomful of insane people completely neglected -> commenced a 2 year investigation of jails and almshouses in Massachusetts
-group of Boston ministers organized American Society for the Promotion of Temperance, 1826: organized lectures, press campaigns, an essay contest, and the formation of local and state societies
American Temperance Union, 1833
-Formed out of a convention convened by American Temperance Society at a national convention in Philadelphia
1836 - spring convention called for abstinence from all alcoholic beverages -> caused moderates to abstain from movement
Moderation vs. total abstinence
Most widespread of all the reform movements
Religious concern that soldiers of the cross should lead blameless lives
Benjamin Rush (physician) noted the bad effects of distilled beverages on body and mind
Humanitarians emphasized relationship between drinking and poverty
Much of propaganda focused on sufferings of innocent mothers and children abused by husbands and fathers
Women's Movement
First Wave Feminism
-Women's Rights Convention at Seneca Falls in 1848
Fighting for equality in education, homes, churches, voting rights, etc.
Increase of "separate spheres"
Divisions within movement ->1840: organized movement for women's rights emerged when anti slavery movement split over the question of women's right to participate
Shifts after the Civil War
Some argued that home became a trap for women, a suffering prison that hindered their individual fulfillment: others noted that the middle class home gave women a sphere of independence in which they might exercise a degree of initiation and leadership
Cult of Domesticity: idealized women's moral role in civilizing husband and family
1848: 2 prominent moral reformers and advocates of women's rights: Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Catherine Beecher
-Educational reformer, founder of women's schools in Connecticut and Ohio
Believed in separate spheres
-Woman's place in the home
A Treatise on Domestic Economy, 1841
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
-Introduced Declaration of Sentiments at Seneca Falls
-Women's Bible
Lucretia Coffin Mott
-Founded Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society, 1833
-Discourse on Woman, 1850
-argued for equal economic opportunities and voting rights
Susan B. Anthony
-Raised in Quaker household
-Active in temperance, abolition, and women's rights movement
-Founder of Woman's New York State Temperance Society
-Crucial in fight for woman's suffrage
Women's Rights Convention at Seneca Falls
-Considered the beginning of First Wave Feminism
-Declaration of Sentiments: proclaimed self evident truth that "all men and women are created equal"
-Attended by both men and women
-1/3 of the 1,000 delegates sign the Declaration of Sentiments
-July 19, 1848
Utopian Societies
-Over 100 appear between 1800 and 1900
Visions for perfection resulted in the formation of unique communities
-Separate from larger society to have ideal society
Communal living
Reactions against aspects of society
-Mother Ann Lee
-Emphasis on Holy Ghost
-Practiced celibacy
-Communal property
-Based on external growth
-United Society of Believers in Christ
-ritual dance
-Shaker Doctrine: held god to be a dual personality: in christ the masculine side was manifested; in Mother Ann the feminine element
-temporary refuge
-accepted blacks
-peak" 1820-1860
Oneida Community
-John Humphrey Noyes
-New York
-Communal living
"Complex marriage": every man in community was married to every woman and vice versa
-Very controversial
-arrested for practicing his "free law" theology
Manufactured silverware
New Harmony, Indiana
-Robert Owen: British capitalist who worried about degrading social effects of the factory system
-Secular foundations
-Cooperative community
-Failed within a few years
-Owen turned management of colony to a town meeting of all residents and a council of town officers -> fell into discord b/c every idealist wanted his plan put into practice
-1828: Owen dissolved project
-Followers: Owenites
Brook Farm
-Combine intellectualism with work
-Community school
-Expired with fire in 1846
-most celebrated of all utopian communities b/c it grew out of Transcendental Movement
-George Ripley: unitarian Minister and transcendentalist
-US's 1st secular utopian community
-survived mainly b/c of excellent community school
-Movement to abolish slavery
-Moves from acceptance of gradual manumission to demand for immediate end to slavery as 19th century progresses
-Movement that included men and women and was multi-ethnic
-Evangelical Christian and mostly Whigs
-Divisions within the movement
-Return freed slaves to Africa
American Colonization Society, founded 1817
-Transport slaves to what becomes Liberia
American Colonization Society
-1817: first organized emancipation movement
-proposed to return freed slaves to Africa
-some supported the movement b/c of their opposition to slavery
-others saw it as a way to bolster slavery by getting rid of potentially troublesome free blacks
-leaders of free black community denounced movement from the start
-1821: agents of society acquired from local chieftains in west Africa a parcel of land that became the nucleus of a new nation
-1822: 1st freed slaves were transported there and 25 years later the society relinquished control to the Free and Independent Republic of Liberia
Frederick Douglass
-Born a slave
-Taught to read and write
-Runs away, feared capture after publishing his Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass (1845) -> extended lecture tour of the British Isles -> later buys freedom
-Powerful speaker
-Supported women's rights as well
-started abolitionist newspaper for blacks (The North Star)
Sojourner Truth
Born a slave in New York
-Later freed
Changed her name to Sojourner Truth
Abolitionist and women's rights
-Spoke from experience of being black and a woman
The Narrative of Sojourner Truth
William Lloyd Garrison
-1831: launched a new anti slavery newspaper, The Liberator, in Boston
-Called for immediate end to slavery
-Believed society needed to be reshaped as a whole
-embraced every important reform movement of the day
-championed equal social and legal rights for african americans
-broke w/ organized church and refused to vote
American Anti Slavery Movement
-Founded by William Lloyd Garrison, Arthur Tappan, Lewis Tappan, and others
-Called for immediate abolition of slavery and equal rights for African Americans
Anti-slavery propaganda
-Upset both southerners and northerners
Sarah and Angelina Grimke
-Born to slaveholding family in Charleston
-Moved North, became Quakers
-Actively involved in the abolition and women's rights movement
Divisions Within the Movement
-Garrison and followers a little too radical for others
Participation of women
-Grimké sisters speaking in front of groups of women AND men
-Leads to the formation of American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society when Anti-Slavery Society allows full participation of women
Group wanting to take political action forms Liberty party
American and Foreign Anti Slavery Society
-anti feminism
-Tappan brothers
Liberty Party
-formed in effort to elect president who would abolish slavery
-nominee: James Gillepsie Birney -> former slaveholder turned abolitionist
Underground Railroad
-Network of stops and secret paths to help slaves escaping to Canada
-So named because of its secrecy and the terminology used to direct slaves
-Leads southerners to believe northerners will not let slavery peacefully continue
-Harriet Tubman: risked everything to venture back to the south 19 times and helped 300 slaves escape
Defense of Slavery
-Evangelical Christian churches in the south which had widely condemned slavery at one time gradually turned pro slavery
-1844-1845: disputes over slavery split 2 great denominations along sectional lines and led to formation of Southern Baptist Convention and Methodist Episcopal Church
-biblical defenses of slavery
"Free Soilers"
militant reformers who were determined to prevent slavery from expanding