Catalogue


Agents of wrath, sowers of discord : authority and dissent in Puritan Massachusetts, 1630-1655 /
Timothy L. Wood.
imprint
New York : Routledge, 2006.
description
x, 196 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0415977312
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : Routledge, 2006.
isbn
0415977312
contents note
A world torn asunder -- Toward a religious identity -- Toward a civil identity -- Channels of authority -- Avenues of dissent.
catalogue key
5817724
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 181-189) and index.
A Look Inside
Summaries
Long Description
This project seeks to reconcile two conflicting schools of thought within the historiography of American Puritanism by arguing that even within the parameters of Puritan religious and political orthodoxy, dissent played a recognized and expected role in the life of early Massachusetts. Challenging previous interpretations that have depicted a monolithic Puritan establishment ruthlessly crushing all principled opposition within the colony, this book emphasizes the enormous importance the colony's leadership placed upon balancing their allegiance to the colony and its institutions with the Christian duty of reconciliation. At the same time, this study addresses more recent scholarship that dismisses the notion of a discernable "Puritan identity" entirely and contends that 17th century New England was a turbulent sea of competing ideas and enthusiasms that wholly lacked a coherent unifying ideology. Instead, this book contends that under the threat of social and intellectual chaos on the frontiers of America, there emerged a core Puritan mission that was either embraced or spurned by New England's founders, but widely understood by all. Only when opposition to that mission pushed beyond accepted boundaries and finally rose to a threatening level did the authorities of Massachusetts act decisively in defense of the colony.
Main Description
This project seeks to reconcile two conflicting schools of thought within the historiography of American Puritanism by arguing that even within the parameters of Puritan religious and political orthodoxy, dissent played a recognized and expected role in the life of early Massachusetts. Challenging previous interpretations that have depicted a monolithic Puritan establishment ruthlessly crushing all principled opposition within the colony, this book emphasizes the enormous importance the colony's leadership placed upon balancing their allegiance to the colony and its institutions with the Christian duty of reconciliation. At the same time, this study addresses more recent scholarship that dismisses the notion of a discernable "Puritan identity" entirely and contends that 17th century New England was a turbulent sea of competing ideas and enthusiasms that wholly lacked a coherent unifying ideology. Instead, this book contends that under the threat of social and intellectual chaos on the frontiers of America,there emerged a core Puritan mission that was either embraced or spurned by New England's founders, but widely understood by all. Only when opposition to that mission pushed beyond accepted boundaries and finally rose to a threatening level did the authorities of Massachusetts act decisively in defense of the colony.
Back Cover Copy
This book explores the authorities of Puritan Massachusetts balanced concern for the stability of the colony and the integrity of its Puritan mission with the hopes of reconciling dissidents back into the colonial community.
Table of Contents
A world torn asunderp. 15
Toward a religious identityp. 35
Toward a civil identityp. 61
Channels of authorityp. 87
Avenues of dissentp. 111
Reflections on authority and dissent
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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