The Enlightenment Essay

Submitted By hottmonkey41
Words: 1031
Pages: 5

How did the Enlightenment, the Great Awakening, and the French and Indian War lead to the American Revolution? What other factors led to the demand of some colonists for independence from Great Britain?

The Enlightenment was important America because it provided the philosophical basis of the American Revolution. The Revolution was more than just a protest against English authority; as it turned out, the American Revolution provided a blueprint for the organization of a democratic society. And while imperfectly done, for it did not address the terrible problem of slavery, the American Revolution was an enlightened concept of government whose most profound documents may have been the American Declaration of Independence and United States Constitution. To feel the full impact of the Enlightenment on America one needs only to look at the first inaugural address of Thomas Jefferson, who, along with Benjamin Franklin, is considered to be the American most touched by the ideas of the Enlightenment. While the locus of the Enlightenment thinking is mostly considered to have been in Paris and Berlin, the practical application of those ideas was carried out most vividly in the American colonies.
The Great Awakening- A complete dissolving of the theocracy occurred. The establishment in Virginia and North Carolina began to fall apart. Ministers could no longer control the direction of religious life. It had been democratized and made accessible by people. One of the major results of the Great Awakening was to unify 4/5ths of Americans in a common understanding of the Christian faith and life. Americans--North and South--shared a common evangelical view of life. The Great Awakening began to break down barriers in the colonies that allowed them to have better inner-colony relations. “The evangelical movement of the 1740s played a key role in the development of democratic thought, as well as the belief of the free press and the belief that information should be shared and completely unbiased and uncontrolled. These concepts ushered in the period of the American Revolution. This contributed to create a demand for religious freedom. Although the Great Awakening represented the first time African Americans embraced Christianity in large numbers, Anglican missionaries had long sought to convert blacks, again with the printed as well as the spoken word.”
The French and Indian war was the final war in a series of wars that had occurred during the French and Indian Wars between the French and the British, which were mostly fought in the American Colonies over control of forts and river trading routes. In this final war, England decided that the battles in Europe were more deserving of their time and left the colonists to fend almost entirely for themselves against the French and the Natives. Also, at the end of all these wars, the British crown was exceedingly poor from all of the military spendings it had encountered. Its solution was to pass a series of taxes in the 1760s and 70s, such as the stamp act, which caused an enraged group of colonists to cry "no taxation without representation.” Colonists no longer needed Britain for protection. The French threat was gone leaving only native tribes to fight. The Colonists saw no need for British troops to remain after the Seven Years War
One of the factors that led to the demand of colonists independence from Great Britain was One of the main reasons is taxes. Britain had just fought the French and Indian War, and because of it was in debt. England decided that since it was fought on American soil, then it was fair to make the colonists pay for it. Except, the colonists felt like they didn't have a say in the British Parliament, so they began to rebel. They felt like England was being unfair taxing them for help (in the French and Indian War) that they never even asked for. Mainly, the Americans wanted England to take away unfair taxes, repeal the unfair acts (Intolerable Acts, Stamp Act,…