HIST – TWO PART POINT OF TOPIC
DISCUSSION PART ONE
PART ONE Original answer in college level SCHOLOARLY content. Properly cited, plagiarism free
USING, book by
Jeanette Keith, in the Introduction to her textbook The South, a Concise History, Vol. 1, provides three categories of themes that she sees at work in the History of the American South, or examine other books and/or journal articles on the topic: History of the American South.
Using reading sources on this topic, highlight and explain an example of the defense of liberty theme in complete, competent professionally well written scholarly content that stays relevant and on topic in 5-7 paragraphs.
PART TWO – Respond to (3) comments in 1-3 paragraphs of relevant RESPONSE content.Bottom of Form
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1. Discussion Response (1)
When examining the History of the American South, there are three key themes which repeatedly surface in this examination. An often overlooked theme in the development of southern history is religion. In order to understand the seriousness of religion in the American South, it is crucial to backtrack to 1517. In the years following Christopher Columbus’s voyages, a monumental religious movement known as the Protestant Reformation occurred throughout Europe. This reformation caused large masses of people to at first question some of the teachings of the Catholicism; later many Christians adamantly rejected Catholicism and became who would later be known as Protestants. In the four major European powers of this time (England, Spain, France, and Portugal), Protestantism was most prominent in England while Catholicism remained prominent the nations of Spain, France, and Portugal. It is important to note that not every single person in England was protestant because there were sizable Catholic minorities who, generally speaking, later went into hiding or fled the country when Protestants came to power. Along the same lines, there were small groups of Protestants in Spain, France, and Portugal as well, but again, generally speaking, most people in Catholic-dominated countries tended to identify with Catholicism while a sizable amount of people in England tended to publicly identify with Protestantism.
As Spanish and French colonization of the New World progressed, Jeanette Keith notes that both Catholic and Protestant groups realized the importance of establishing a presence in the New World. With Spain’s presence in the Caribbean and in the southern portions of the new continent along with France’s presence in the northern reaches (along with a presence in what is now Louisiana) of the New World, Protestants in England began to realize the seriousness of the problem of preserving and expanding the Protestant faith. Exploring and claiming new territories would prevent the expansion of opposing faiths into the claimed territories. Both Protestants and Catholics realized this importance. Although fear of the spread of opposing faiths was not the only urgency for settlement in the New World, it was definitely a contributing factor.
In the New World, the presence of Christianity presented some very serious issues with Native American tribes. William L. Ramsey notes that many of the Native American tribes in the Southeast who were contacted by English had shockingly different values from the English colonists. One of those values was the role of men and women in the family as well as in the community. In English social life, which was heavily influenced by Christianity, men were seen as the head of the household, men were typically seen as the protectors and providers, and men were the ones who typically made the influential decisions within the community. In the Native American tribes of the Southeast, women were generally viewed as the head of the household, women often were involved in community decisions, and women were often seen as the ones who kept a village in running order. As Ramsey also notes, violence against Native American women by English colonists came as a shock to the Native American community because women held such high positions of status in their communities. The idea of the roles of men and women in the household and society at large is just one example of how religion was a crucial factor in the development of the History of the American South.
1. Discussion One (2)
The South, a Concise History, Vol. 1 provides many examples as to the following: race, class, and gender. When it comes to the south race was a big issue. Many African Americans were slaves and many white Americans were slave owners. Between the two they had a rapor of being dominated by white men. Also there were class systems, not only with slaves but also with white men. Not all white men were created equal, some were labeled as trash and they had a labeling system just as the slavery system did. Men were always above women in the south. Women knew their place and spoke only when spoken to. They were beneath men, but above slaves. When you were a man, you were a master of both slaves and women.
Religion was prominent in the south. Christians were deemed holy rollers who wanted to everyone to be saved. Although they all wanted the same thing blacks and whites did not congregate together. Religion was largely important in the southern parts, and without it most southerners wouldn’t know how to act
Governments and other organizations are deemed bad when it comes to defense of liberty. Southerners see them as the ones who are trying to take their liberty away. Southerners view their rights as things that must be defended at any cost. They will go to war for their liberties, and thus white men must make it a point to everyone that they defended their liberties.
1. Defense of Liberty (3)
All three of the themes that Keith mentions in her introduction to her book The South: A Concise History, Vol. 1 – race/class/gender, religion, defense of liberty – correlate with one another in various extents. Sometimes colonists, and later, historians and sociologists, use one aspect to justify actions in operation of another. I will relate these correlations as my main focus of this discussion post, which will be mainly be about the defense of liberty – especially with its superficially hypocritical linkage to African slavery.
When mentioning the concept of liberty in what is now the Southeast, one would be likely to refer to the English colonists. That said, they, like the Spanish before them in Florida and Mexico, also hoped to become rich and to gain Christian converts. This was the premise of the Jamestown settlement in 1607, which was more of a business enterprise than a place of refuge. Thousands of indentured servants sailing to Virginia sought to plan their own economic advancement after their term of indenture ended – if they survived. Liberty for them was economic, explained below.
Other areas of the South, however, were actually areas of refuge from subjugation in their native lands. Maryland was founded by Charles Calvert, Lord Baltimore, as a place where Catholics can go to escape Anglican oppression. Other European Protestant exiles from Catholic countries settled in various Southern locales: French Huguenots to Charleston in 1685 and German Salzburgers in Ebenezer, Georgia, beginning in 1734. To them, liberty meant freedom from overbearing government on their personal beliefs.
To others, liberty meant financial solvency and the right to accumulate land and wealth. In Edmund Morgan’s article Slavery and Freedom: The American Paradox, he mentions Thomas Jefferson’s dislike for debt, as it hampers not only the yeoman farmer’s financial independence and also the future if the republic. James Oglethorpe founded Georgia in 1733 partially as a colony where debtors can live free instead of being imprisoned in England. There were more economic opportunities and more land to obtain in the New World than there were in England in the early and middle 1600s, especially after the darker “Starving Time” of Virginia in 1609-1610 and the beginnings of the tobacco business. As colonies developed. more opportunity arose for proprietors, merchants, and planters
With the rise of liberty came the paradoxical rise of indentured servitude and slavery. First, economic feasibility sided with indentured servitude, because the high death rates made the termed indenture, opposed to lifelong slavery, a better bargain. As the rate decreased, the trend reversed, and slaves were being imported in greater numbers. Codes and laws were passed to control the movements and behavior of the slaves, restricting what little freedoms they had. Defense of slavery was based on white supremacy and the inherent belief that African slaves were inferior. Bolzius disparaged them by making such statements as “if they do not work, they make mischief and do damage” (259) and intimate relations between slaves and white as “abominations” (235). One dissenting voice was that famous preacher and a figure of the Great Awakening George Whitefield, who insisted that God was passing judgment on planters’ mistreatment of slaves by disease and slave rebellions. Both Bolzius and Whitefield were Protestant leaders who differed in how slaves were to be treated, but there is no evidence in either piece that stated that they deserved even the most nominal liberties. The closer to this would be Whitefield, who says that masters regard them to be lesser beings than dogs. (13)
The conundrum of the meaning of liberty was not lost on several of the Founding Fathers, including Washington, Jefferson, and Madison: all were slave owners. Thomas Jefferson, as the author of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, can be seen as highly hypocritical by publicly proclaiming that “all men are created equal” while himself owning slaves. The main premise of the Declaration would take another war “four score and seven years” later to be completely realized.
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