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Was the American Revolution radical?

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ayyobreezy | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 8, 2012 at 6:40 AM via web

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Was the American Revolution radical?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted November 8, 2012 at 6:45 AM (Answer #1)

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Different scholars have different views on this issue.  One of the most respected scholars of the Revolution, Gordon Wood, argues that the rebellion was not radical in the short term but that it was radical in the long run.  In the short term, the Revolution largely left the same people or, at the very least, the same class of people in positions of power.  This was not a radical revolution like the one in France that got rid of so many of the elites.  However, Wood argues, the Revolution brought about a huge change in social relations.  It caused people to see and to treat one another as equals instead of looking at the world in hierarchical, stratified ways.  This counts, Wood says, as a radical change.

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