Understanding a question from an essay written during the Revolutionary War?I had to read a excerpt from an essay written during the Revolutionary War to inform the American public of what was...

Understanding a question from an essay written during the Revolutionary War?

I had to read a excerpt from an essay written during the Revolutionary War to inform the American public of what was happening on the battlefields and to encourage them to continue the war for independence.

I have to give one example from the excerpt that shows the speaker acknowledged the influence of Puritan beliefs on his audience. And then Another example that shows the speaker was influenced by the Age of Reason (the Enlightenment). And my reason for picking it.

 

Could someone explain to me what they are asking me to write? For some reason I'm not understanding the question being asked. I've read the notes/book and nothing is helping me.

Thank you :)

-Dani

Asked on by danidani

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

This is one where you really ought to ask your teacher because he/she is the one who has actually made up the question and knows exactly what is wanted.

It sounds to me like you are being asked to look at the essay and find evidence of two rather different influences on American thought -- Puritanism and the Enlightenment.

I think your teacher is asking you first to look for evidence that shows Puritan ideas have affected this essay.  You might want to look for things like an emphasis on following what God wants.  The Puritans believed (among other things) that nations should act in ways that God wanted.  Does the writer ever say anything like that -- like that God wants Americans to be free?

Second, you are supposed to look for evidence of the Enlightenment.  I think the most likely thing to look for here is stuff about monarchy being bad.  A major Enlightenment idea was that people were all pretty much equal and so there was no reason for one person to rule others just because of who his ancestors were.  Is there anything like that in the essay?

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