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Puritan Spirits in the Abolitionist Imagination - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Puritan Spirits in the Abolitionist Imagination

Kenyon Gradert


The Puritans of popular memory are dour figures, characterized by humorless toil at best and witch trials at worst. Calling someone a Puritan is an insult reserved for prudes, prigs, or oppressors. Our American abolitionist forebears, however, would be shocked to hear this. In the decades before the Civil War, abolitionists fervently embraced the idea that Puritans were in fact pioneers of revolutionary dissent, and invoked their name and ideas as part of their anti-slavery crusade. Puritan Spirits in the Abolitionist Imagination reveals how the leaders of the nineteenth-century abolitionist m ... More

Keywords: puritanism, abolitionism, slavery, religion, pleasure, literature, memory

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9780226694023
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2020 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226694160.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Kenyon Gradert, author
Auburn University