Unit Two
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'Tis Time to Part: The Revolutionary Period

Unit Outline
Day One
Roots of Revolution: Philosophy, Religion & Politics 

Divine, pages 84-86 (on Glorious Revolution), 111-120(skip tan pages) 
Supplement:  Diderot "The Philosophe" 
Supplement:  Locke, "Of Civil Government" 

In what ways did the Enlightenment, Great Awakening and English Constitutional tradition produce conditions favorable to the birth of a revolutionary spirit? 

Edmund Andros, Dominion of New England, Glorious Revolution, Salem Witch Trials, philosophe, Great Awakening, Jonathan Edwards, George Whitefield, Old Lights, New Lights, English Constitution, Magna Carta, Parliament, House of Lords, House of Commons, monarch, Cato’s Letters, Trenchard and Gordon, royal governor, colonial assemblies, John Locke, “Of Civil Government,” social contract, natural (inalienable) rights 

  Homework Questions: 
  1. What led James II to create the Dominion of New England? How did it restructure the governments of the New England colonies? 

  2. What was the Glorious Revolution? How did New Englanders’ respond to it? 

  3. What might account for the sudden hysteria about witches in Salem during the   1690’s? (Look at 90-95 if you want to look deeper into this question.) 

  4. How was British government structured?  How did it attempt to represent each of   British society’s major class interests? 

  5. How did the reality of British politics deviate from its theoretical structure? 
  What were some of the main critiques of the British system as it was practiced? 

  6. In what sense did the American colonists see their local governments as modeled on the British system?  To what extent was that perception accurate? 

  7. Why might Cato’s Letters have been more popular in the American colonies than in Britain? 

  8. To what extent and in what ways was colonial government more democratic than British government? 
  9. According to John Locke what are the rights of man?  From what source do those rights emanate? 

  10. What factors led to the religious revival in the colonies between the 1730’s and 1760’s? Why would Americans of the time have been attracted to the preachings of   Edwards and Whitefield?  How did the Great Awakening become a widespread   movement throughout the American colonies? 

  11. What was Edwards’ and Whitefield’s critique of the current state of Protestantism in the colonies? Why might Old Lights have found the religious revival threatening? 

  12. How were the religious practices of the revivalists different from those of mainline   Protestants? 

  13. Other than its impact on colonial religion, what were some of the larger effects of   the Great Awakening on colonial society?

Day Two
 Subjects or Citizens? 

 Divine, pages 132, and 133-142 
 Supplement: Resolutions of the Stamp Act Congress 
 Handout: Subjects or Citizens 
 Write out answers to homework questions 5, 6 and 7 

   What were the main sources of disagreement concerning the power of the British government in America and the rights of Americans as British citizens? 

  Whigs, George III, parliamentary sovereignty, virtual representation, actual representation, John Locke, natural (inalienable) rights, social contract, virtue, George   Grenville, Sugar Act (Revenue Act of 1764), Proclamation of 1763, Stamp Act, Sons of   Liberty, Stamp Act Congress, vice-admiralty courts, boycott, Declaratory Act,    Townshend Revenue Acts, Quartering Act 

  Homework Questions: 
  1. What was parliamentary sovereignty? Why were the British so committed to the  notion of parliamentary sovereignty? 

  2. Why were Americans skeptical of British notions of parliamentary sovereignty? In what sense did Americans and the British disagree about the legitimacy of virtual representation in British government? 

  3. What did Trenchard and Gordon argue? How did Americans take inspiration from thinkers like Locke and Trenchard and Gordon in expressing their dissatisfaction with   British treatment of the American colonies? 

  4.  What practical impact did the imperial wars, and especially the Seven Years’ War, have on the economic and military concerns of Britain? How did Americans   respond to these developments? 

  5. What was the Stamp Act? What forms of protest did Americans use to oppose it? 
  6. What is the main complaint of the Stamp Act Congress? What does this indicate about the way they view the relationship between the colonies and Great Britain? 

  7. In what ways did the Stamp Act transform a movement of discontented elite into a mass political movement? 

  8. Why did the British repeal the Stamp Act? Why did they issue the Declaratory Act? 

  9. What were the Townshend Acts? How did Americans respond? 

10.  How do the ideas of the colonists during the 17th and 18th centuries presage contemporary debates over the role of government?

Day Three
Trouble in Massachusetts 

 Divine, pages 142-143, and 146-150 (including Lexington and Concord) 
 Supplement: First Continental Congress, Declaration and Resolves 
 Handout: Trouble in Mass 

How did the tension between Britain and her American colonies escalate into    violent confrontation? 

  Boston Massacre, loyalist, Samuel Adams, committees of correspondence, Tea Act,   Boston Tea Party, Coercive (Intolerable) Acts,  Quebec Act, First Continental Congress,   Battles of Lexington and Concord, Battle of Bunker Hill 

  Homework Questions: 
  1. What were the causes of the Boston Massacre? How might British and American accounts of the event differ? Why did Paul Revere’s engraving of the event become an instant best seller? 

  2. In what sense was Samuel Adams more revolutionary than his contemporaries? 

  3. How did colonists in Boston react to the Tea Act? Why? 

  4. What were the Coercive Acts? Why did colonists throughout America react so   strongly to acts that primarily affected Boston? 

  5. What were some of the differences and disagreements among the delegates at the   Continental Congress? How did these divisions impact the content and tone of the    “Declaration and Resolves of the First Continental Congress”? 
  6. What events led to the violence between British redcoats and Massachusetts   minutemen at Lexington, Massachusetts?

Day Four
“‘Tis Time to Part”: Thomas Paine’s “Common Sense” 

Divine, pages 150-152 
Supplement: Second Continental Congress, "Declaration of the Causes..." 
Supplement: Paine, "Common Sense" 

Begin a chart with two columns and list the ways in which the Revolution was radical and the ways in which it was conservative. 

   What transformed the colonial rebellion of the 1770’s into a war for independence? 

  Second Continental Congress, George Washington, Prohibitory Act, Thomas Paine,   “Common Sense” 
  Homework Questions: 
  1. How were the tone and content of the “Declaration of the Causes of the Necessity of   Taking Up Arms” of the Second Continental Congress different from the Declaration   and Resolves of the First Continental Congress? 

  2. Why, with American colonies already engaged in battle with Britain, didn’t the Second Continental Congress declare independence in 1775? 

  3. Why was Thomas Paine’s pamphlet so effective in rallying Americans towards the cause of independence from Britain? What were his arguments for separation from the   mother country?

Day Five
Asserting the Inalienable Rights of Man: The Declaration of Independence 

Divine, page 152 (on Declaration) 
Supplement: Declaration of Independence 
Supplement: Jefferson, Paragraph Omitted from Final Draft of Declaration...  

Is the Declaration of Independence a radical document? 

  Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, inalienable rights 

  Homework Questions: 
  1. In what ways does the Declaration of Independence reflect the foundations of British   political tradition? In what sense does it depart from that tradition? 

  2. Why was Jefferson’s paragraph on the slave trade omitted from the final draft of   the Constitution? 

Day Six
The War for Independence: A Revolution for Whom? 
Divine, pages 152-63 
Supplement: Martin, "Protest and Defiance in the Ranks" 
Abigail Adams, "Remember the Ladies" 
Prepare for Debate 

Did the War for Independence constitute a revolution?  In what sense?  For whom? 

  George Washington, Continental Army, Loyalist (Tory), Patriot, Battle of Staten Island, Battle of Saratoga, General William Howe, Treaty of Alliance (with France),   Battle of Yorktown, General Cornwallis, Treaty of Paris (of 1783) 

  Homework Questions: 
  1. What factors allowed the British to enter the war confident that they could beat the   Americans?  What advantages did the British have? 

2. What conditions and circumstances helped the Americans to neutralize many of Britain’s advantages?  What similarities do you see between the Vietnam War and the Revolutionary War? 

  3. What role did the Continental Army and local militias play in the American war   effort? 

  4. What role did African-Americans play in the war?  What led some of them fight for   the Americans?  Why did some to fight for the British? 

  5.  Why did the military situation look poor for the Americans in late 1776? 

  6. What led France to support the American cause?  What impact did French support   for the Americans have on the war? 

  7. Why did some Americans remain Loyalists?  How did they view the Patriot cause?    How were they treated by Patriots? By the British? 

  8. What were the main provisions of the Treaty of Paris of 1783?

Day Seven
Debate - The American Revolution: Radical or Conservative? 

Standard Debate Form 

The American Revolution was a conservative revolt, aimed at preserving the status quo, rather than expanding liberties in a radical way. 

To prepare for the debate read the secondary sources provided (Wood, Rossiter, Jensen handouts), primary sources in your classroom copies of American Spirit, and all supplemental material.  Be prepared with facts and quotations to support your argument. 

In constructing your argument consider the following questions: 

How do you define "radical" and "conservative"? 
Is the Revolution internal or external or both? 
Is the Revolution radical/conservative politically?  Economically?  Socially? 
Is there an important difference between the means and the ends of the Revolution? 
When does the Revolution begin? End?  Is it complete? 
Is the Revolution a means of maintaining the status quo? 
Does the Revolution do what its leaders intended? 
Can a revolution be radical without addressing the institution of slavery? 

We will split into two teams, one defending(pro) and one refuting(con) the statement above.  You may break up responsibilities in whatever way your group chooses.  We will follow the debate format below (see standard debate form for suggestions - LINK). 

pro - 5 minutes 
con - 5 minutes 

pro rebuttal - 10 minutes 
con rebuttal - 10 minutes 

pro defense - 5 minutes 
con defense - 5 minutes 

pro concluding remarks - 2 minutes 
con concluding remarks - 2 minutes 

There is nothing more common than to confound the terms of American Revolution with those of the late American War.  The American War is over, but this is far from being the case with the American Revolution.  On the contrary,, nothing but the first act of the great drama is closed. 
                                                                                             -Dr. Benjamin Rush