Religion, Revolution and English Radicalism: Non-conformity in Eighteenth-Century Politics and Society
In the age of the American Revolution, the political issues surrounding John Wilkes, the colonies, and parliamentary reform agitated the nation, and recent studies of party ideology and voting behavior have shown how these national issues divided England. But subsequent work on the peerage and Anglican political theory has depicted a more placid, deferential populace. This book engages the discussion by drawing attention to the social and political activities of the English Dissenters. The Nonconformists' legal standing, social status, and political behavior help illumine a number of unexamined causes for both the social stability and the political stresses of Hanoverian England. Legal inequities provoked strong opposition to the government's American policy from the dissenting elite, and while the ministers' publications suggest the depth of popular discontent, previous accounts have been unable to show how popular sentiment was transformed into radical behavior. By comparing sermons, political pamphlets, and election ephemera to poll books, city directories, and baptismal registers, this book offers an integrated approach to the study of ideology and behavior.
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activity American Revolution Anglican artisans associated attempt authority Baptist behavior boroughs Bristol British Burke candidates cause chapel Church coercive Colchester colonies Commons compared concerning Congregational connection consistent constitution contest continuity contributed corporation David differences Dissenters Dissenting ministers divisions early economic eighteenth century election electorate elite England English Evans evidence examined example expressed George hand History ideology important independence influence interest issues James John king less liberty List Liverpool London majority measures meeting merchants ministers Murray nature Newcastle Nonconformists Nonconformity Nottingham occupational opposition oppression Parliament parliamentary party percent period petition petitioners political poll popular Popular Politics Presbyterian present Quakers radical ranks records registers religion religious represented Sermons signed social Society Structure Table Thomas thought tion Tory viewed vote voters Walker Whig
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