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How Democratic Was Colonial American Society: Analytical Essay

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In the New World, Africans were not only marginalized from cultural, ethnic, and social roots. They ceased to be regarded as individuals. There was a situation where differences in geographical position, social past, languages, religious beliefs, huge distances from the homeland, and scattering throughout the colonial territory did not allow for to creation of a social institution for the preservation and development of paternal African culture. The Africans were forced to adapt to a new alien and hostile environment. The process of linguistic, everyday, and socio-cultural assimilation of the Negro population began. It took over the traditions, customs, skills, and English language. This was also facilitated by the accession of Africans to Christianity. The broad missionary activities of the Baptists and Methodists laid new emotional and psychological bonds – a religion that gave the Nephites the hope of salvation, and liberation from suffering and gave meaning to their lives. This formed the objective preconditions for the emergence of a new social-racial community. The formation of the brotherly ties was influenced by racial discrimination, the ideology of ‘white superiority’, and the lifelong ‘racial inferiority’ of the black ones. The ideas of racism deeply penetrated the consciousness of the American colonists, retarding the pace of assimilation that was different in the Southern and Northern colonies. Despite the fact that throughout the New World, slavery was perceived as a mere fact, the socio-cultural, and economic situation in New England created more favorable conditions for the cultural assimilation of peoples. The multidisciplinary economy, the prevalence of farming, and the development of cities required skilled labor for slaves, which were often considered family members. They directly encountered home life, the work of white masters. Increased racial mixing, as a result of which the mulatto became part of the black population, the local in particular. In the middle of the XVIII century in the cities of New England, a stratum of free blacks appeared. On May 31, 1638, the well-known leader of the American Puritans and the founder of Connecticut Thomas Hooker delivered his first sermon at the First Church of Hartford. It said that ‘the foundation of power is based on the free consent of people, emphasizing the democratic principle of electoral power in a new colony. Thomas Hooker advocated greater religious tolerance with respect to all Christian denominations. He believed that, due to the will of God and His law, people have the right not only to elect their officials and judges but also to determine the limits of their authority. Thomas Hooker, as one of the most authoritative priests and statesmen who managed to organize the functioning of democratic processes in American colonies, is rightfully considered one of the ‘founding fathers of the United States’ and ‘father of American democracy.’

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Western Christianity is a term used to denote the religious cult of the Latin model and a number of religious denominations that have common attributes attributable to Catholicism due to the long, common, historical past (Anglicanism, Lutheranism, Presbyterianism, etc.). In the early two centuries of Western Christianity, there is a period of absence of a church organization as such, there were no clerics, dogmas of faith, developed cults, administrative persons, etc. This is the period of the existence of prophets, preachers, and apostles. They now believe that they had charisma, that is, the ability to teach, preach, create miracles, or heal the gifts of God’s spirit. There are first Christian communities. The plundering of Rome in 1527, its destruction by the soldiers of Emperor Charles V, and the actual captivity of Pope Roman Clement VII, had significant political, moral, religious, and artistic consequences. As a defeated side, the pope under the pressure of the emperor renounced the rights to Civitavecchia and Modena, Parma, and Piacenza. Forcibly he agreed to the coronation of Emperor Charles V and also the emperor of Italy. This greatly weakened the political positions of the Pope in Italy and in Europe. The tragic events in Rome prompted Charles V’s coronation to be moved to the city of Bologna because there was no unharmed or unspoiled church in Rome worthy of taking guests and a pompous emperor’s suite. Strengthening its position is European Protestantism – because of the decline of the authority of papal authority. In Germany, the mantle of Lutheranism has become. In England arose Anglicanism, where the head of the doctrine was the secular ruler – King Henry VIII. As a result, Britain officially refused to send money to Rome and did not recognize the rule of the pope in the state. The 6th century was the epoch of expansion of the Anglo-Saxon conquerors of Britain, and it ended with their undivided domination of the island. The Celtic peoples of the north and west of Britain who practiced Christianity (the Picts, the Scots, and the Britons) remained independent but retreated before the onslaught of the German-speaking newcomers.

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