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Hollitz Chapter Essay

What is the connection between the ‘’democratic spirit’’ of the American culture in the nineteenth century and the appeal of insurgent religious groups of the Second great awakening, according to Nathan Hatch’s essay? What role did the American Revolution play in growing appeal to these groups during the awakening, according to the essay? Nathan Hatch compares the Second Great Awakening to the Jacksonian era. He states that the men trying to persuade other people to join their religion was like tyrants trying to get people to follow them. That just like the beginning stages of the revolution, this was a time of power struggle for religious leaders. Hatch writes ‘These movements empowered ordinary people by taking their deepest spiritual impulses at face value rather than subjecting them to the scrutiny of orthodox doctrine….’ Just like the revolution the Second Great Awakening brought individuals a sense of freedom to believe what they wanted to believe. In his last paragraph he writes one of the biggest influences I believe to be with this awakening.

He writes ‘…they made salvation imminently accessible and immediately available.’ What evidence do the primary sources and the essay provide to support Nathan Hatch’s explanation regarding the growth of insurgent religious groups during the Second Great Awakening? Do there appear to have been social bias for it? There definitely was a social bias towards the opinions on the growth of the religious groups. The passage by Harriet Martineau explains to us readers how women at that time really had no great meaning or place in society and that religion gave them one. Also in the passage by a former slave the slave explains the appeal of Methodism. He explains how Methodism was more understandable and easier to listen to while as the religion he was practicing before he never came home understanding but half of the meeting. Both of these passages can show how these two groups which are not socially viewed as being higher up grow liking to the religious awakening because it gives them a sense of higher self-worth. Do the primary sources offer alternative explanations for the appearance of the Second Great Awakening?

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