Colonial Literature : Native American and Puritan 1620-1776 by WWJe6RN

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									   Colonial Literature :
Native American and Puritan
The control of one nation by
 “transplanted” people of another
 nation — often a geographically
 distant nation that has a different
 culture and dominant racial or ethnic
Colonial Literature 1620-1776
American writing began with the work of
English adventurers and colonists in the New
World chiefly for the benefit of readers in the
mother country.

From the beginning, however, the literature of
New England was directed to the instruction
of the colonists themselves.
          Colonial Literature
  Consisted of pamphlets and writings, poetry, sermons
  diaries and histories.

Honored the benefits of European and colonist audiences
• Religious Disputes:
   – John Winthrop discussed the religious foundations of the
     Massachusetts Bay Colony.
   – Roger Williams and Nathaniel Ward argued state and
     church separation.
• Poetry
   – Anne Bradstreet is considered to be the first American
   – Edward Taylor was a Puritan poet and minister who was
     one of the finest literary artists of colonial America.
   – Later writings described conflicts and interaction with the
The four groups that founded
  American Literature…..
• Native Americans = oral traditions

• Puritans = sin and salvation (religious)

• African Americans = narrative writings

• Southern Planters = social writing
      Native American Literature

• Mainly viewed as folklore (myth and
• Native American literature mainly focuses
  on song lyrics, hero tales, migration
  legends, and myths of creation.
• In oral tradition, the telling of a tale may
  change with each speaker, and the words
  are almost sure to change over time.
• Thus, no fixed versions of such literary
  works exist.
• One common characteristic of their work is
  a respect for nature.
           Types of
  Native American Literature
Myth – a fictional tale that explains the
 actions of gods or heroes or the
 causes of natural phenomena

Legend – a traditional story that usually
 deals with a particular person---hero
 or national hero.
     Puritan Content
*errand into the wilderness

*be a city upon a hill
  (a phrase from the parable of Salt and Light
  in Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. In Matthew
  5:14, he tells his listeners, "You are the
  light of the world. A city that is set on a hill
  cannot be hidden." )

*Christian utopia (ideally perfect state;
  especially in its social and political and
  moral aspects )
          The Puritans
The early religion of the colonies was one based
  primarily on Puritan belief.
The Puritans were a fundamentalist group who felt
  that the church had become corrupt and that it
  was the scriptures not one’s appearance that were
  important to the religion.
Finding no tolerance for their views in Europe they
  chose to risk their fates in the colonies where they
  could institute the biblical paradise that they
  believed in so strongly.
Among these early Puritans were the fabled pilgrims
  who founded Plymouth colony and countless
  others that followed.
      The Puritans Cont’d
The Puritan belief system was a harsh one
  which felt that all men were fundamentally
  evil because Adam, in his original sin, had
  broken his covenant to God.
However, they also believed that a certain
  select group were descendents of Abraham
  and thus were eligible for a second
  covenant that allowed them to receive God’s
 Although the Puritans believed in the
  fundamental equality of man, a spiritual
  upper class consisting of ministers and
  patriarchs was created and ruled their
  makeshift divine kingdom with fervor.
           Puritan Poetry

Puritan poetry was offered uniformly to the
service of God.
           Puritan Poets

Anne Bradstreet's poems were reflective of her own
  piety. Bradstreet always viewed her life within a
  spiritual context: every event no matter how trivial,
  bore a divine message; every misfortune served to
  remind her of God’s will and the path of salvation.

Edward Taylor, whose work was not published until
  two centuries after his death
         Edward Taylor
He was very, very pious. But his
 piety was sincere. It was fed by a
 long continuous spiritual
 experience arising, so he felt,
 from a mystical communion with
 Christ. The reality and depth of
 this experience is amply
 witnessed by his poetry."

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