Christian Humanism and the Puritan Social Order

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Cambridge University Press, Nov 7, 2002 - Political Science - 304 pages
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Traditional views of puritan social thought have done a great injustice to the intellectual history of the sixteenth century. They have presented puritans as creators of a disciplined, progressive, ultimately revolutionary theory of social order. The origins of modern society and politics are laid at the feet of zealous English protestants whose only intellectual debts are owed to Calvinist theology and the Bible. Professor Todd demonstrates that this view is fundamentally ahistorical. She places puritanism back in its own historical milieu, showing puritans as the heirs of a complex intellectual legacy, derived no less from the Renaissance than from the Reformation. The focus is on puritan social thought as part of a sixteenth-century intellectual consensus. This study traces the continuity of Christian humanism in the social thought of English protestants.

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Introduction The demythologizing of puritanism
Christian humanism as social ideology
The transmission of Christian humanist ideas
The spiritualized household
Work wealth and welfare
Conscience and the Great Chain of Being
The conservative reaction Trent Lambeth and the demise of the humanist consensus

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Elizabeth I
Susan Frye
Limited preview - 1996
Elizabeth I
Susan Frye
Limited preview - 1996
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About the author (2002)

Todd is Associate Professor of History at Vanderbilt University.

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