Benjamin Franklin, Jonathan Edwards, and the Representation by Barbara B. Oberg, Harry S. Stout

By Barbara B. Oberg, Harry S. Stout

This interdisciplinary choice of comparative essays by way of uncommon historians and literary critics seems at elements of the idea of Jonathan Edwards and Benjamin Franklin and considers where of those males in American tradition. most likely the 2 such a lot tested figures of the colonial interval, they've got usually been the item of comparative reports. those characterizations frequently painting them as at the same time specific perfect kinds, therefore putting them in different types as assorted and adversarial as "traditional" and "modern." In those essays--by such students as William Breitenbach, Edwin Gaustad, Elizabeth Dunn, and Ruth Bloch--polemical contrasts disappear and Edwards and Franklin end up contrapuntal topics in a bigger solidarity. Benjamin Franklin, Jonathan Edwards, and the illustration of yankee tradition is a useful addition to scholarship on American literature and notion.

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25-26. In this and in all other quotations, I have retained the original italics. 9. WJE, 2, p. 84. 10. Many scholars have noted the resemblances between BF's Autobiography and Puritan conversion narratives. See, for examples, Philip D. Beidler, "The 'Author' of Franklin's Autobiography" Early American Literature 16 (1981-82): 257-69; Gilmore, "Franklin and the Shaping of American Ideology," pp. 11112; John Griffith, "The Rhetoric of Franklin's Autobiography" Criticism 13 (1971): 89-93; David Levin, "The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin: The Puritan Experimenter in Life and Art," Tale Review 53 (1964): 261-63; David L.

The law of cause and effect is obviously incompatible with divine intervention. Edwards's sermons are no more satisfactory. In his The Most High a Prayer Hearing God (1735-36), he affirms that God hears the prayers of men and that Enlightenment and Awakening 37 he exercises his mercy, but Edwards still does not put the two statements together in an assertion that individual prayers are responded to. "51 Even on the affirmative side, Edwards says merely that "God can answer prayer, though he bestow not the very thing for which we pray.

56. WJE, 2: 420. 57. Jonathan Edwards: Representative Selections, ed. Clarence H. Faust and Thomas H. Johnson (New York, 1962), p. 410. 58. WJE, 2: 127. 59. On BF's detachment, see Carl Becker, "Franklin's Character," in Benjamin Franklin, ed. Barbour, pp. , 1987), pp. 57-59; Silverman, "Introduction," pp. " pp. 332-33. 3 Enlightenment and Awakening in Edwards and Franklin A. OWEN ALDRIDGE The contrary perspectives of the religious movement known in America as the Great Awakening and the intellectual movement embracing most of Europe and America known as the Enlightenment may be seen in the attitudes of a representative of each movement, Jonathan Edwards and Benjamin Franklin, respectively.

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