Historians often portray the American Revolution as an orderly, if violent, event that moved from British colonists’ high-minded ideas about freedom to American independence from Great Britain and the ratification of the Constitution of 1787.
But was the American Revolution an orderly event that took place only between Great Britain and her North American colonists? Was it really about high-minded ideas?
Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Alan Taylor joins us to explore the American Revolution as a Continental event with details from his book, American Revolutions: A Continental History. 1750-1804.
About the Show
Ben Franklin’s World is a podcast about early American history.
It is a show for people who love history and for those who want to know more about the historical people and events that have impacted and shaped our present-day world.
Each episode features a conversation with a historian who helps us shed light on important people and events in early American history.
Alan Taylor, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation Professor of American History at the University of Virginia and a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize in history, joins us to explore the American Revolution as a Continental event with details from his book, American Revolutions: A Continental History. 1750-1804.
During our exploration, Alan reveals why we should view the American Revolution as a continental event; how and why he thinks British victory in the French and Indian War started the imperial crisis that led to the Revolution; And details about the participation and involvement of white, African American, and Native American men and women in the American Revolution.
What You’ll Discover
- Why we should view the American Revolution as a continental event
- Why Alan begins the American Revolution in 1750 and ends it in 1804
- How British victory in the French and Indian War started the imperial crisis
- Native Americans and French Canadians’ involvement with the imperial crisis
- How Somerset v. Stuart informed the imperial crisis
- How Anglo-American Protestantism informed Patriot ideology
- The disaffected
- How the American Revolution divided Americans
- Women and their role in the American Revolution
- Native American allegiances during the American Revolution
- Why Americans sought foreign alliances during the Revolution
- How revolts in South America affected the American Revolution
- How the American Revolution impacted the entire North American continent
- Loyalist property confiscation and compensation
- The political and social debates of the American Revolution
Links to People, Places, and Publications
- Alan Taylor
- Alan’s University of Virginia webpage
- American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750-1804
- Eliga Gould, Among the Powers of the Earth: The American Revolution and the Making of a New World Empire
- Elizabeth Fenn, Pox Americana: The Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1775-82
Meetups & Talks with Liz
- Liz’s April 13, 2017 talk at Salem Maritime National Historic Site
- Liz’s April 29, 1pm talk at Oneida County Historical Society
- Episode 014: Claudio Saunt, West of the Revolution
- Episode 016: Alan Taylor, The Internal Enemy
- Episode 029: Colin Calloway, The Victory with No Name
- Episode 037: Kathleen DuVal: Independence Lost
- Episode 123: Revolutionary Allegiances
- Bonus: Why Historians Study History
In your opinion, what might have happened if Canada had joined the thirteen colonies and had rebelled against Great Britain? How would the American Revolution have been different?
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