Other books byDavid D. Hall
A History of the Book in America
The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World
A History of the Book in America is a five-volume, interdisciplinary series that offers a collborative history of the book in American culture from the earliest days of European settlement to our own days. Its creation is a principal activity of the American Antiquarian Society. Volume 1, The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World is organized around three major themes: the persisting colonial relationship between European settlements and the Old World; the gradual emergence of a pluralistic book trade that differentiated printers from booksellers; and the transition from a "culture of the Word" to the culture of republicanism. The volume also describes nascent forms of literary and learned culture (including the circulation of manuscripts), literacy and censorship, orality, and the efforts by Europeans to introduce written literacy to Native Americans and African Americans.
The Antinomian Controversy, 1636-1638
A Documentary History
The Antinomian controversy—a seventeenth-century theological crisis concerning salvation—was the first great intellectual crisis in the settlement of New England. Transcending the theological questions from which it arose, this symbolic controversy became a conflict between power and freedom of conscience. David D. Hall’s thorough documentary history of this episode sheds important light on religion, society, and gender in early American history. This new edition of the 1968 volume, published now for the first time in paperback, includes an expanding bibliography and a new preface, treating in more detail the prime figures of Anne Hutchinson and her chief clerical supporter, John Cotton. Among the documents gathered here are transcripts of Anne Hutchinson’s trial, several of Cotton’s writings defending the Antinomian position, and John Winthrop’s account of the controversy. Hall’s increased focus on Hutchinson reveals the harshness and excesses with which the New England ministry tried to discredit her and reaffirms her place of prime importance in the history of American women.
The Faithful Shepherd
A History of the New England Ministry in the...
This description of the Americanization of a European institution, the Puritan ministry as it was transported to the New England colonies in the seventeenth century, offers a host of new insights into American religious history. By focusing on such areas as the ministers' authority, church membership, and ecclesiastical organization, David D. Hall shows that, although the effects of the American experience might be considered liberalizing or democratizing in the first years of settlement, during the entire course of the seventeenth century the New World environment produced an institutional development that returned the churches to forms and doctrines that existed before the emigration from Europe. The Faithful Shepherd not only sustains a bold thesis about Americanization but also affords the reader one of the freshest and most comprehensive histories of the seventeenth-century New England mind and society. This new printing contains a new introduction reflecting on how our understanding of seventeenth-century New England has developed since the book was first published.
A Reforming People
Puritanism and the Transformation of Public...
A revelatory account of the aspirations and accomplishments of the people who founded the New England colonies, comparing the reforms they enacted with those attempted in England during the period of the English Revolution. Distinguished historian David D. Hall looks afresh at how the colonists set up churches, civil governments, and methods for distributing land. Bringing with them a deep fear of arbitrary, unlimited authority grounded in either church or state, these settlers based their churches on the participation of laypeople and insisted on “consent” as a premise of all civil governance. Encouraging broad participation and relying on the vigorous use of petitioning, they also transformed civil and criminal law and the workings of courts. The outcome was a civil society far less authoritarian and hierarchical than was customary in their age—indeed, a society so advanced that a few dared to describe it as “democratical.” They were well ahead of their time in doing so. As Puritans, the colonists also hoped to exemplify a social ethics of equity, peace, and the common good. In a case study of a single town, Hall follows a minister as he encourages the townspeople to live up to these high standards in their politics. This is a book that challenges us to discard long-standing stereotypes of the Puritans as temperamentally authoritarian and their leadership as despotic. Hall demonstrates exactly the opposite. Here, we watch the colonists as they insist on aligning institutions and social practice with equity and liberty. A stunning re-evaluation of the earliest moments of New England’s history, revealing the colonists to be the most effective and daring reformers of their day.