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Jonathan Mayhew: Conservative Revolutionary

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Abstract:

In this essay I suggest that perceived tension in Mayhew’s political and social thought is resolved by taking full account of the conservative (i.e., traditional) aspects of his political thought. Mayhew’s social thought did contain elements that were profoundly conservative, most notably his belief in a relatively fixed social hierarchy. More, the presumption of a natural social ordering of men and the attendant emphasis on deference stands in tension with the more radical principles that characterized Mayhew’s political theory. This tension is reconciled, however, by his faith in a self-correcting British constitution and in a king characterized by a paternal regard for his subjects—assumptions that are reminiscent of a common law tradition that continued to shape colonial political thought at the start of the British-colonial crisis.

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mayhew (194), polit (64), sermon (63), snare (51), broken (51), liberti (48), coloni (37), king (36), discours (35), resist (33), peopl (30), act (29), bailyn (29), govern (28), american (27), social (26), law (26), revolut (25), preach (24), august (23), religion (23),

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Jonathan Mayhew, Whig, American Revolution
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Association:
Name: MPSA Annual National Conference
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http://www.indiana.edu/~mpsa/


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p268944_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Lubert, Howard. "Jonathan Mayhew: Conservative Revolutionary" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the MPSA Annual National Conference, Palmer House Hotel, Hilton, Chicago, IL, Apr 03, 2008 <Not Available>. 2013-12-14 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p268944_index.html>

APA Citation:

Lubert, H. L. , 2008-04-03 "Jonathan Mayhew: Conservative Revolutionary" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the MPSA Annual National Conference, Palmer House Hotel, Hilton, Chicago, IL Online <PDF>. 2013-12-14 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p268944_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: In this essay I suggest that perceived tension in Mayhew’s political and social thought is resolved by taking full account of the conservative (i.e., traditional) aspects of his political thought. Mayhew’s social thought did contain elements that were profoundly conservative, most notably his belief in a relatively fixed social hierarchy. More, the presumption of a natural social ordering of men and the attendant emphasis on deference stands in tension with the more radical principles that characterized Mayhew’s political theory. This tension is reconciled, however, by his faith in a self-correcting British constitution and in a king characterized by a paternal regard for his subjects—assumptions that are reminiscent of a common law tradition that continued to shape colonial political thought at the start of the British-colonial crisis.

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Associated Document Available Political Research Online

Document Type: PDF
Page count: 29
Word count: 10100
Text sample:
Jonathan Mayhew: Conservative Revolutionary Howard L. Lubert Department of Political Science MSC 7705 James Madison University Harrisonburg VA 22807 luberthl@jmu.edu © Copyright by Howard L. Lubert. Please do not quote without permission. 2 Introduction Jonathan Mayhew’s place in American revolutionary thought revolves principally around three sermons he delivered from his pulpit in Boston’s West Church: his 1750 Discourse Concerning Unlimited Submission an August 1765 sermon on the Stamp Act crisis and his May 1766 The Snare Broken. The Discourse
and a paternalistic social hierarchy. In contrast we can imagine his rhetoric on that August day as more passionate perhaps coarser appealing to the common people and thus inadvertently “attacking the habit of deference to the written word and to the gentlemen who mastered it.”61 The leveling consequences of his rhetoric were manifested the following day in the mob’s outward attack on one of Boston’s most prominent symbols of the old order. Mayhew aghast at how vulnerable the old


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