- Mar 14, 2004
I don't think we disagree that much.
I don't either. And I don't meant to get pedantic. I'd just like to see the Enlightenment play as big a role as the Reformation in the game. I think it was just as big a deal, and just as big a dividing line of history. The Enlightenment ought to trigger big game-altering changes to the game, shifting the Renaissance era to the Age of Revolutions. And the colonial revolts were a big part of that.
I just don't think that the main triggering reason of the American revolution were ideas about equality and democracy. Those were ideas of the few enlightened minds which wrote the constitution but I very much doubt Americans went to war with England over those principles.
This I mainly disagree with. The Enlightenment ideals really did trickle down into the populace at large, and it was a major reason the Revolution happened as it did. Mainly through the Great Awakening which created a mass evangelical fervor in the populace mixed with a challenge to religious and secular authority. It super-charged American society putting everyone in a feisty mood and making them disinclined to listen to authority.
The average America wasn't quoting philosophy, but he had incorporated the ideas into his worldview. Much as later economic populists hadn't really read Marx, but the idea that the people had a claim on controlling industry had trickled down as a legitimate thing to believe.
But yes, you're totally right that people revolting over taxes has a long history. So a massive colonial tax revolt is hardly out of the question.