WHOSE REBELLION? REFORMED RESISTANCE THEORY IN AMERICA: PART II

by SARAH MORGAN SMITH AND MARK DAVID HALL in Vol. 4 No. 1 / Apr 2018



Abstract
Students of the American Founding routinely assert that America’s civic leaders were influenced by secular Lockean political ideas, especially on the question of resistance to tyrannical authority. In the first part of this series, we showed that virtually all Reformed writers, from Calvin to the end of the Glorious Revolution, agreed that tyrants could be actively resisted. The only debated question was who could resist them. In this essay, we contend that the Reformed approach to active resistance had an important influence on how America’s Founders responded to perceived tyrannical actions by Parliament and the Crown.


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