The Transformation of Virginia, 1740-1790 / Edition 1

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In this Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Rhys Isaac describes and analyzes the dramatic confrontations—primarily religious and political—that transformed Virginia in the second half of the eighteenth century. Making use of the observational techniques of the cultural anthropologist, Isaac vividly recreates and painstakingly dissects a society in the turmoil of profound inner change.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
One of the best—and most provocative—books written on colonial Anglo-America over the past decade.

Times Literary Supplement

[A] gracefully written evocation of eighteenth-century Virginia culture.

American Historical Review

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Rhys Isaac (1937-2010) was Distinguished Visiting Professor of History at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, and Emeritus Professor of History at LaTrobe University in Australia.

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Table of Contents

The Setting and the Action
Preface to the New Paperback Edition
Introduction 5
Pt. I Traditional Ways of Life
1 Prospects of Virginia: Overviews of the Landscape 11
2 Shapes in the Landscape: The Arrangement of Social Space 18
3 Figures in the Landscape: People and Environment 43
4 Church and Home: Celebrations of Life's Meanings 58
5 Occasions: Court Days, Race Meetings, Militia Musters, and Elections 88
6 Textures of Community: Mobility, Learning, Gentility, and Authority 115
Pt. II Movements and Events
7 The Parson, the Squire - and the Upstart Dissenter 143
8 Popular Upsurge: The Challenge of the Baptists 161
9 Whither Virginia? Specters of Bishop and Sectary 181
10 "Transactions in the Steeple of Bruton": A Tableau of Cultural Provincialism 209
11 Political Enthusiasm and Continuing Revivalism 243
12 Revolutionary Settlement: Religion and the Forms of Community 273
Pt. III Afterview
13 Changed Lives - Changed Landscapes 299
A Discourse on the Method: Action, Structure, and Meaning 323
Acknowledgments 359
Notes 361
About the Illustrations 415
Index 423
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