Theodore Parker, American Revolution, reform, abolition


Just like any significant historical event, the Memory and ideals of the American Revolution became an important point of reference for the many rhetoricians that followed. Politicians, reformers, and ministers used the "spirit" or "age" the Revolution as an authoritative text for their modern agendas. As a result, the meaning of the event became malleable, with many people claiming a different lesson to be used for their specific cause. Theodore Parker, a Bostonian Transcendentalist minister writing during the two decades prior to the Civil War, was one of these individuals. He hearkened back to the Revolution as a way to strengthen his message-the mere attachment of it to his reform labors added credence to his rhetorical style.