As humans, it is in our nature to look back on our experiences and our past knowledge in order to build or construct something for ourselves. When the colonists separated from British rule, it is evident that the ideas they were attempting to escape ended up following them as they began settling into their new society. European ethnocentrism created an immense amount of hardships for the colonists as it was so deeply ingrained that it made it extremely difficult for American self- rule to become feasible.
Between 1600 and 1678, it became evident that there was disagreement between the colonists on a umber of topics including diversity and the ideas of expansion and disruption, which made it challenging for the nation to be united. Unknowingly, this dichotomous grouping led them toward a dependency on their mother country, Britain. the beginning of our nation’s settlement, religion has been a topic of discussion and controversy in our society. In the early seventeenth century, hundreds of thousands of English men and women left Britain as a result of wanting to flee the Protestant Reformation.
Led by Martin Luther, the Protestant Reformation was the official split of the Church of England from he Catholic Church (A people of a nation pg. 37). This split led to a number of Puritans wanting to flee England in search of religious freedom as the authorities in Britain were promoting religious conformity. Towards the end of the 1620’s, the Massachusetts Bay Company was formed by a group of Puritans who wished to repair the Church of England. A new wave of Puritans came along and were attracted by the “Company’s” desire to practice religion freely.
This combination of new Puritans eventually made them the majority in New England, which allowed them to dominate this settlement. (Pg. 44) Puritans controlled the government in the northern colonies which meant their belief system greatly influenced the way in which the colonies were ruled. With the Puritans being in control, the New England preachers and the magistrates refused to allow for different religions or belief systems to be practiced (Pg. 50). Already, at this point in history, the Puritans became a mirror image of the British powers that they tried so hard to escape.
Just as the British persecuted the Puritans for their beliefs, the new colonial government began taking the same measures against people who held different religious iews. John Winthrop, Puritan governor of Massachusetts in 1692 stated that the city shall be “A city on the hill” where individuals are not focused on themselves but focused on loving each other (class notes 5/12/17). Because of this, the Puritan “city” was seen as a sanctuary for all people.
However, the Puritans demonstrated the complete opposite of this idea, as the only way they saw common good in others was if they also labeled themselves as superior in the sense that they shared the same beliefs and oppressed others for having differing perspectives. This oppression created a division in the colony nstead of actively trying to remain unified. The Puritans are a prime example of how the tables can turn when the power shifts from one group of people to another. The Parliament Navigation Acts was another component of colonial America that made it difficult for the colonists to separate themselves from rule of their mother land.
Like other European nations, England revolved around mercantilism which was the idea of being a self-sufficient nation by exporting more goods than importing. Between 1651 and 1673, the Parliament Navigation Acts were instilled which set forth three essentials of the ercantilist theory which included that only English and colonial merchants could trade in the colonies legally, certain American products were only to be sold to England or other English colonies and lastly, foriegns foods sold to the British colonies were to be imported first through England (Pg. 6).
With these new laws in place, colonial America became even more heavily dependent on England for expansion and economic growth since the colonies could only trade with them. In addition, the concept of mercantilism revolves around the idea there is a limited amount of affluence, therefore if one ation gains, another must lose. During this time, England had full control over the colonies, making them the superior nation. Because of the power England had, the colonies were unable to export goods that would compete with English goods.
With England at the center of trade, the circumstances they created made it nearly impossible for colonial America to flourish financially. Colonial America’s only hope for a successful economy lied on the shoulders of Britain, which is exactly the position the British government wanted the colonists to be in. In the 1750’s colonial America’s lack of unity led to the formation f the Albany Plan of Union in 1754. This union merely suggested a central government, but it was never passed because Britain viewed it as an act of “rebellion.
The British government also believed that in order for a group of people to have this kind of freedom, they needed to be able to protect themselves in war, which was not the case for the colonists(Pg. ). In 1756, the British declared war on France, marking the beginning of the Seven Years war, which by many is referred to as the first world war as this marked a time when European powers were fighting each other all over the world (Class notes /11/17).
This was a battle between the British, French, Native Americans and settlers for control over Western Land. Individuals from Britain as well as New England held the common fear of France gaining control over Nova Scotia since the descendants of the population were French settlers (Pg. 113). Colonial America was stuck in the middle and had to choose between fighting with France, a nation they have never allied with or Britain, their powerful motherland who they were trying to distance themselves from(Class Notes).
The British knew that the colonists were going to try and stray away from them, so hey forced them to join their side. Trying to remain neutral, colonial america was in between two powerful nation, having to make the decision of whether they want to join France, a kingdom they had never fought alongside or Britain, the kingdom that they been under the control of knowing what they are capable to and also trying to distance themselves from.
The British fearing that the settlers might not stay neutral throughout the war, persuaded, better yet forced for settlers to join their force. Even though colonial America was in the process of distancing themselves from English rule, their fear of losing and overpowered their desire to be independent, which led them to stay by Britain’s side during the war. Being a new nation, colonial America did not have the power to defeat the French empire, which meant that their only chance of saving the land was to join forces with the British empire.
Dependency was not ideal for the American colonies after 1764, however before the revolution that led America to become independent there was events and resistance that led to the American Revolution. One factor that created dependency upon Britain were the Parliament Navigation Acts, hich seem to have been extended by the Townshend Acts proposed in 1967, which applied heavy focus on trade goods such as paper,glass, and tea (Pg. 122).
These new laws passed by the England would negatively impact the American colonies with new taxes but benefit the mother country but not the thirteen colonies. There was a negative response from Colonial Americans toward these acts, in which people, specifically John Dickinson expressed that there is a difference between regulating colonial trade and taxation (Pg. 124). Disagreement with the British Parliament, resistance was presented