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Problems of the American Revolution

Essay by   •  November 20, 2011  •  Case Study  •  948 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,401 Views

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The American Revolution was a political overthrow that began in 1763 to gain freedom from the British Empire. After the end of the Seven Year' War in 1763, Great Britain had become the world's most prestigious colonial power. At the end of the war, British policy makers sought ways to gain income from the American colonies to pay off the British army expenses. Americans believed neither the king nor Parliament should have the power to interfere with their domestic affairs, and that no tax could be collected without the permission of their own assemblies. Crises would follow from the 1770s until 1776, when the colonists declare their independence from Britain.

Economic issues had a lot to do with the cause of the Revolution. The most famous issue was "taxation without representation." Many colonists argued that they didn't want to pay taxes enacted by people who they could not vote for. The British also put in place the Sugar Act, which made colonial merchants pay six pence per gallon of imported molasses. They also enforced the Navigation Act, which stopped direct colonial trade with the Netherlands, France, and other European nations. This destroyed New England's economy and sent them into a depression. The Sugar Act was eventually repealed, but the Navigation Act was still enforced blocking New England's economy.

Next was the Townshend Acts which placed taxes on glass, paint, oil, lead, paper, and tea. It would later be repealed with the exception of tea. Tea was shipped to all the harbors and denied. In Boston, Sam Adams, with the help of other colonists, took the tea and dumped it in the Boston Harbor. The city of Boston was ordered to pay back the East India Company for the loss of tea. Britain would then enforce the Intolerable Acts, which closed the harbor. New England would then be in a depression without an economy because of several British laws.

The Revolution was the result of a series of social and intellectual transformations in early American society and government. The movement known as the Enlightenment, was a serious component in the cause of the American Revolution. The Enlightenment stressed concepts like religious tolerance, democracy, liberty, and liberal governments. The Revolution was more than just a protest against English authority, but it provided a blueprint for the organization of a democratic society.

The ideas of liberalism imply that that all men had inalienable rights and sovereignty lay with the people. The ideas of liberalism were very popular among the American colonists. These ideas would lead them to reshape political thinking during the American Revolution, which would eventually replaced a king with a constitutional republic. This Liberal thinking led to the 1773 Boston Tea Party, and rebellion against the Stamp Act in the late 1760s. Not only was the Tea Party an act of defiance against English Parliament, but also an act of defiance

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