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George WhitefieldLife, Context, and Legacy$
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Geordan Hammond and David Ceri Jones

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198747079

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198747079.001.0001

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Whitefield and Empire

Whitefield and Empire

Chapter:
(p.82) 5 Whitefield and Empire
Source:
George Whitefield
Author(s):

Carla Gardina Pestana

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198747079.003.0006

George Whitefield owed his fame not only to his charismatic evangelical preaching but also to his extensive and continual transatlantic travel. His frequent publications conveying his experiences, including letters, journals, and sermons, familiarized a far-flung readership with the distant places he visited. In this way Whitefield brought the empire to the awareness of many readers, not just evangelical Christians. More than any other single figure he represented the British Atlantic World to its constituent parts; and he also played a key role in breaking down colonial barriers. The irony of the scholarly preoccupation with whether he helped bring about the American Revolution is that he spent most of his career inadvertently promoting a new intra-imperial consciousness. His was a life lived in and through empire.

Keywords:   empire, colonies, North America, transatlantic, travels, slavery

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