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Anne Hutchinson’s Biography Essay

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Updated: Mar 22nd, 2020

England was the birthplace for Anne Hutchinson. She was born in 1591. In 1634, she opted to relocate to Massachusetts Bay Colony after following John Cotton, who was the Puritan leader. She was very instrumental in the life and times of Cotton and his brother when they were serving as Christian ministers. Hutchinson was indeed a radical character who was known everywhere.

It can be recalled that the Church of Boston excommunicated her due to her radical position. Worse still, the General Court of Massachusetts banished her on charges heresy. She died a few years later in New York following an Indian raid (Smith 68).

Hutchinson was a key personality in the controversy that surrounded the antinomy. The latter took place at the Bay Colony of Massachusetts. She managed to preserve her voice in female activism. She was one of the highest flanked females who rose beyond limitations posed by male dominance to fight for a unique purpose.

Hutchinson’s participation in religious matters was so public that she gained a lot of fame and of hatred in equal measure. It is also vital to mention that before religious activism was fuelled by Hutchinson in England, women served mostly in subordinate positions. However, the situation changed gradually as the female lay Christian ministers obtained a broad leadership scope especially after the Puritan movement gained momentum.

There were no published works, journals or correspondence lefty by Hutchinson. This was typical of several contemporary female activists. The only records left were the antinomian controversy documents. The latter contained her trial details when she was convicted by the General Court.

Historians have indeed utilized these documents after closely reading them. It is crucial to mention that the colonial crisis was marked with myriads of issues related to gender, theology, and politics. Feminism played a major role in shaping and remodeling the interests of women on religious matters (Winship 53).

The feminist command of Hutchinson was contributed by a number of factors. To begin with, she was born in a family that was already rooted in deep and widespread Christian service. Her father (Francis Marbury) was a dissenting Anglican clergyman who was known throughout England. In her early life, she developed a lot of passion and interest in leadership skills while still living with her parents. Anne also acquired adequate education in theology.

In 1605, the entire family relocated to London. After she was married to Hutchinson, they traveled widely and eventually came across John Cotton. They were indeed fascinated by his charismatic teachings. This explains why Anne finally worked closely with Cotton in supporting his teachings and perspectives. Besides, Anne decided to be the mouthpiece for women ministers who had been culturally sidelined by the dominant males.

It is perhaps prudent to briefly explore the historical impacts of female activism (feminism) that was brought about by Anne Hutchinson. First, her prosecution resulted from the fact that she overstepped the female boundaries set by culture during her preaching. Her antagonists thought that she was acting against the expectations of gender roles.

She could be categorized as a victim of contemporary wore. As a matter of fact, the Puritan society was mainly male-dominated. Therefore, it expected the female gender to act within certain confines.

She freely spoke her mind during all the deliberations. Even though the church and state had a close relationship, it was later interrupted by the feminism spirit agitated by Hutchinson. She can be credited for the additional leadership space being enjoyed by women ministers in the church today (Dailey par. 4)

Works Cited

Dailey, Barbara Ritter. Anne Hutchinson. 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2014. <http://www.history.com/topics/anne-hutchinson>

Smith, Cheryl. “Out of Her Place: Anne Hutchinson and the Dislocation of Power in New World Politics.” The Journal of American Culture, 29 (2006): 437–453. Print.

Winship, Michael Paul. The Times and Trials of Anne Hutchinson: Puritans Divided. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 2005. Print.

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