An antagonist is defined as a character or even an institution which is representing opposition against each other. They could also be defined as a group or an individual who opposes the main character. In American History, two personalities Benjamin Franklin & Jonathan Edwards were seen to represent two different approaches to the creation of national identity in the years which lead to the creation of an American republic.
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Background information of the two personalities
Benjamin was born in 1706 and died in 1790, at age 84. He is said to be one of the founding fathers of the present United States of America. Franklin was a renowned author and scientist he also participated in politics as an activist which made him be popular. He participated actively in physics and history and he discovered electricity and he pioneered the first library which would lead books to the public. As a writer, he advocated for the idea of an American nation and he also helped America attain its independence while he was a diplomat during the American Revolution. He became a national hero when he spearheaded the repeal of the unpopular stamp act (Bamford, 157).
Jonathan was born in 1703 and died in 1758 at the age of 54 years. He was a theologian, preacher, and missionary to Native Americans. He is regarded as one of America’s intellectuals; his participation in revival increased the spiritual interest or the renewal of the life of the church congregation either regionally or globally.
In 1733 there was an increase of converts to Christianity after the revival which took place in that time. The revival began in the city of Northampton where most followers were converted. This brought division to the community and affected business operations in the city.
There are similarities to the creation of an American Republic.
Despite them coming from diverse backgrounds these two men were very young and full of zeal and had a dream of making the American Republic. Yet, they had never met, and neither did they ever met in their entire lifetime.
Both of them during the American revolution represented two totally different sides despite them having grown in the same era of the Calvinist culture of then-new England. They also grew up at a time which was dominated by the print media and therefore each of them was informed of what went on around them as they could be able to read any thing they found on there hands and by that they realized that the Calvinist culture was out of date (Perkins and Perkins, 214).
Having been early inventors they shared a lot of things in common with both of them being inventor in there own capacities. They also had learnt a lot from there constant hard work earning them credibility and respect amongst the fellow citizens.
There differences in there works in the creation of an American republic
Jonathan Edwards was a high priest while Benjamin Franklin was a political activist that served in different capacities from America, Britain and France during sermons in church. Mr. Edwards advocated for change in the church traditions from Calvinism to a modern way of worship because he believed that the tradition is out of date and there was need for some amendments in order to fit in the current American traditions. The culture was also foreign and not American and this resulted to the Great Awakening aimed at renewing the church practices.
On the other hand Benjamin Franklin also asked by Thomas Jefferson to review a copy of the declaration of the independence of America. It’s also noted that he was the oldest delegate at the Constitutional Convention at the age of 81(Olson, 148). He began serving as the President of Pennsylvania Society whose aim was to promote Abolition of Slavery. Franklin played a major role in the community as he is the one who presented the petition to the congress to abolish trade of slavery in 1987, after three years it was then printed by congress.
Although both of them had different reasoning in their works in the creation of a new America, there contributions though being diversely different they managed to ensure a new revolution in America. Therefore, they managed to give America its independence hence, being some of the people who brought positive reforms that ensured independence of America.
Bamford, Henry. Jonathan Edwards, the Fiery Puritan. New York: Minton. 2001. 2002
Olson, Kay. Benjamin Franklin: An American Genius. Mankato: Capstone Press. 2006. Print
Perkins, George and Perkins, Barbara. The American Tradition in Literature. New York: McGraw-Hill. 2008. Print.