To what extent did the American Revolution fundamentally change American society? In your answer, be sure to address the political, social, and economic effects of the Revolution in the period from 1775 to 1800.
The American Revolution was a critical turning point in American history. Following the French and Indian War, Britain ignored its previous policy of salutary neglect and began intervening in the colonies affairs through taxes, occupation of soldiers, violation of civil liberties, all the while ignoring colonial pleas for representation in Parliament. These events led to the “shot heard ‘round the world” at the Battles of Lexington and Concord in April 1775. America was now at war with Britain. Nevertheless, the impact of…show more content…
Instead, they decided that it would be better to draft a new document that would establish a new type of government. Many agreed to this new government, especially James Madison, author of the Virginia Plan and the Federalist Papers. To Madison, as addressed in Federalist No. 51 (Document I) the new government must give more power to the federal level, but also be able to check its “ambitions”. From this came the system of checks and balances, and a separation of powers. This new government was described in the Constitution of the United States of America. The federal government had three branches: legislative, executive and judicial. Nevertheless, they still gave some power to the states. The Framers also added a Bill of Rights to dissuade Antifederalists that the new government gave too much power to the national government. This Bill of Rights protected American many civil liberties such as freedom of speech and assembly; right to bear arms and a fair trial; as well as freedom of religion. Pre-Revolution, England had imposed its religion on the colonies, however, after the war, states began to guarantee freedom of worship as evidenced by the “Statutes at Large of Virginia, 1786” (Document D). Therefore, the American Revolution fundamentally changed American politics by eliminating monarchy and embracing democracy.
Socially, the Revolution affected groups very differently. For African-Americans, the Revolution was very