Richard P. Gildrie

The Profane, the Civil, and the Godly

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Richard P. Gildrie
   - The Profane, the Civil, and the Godly

In this prize-winning study of the sacred and profane in Puritan New England, Richard P. Gildrie seeks to understand not only the fears, aspirations, and moral theories of Puritan reformers but also the customs and attitudes they sought to transform. Topics include tavern mores, family order, witchcraft, criminality, and popular religion. Gildrie demonstrates that Puritanism succeeded in shaping regional society and culture for generations not because New Englanders knew no alternatives but because it offered a compelling vision of human dignity capable of incorporating and adapting crucial elements of popular mores and aspirations.