Over 500 entries
The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of the American Enlightenment is the first reference work on this key subject in early American history. With substantial and original essays on key American Enlightenment figures, including Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, David Rittenhouse, Benjamin Rush, Jonathan Edwards and many others, it provides a comprehensive account to complement the intense scholarly activity that has recently centered on the European Enlightenment. This wide-ranging collection also includes topical essays, and entries on dozens of often-overlooked secondary figures.
It has long been known that Americans made their own contributions to the Enlightenment, most notably by putting Enlightenment ideas to work in defining the American Revolution, the United States Constitution, and the nature of the early American Republic. These volumes show that the American Enlightenment was more far reaching than even that story assumes. Presenting a fresh definition of the Enlightenment in America, this remarkable work confirms that the American Enlightenment constitutes the central framework for understanding the development of American history between c.1720 and c.1820.