A Model of Christian Charity Themes

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American Exceptionalism

Winthrop's "A Model of Christian Charity" is often quoted as an early example of American exceptionalism. American exceptionalism is the idea that the United States is fundamentally different from other countries, and therefore defies easy comparison of policies or statistics between itself and the rest of the world. In his speech, Winthrop asserts that he and his fellow colonists have been chosen by God to fulfill a special commission, and that their actions will be watched by the rest of the world. This notion of the elevated importance of Americans and their behaviors is consistent with the idea of American exceptionalism.

A belief in the unique status of the United States was embraced by many supporters of the American Revolution, including author Thomas Paine. In his pamphlet Common Sense, Paine asserts that America is blessed with a situation unheard of in the world at the time: "Should...

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This section contains 2,013 words
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Buy the A Model of Christian Charity Study Guide
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