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The book The Indian Great Awakening by
Linford Fisher is part of the scholarly work on involvement to Christianity of
the Native American. A lot of this work, for now, has addressed individuals as
well as groups of people. The writer takes a broad scope of the engagement of
conversion to Christianity especially in the New England which involved
Connecticut, Long Island, Rhode Island as well as west of Massachusetts. This
took place between the year 1700 and 1820. This great awakening focuses on the
change, growth, and patterns of Indian involvement in Christian matters with
less emphasis on the roughness or smoothness of Native religion encounters. To
comprehensively bring out the whole picture of the Indian Great Awakening,
Fisher writes on several topics that exhaustively address this issue. They
include; rainmaking, evangelism, awakening, affiliating, separating, education,
migrating and remaining. It’s through these topics that the writer gives a
detailed survey on the Indian Great Awakening (Wheeler, 2012).

The book binds threads of Native past
which are not apparently taken to have a close relationship. That is land,
application of systems of the court and politics of intertribal. Chapter four
and five on affiliating and separating respectively carry a lot of content in
this book’s address to the Great Awakening. It talks about foundational basis
such freedom of affiliation by Christian believers with the circles of

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Linford Fisher writes to reconstruct a
past that is full of controversies what is known as the great Indian awakening
which is a period during the eighteen century when the native Indians in the
New England accepted Christianity. Fisher’s account was a problem with the
adoption that Indians entirely received the White colonialists and welcomed
their religion and believes. Instead, he bases his arguments on the
social-political environment in which Indians found themselves and forced them
to the wall which made them assume extreme cautions to survive, which included
a strategic change to Christianity. On page eight of his book, Fisher assures
that the Indians change to conversion to Christianity was both provisional and
practical in a significant way. The writer again states in totality some of the
feedbacks of the Indians to matters of believing from rejection to adoption, to
practically show the multiplicity as well as how the native society was diverse
(Fisher, 2012).

Linford states precisely the purpose of
the realities of the economy if the Native Indians in modeling their
engagements culturally with the New England colonies. Among the methods used by
the whites and was successful was the influence of Indians using indebtedness.
For example, the whites had a market of exchanging liquor with other goods,
Indians became so dependent on alcohol which made them owe whites huge debts
which were not easy to settle at once. This made the Indians to pay such debts
with their lands. This consecutive land loss was the center of their suffering
culturally and made them weak to the extent that it forced them to embrace the
lifestyle of the colonial evangelists to seek how to survive in such a society
(Fisher, 2012).

On page fifty-one of the book, it is
stated that education played a vital role to the missionaries since it was used
to give rise to Christians who could be able to read and write as well as
Indians who were Anglicized regarding culture. Indians in their daily life
embraced education as they changed to Christianity in multitudes. Indians
participated in a massive way in the First Great Awakening which was
characterized the continued engagements culturally as it was before. It was a
surprise as time went after the awakening that Native people and small groups
advance their beliefs and their way of life in a significant manner since they
left the colonial churches and coming up with Indian churches for themselves
(Fisher L. D., 2012).

In the educational sector, in Native
Indians commanded their space as well in a mighty way. They preferred private
local learning centers and asking for educators who were Indians when there was
such possibility. It was during the 1970s that two groups of Native Indians who
had converted to Christianity relocated to New York and established houses for
Christian Indians. It was their new place of settlement. Though most of the
England Natives who were new as well as those who suffered as a result of
Christianity, decided to continue living in New England going on with the
activities such as land leasing, agriculture as well as dong the work in the

The fact that Indian participation in the
Great Awakening is viewed in many cases as whole and conversion in totality,
Linford’s final reports on the records of the church, documents of the court as
well as friendly discussion shows the reality that advances in its complexity.
Putting this awakening in the context of loss of land as well as the fight for
equality in the culture which is ongoing in the eighteen century shows it as an
additional level in the continuing collaboration of the local people with the
views of Christians as well as the educational institutions which dominated the
colonial world. Revealing this narrative that cannot be easily shared of the
Great Awakening as well as the idea of separation of Indians which resulted,
and how it affects the culture of Indians as a community. Linford’s books which
are gracefully written gives a significant challenge to thoughts which have
been held for long as far as faith and Native Anglo-American engagements in
concerned (Fisher, 2012)

In conclusion, Linford in his book The
Indian Great Awakening uses various themes to iron out this issue leaving us
with no questions comprehensively. It is evident that the Christian colonies
influenced Native Indians and wooed then into adopting Christianity as well as
their education system.


Fisher, L. D. (2012).
Religion and the Shaping of Native Cultures in Early America. In L. D. Fisher,
The Indian Great Awakening (p. 51). New York: Oxford University Press.

Fisher, L. D. (2012). The
Indian Great Awakening. New York: Oxford University Press.

Wheeler, R. M. (2012).
Religion and the Shaping of Native Cultures in Early America. In L. D. Fisher,
The Indian Great Awakening (p. 312). New York: Oxford University Press.

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