Monday, September 5, 2011

Autobiography of Peter Cartwright

1856 (time period)

Right after second great awakening

Some things that i was not sure about in this writing were what were meant by "meetings". I think he is referring to church services kind of like the old camp meeting style. But i am still not completely clear on that.

A funny and interesting thing that stood out to me is when he talked about people "catching the spirit". Here he goes on to say people get the "jerks". I think what he is referring to, is when people become filled with the Holy Spirit. At first he seems to believe it but then moves on to say that most of the people that do this are weak minded and ignorant. He think this "movement" is unnecessary and most of the time a "put on".

I did not really like this character for many reasons. I feel like he talks about how he is against slavery but yet does not stand up for what he believes. He seems to "sit on the fence" about many issues. He blames the Methodist church for slavery basically saying if they were not behind it, it would not be. I think in some ways he has a valid point here. I feel like the church back then greatly influenced society. If the church was against something then most of the time people backed the church and stopped whatever was going against the church. He does in many ways predict a war, which could point to the civil war. But to me he is a weak character. I feel like with him being a preacher and saying he believes in things then not standing up for what me believes makes him a fake. Either you believe in something or you do not. There is no in-between. If you believe in something then you should be willing to stand up and fight for what you "believe" in. To me he was not this person. He wanted people to think he was great but truly he was weak.

This was not my favorite reading because i did not care for the main character. I do think that it is an important reading because many of us are much like this character in today’s society. We say we believe one way but if questioned hard enough we will desert our side to follow society. We look up to so many people that are in all actually worse off than we are. This goes back to the last story and caring about our "name". Do we want to be remembered as someone who deserted our cause or as someone who took a chance and stood up for what they truly believed even if it did not follow the "poplar" cause?

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