The Antinomian Controversy
"free grace" with another writer, quoted the synod of 1637
against his opponent.26 When the Great Awakening broke out
in New England in the 174os, a minister who viewed the revival
as a manifestation of "enthusiasm" and not as a work of grace,
cited in his favor the findings of the
Nathaniel Haw-
thorne was more sympathetic; in The Scarlet Letter (1850), he
likened Hester Prynne, a rebel for the sake of "heart," to Anne
And in our day Anne Hutchinson has become
emblematic of the possibilities-long thwarted, though never
wholly suppressed-for women to assert spiritualleadership.29
Preparing these texts for publication many years ago, I had
the skillful assistance of A vi Soifer. This time around, I want to
thank Michael McGiffert for aid of many kinds over the years,
and in particular for reviewing this new preface. I am grateful
to Janice Knight for other comments, and to Stanley Fish and
Jane Tompkins for recommending a new edition of this book.
A few errors crept into the first edition, and these have been
corrected. I have provided some additional commentary in the
form of new footnotes. These notes, introduced into this edition
of The Antinomian Controversy) appear on the pages listed
below. Each note is indicated by an asterisk at the bottom of its
respective page.
Notes to the Second Edition
P. 51: The theological and philosophical language in Question
IX is explicated in two useful articles: "habit" in Norman Fiering,
"Benjamin Franklin and the Way to Virtue" and "The Image of
God in Adam" in Jesper Rosenmeier, "New England's Perfection."
26. Daniel Williams,
Gospel-truth Stated and Defended
27. Charles Chauncy,
Seasonable Thoughts on the State of Religion
(Boston, 1743).
28. Colacurcio, "Footsteps of Anne Hutchinson."
29. Two words of caution are in order. Anne Hutchinson was prob-
ably not a practicing midwife, since that name is never used in connection
with her in the records. And while she opposed the authority of the minis-
ters, she may not have been an egalitarian. Her theology seems to involve
the distinction between the few gathered saints, and the hypocritical worldly.
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