AP U.S. History Notes

Chapter 16: The Ferment of Reform and Culture, 1790-1860

polygamy - The practice or condition of having two or more spouses at one time. “Accusations of polygamy likewise arose and increased in intensity…”

theocracy - Literally, rule by God, the term is often applied to a state where religious leaders exercise direct or indirect political authority. “… the community became a prosperous frontier theocracy and a cooperative commonwealth.”

utopian - Referring to any place or plan that aims at an ideal social order. “Bolstered by the utopian spirit of the age, various reformers … set up more than forty [cooperative] communities…”

zealot - one who is carried away by a cause to an extreme or excessive degree.

communistic - Referring to the theory or practice in which the means of production are owned by the community as a whole. “… various reformers … set up more than forty communities of a  … communistic nature.”

communitarian - Referring to the belief in or practice of the superiority of community life or values over individual life, but not necessarily the common ownership of material goods. “… various reformers … set up more that forty communities of a … ‘communitarian’ nature.”

free love - The principle or practice of sexual relations unrestricted by law, marriage, or religious constraints. “It practiced free love (‘complex marriage)”….”

eugenic - Concerning the improvement of the human species through selective breeding or genetic control. “It practiced … the eugenic selection of parents to produce superior offspring…”

monogamy - The belief in or practice of marrying only one spouse at a time. “In 1979-1880 the group embraced monogamy and abandoned communism.”

classical - Concerning the culture of ancient Greece or Rome, or any artistic or cultural values presumed to be based on those enduring principles. “He brought a classical design to his Virginia hilltop home, Monticello…”

mystical - Referring to the belief in the direct apprehension of God or divine mystery, without reliance on reason or human comprehension. “These mystical doctrines of transcendentalism defined precise definition…”

nonconformist - One who refuses to follow established or conventional ideas or habits. “Henry David Thoreau … was … a poet, a mystic, a transcendentalist, and a nonconformist.”

nonviolence - The principle of resolving or engaging in conflict without resort to physical force. “His writings … inspired the development of American civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr’s. thinking about nonviolence.”

providential - Under the care and direction of God or other benevolent natural or supernatural forces. “… he lived among cannibals, from whom he providentially escaped uneaten.”

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How to cite this note (MLA)

Aboukhadijeh, Feross. "Chapter 16: The Ferment of Reform and Culture, 1790-1860" StudyNotes.org. Study Notes, LLC., 17 Nov. 2012. Web. 26 May. 2024. <https://www.apstudynotes.org/us-history/vocabulary/chapter-16-ferment-reform-culture/>.