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The History Significance of American Revolution美國革命的歷史意義

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The History Significance of American Revolution美國革命的歷史意義
The History Significance of American Revolution

  The ways of history are so intricate and the motivations of human actions so complex that it is always hazardous to attempt to represent events covering a number of years, a multiplicity of persons, and distant localities as the expression of one intellectual or social movement; yet the historical process which culminated in the ascent of Thomas Jefferson to the presidency can be regarded as the outstanding example not only of the birth of a new way of life but of nationalism as a new way of life. The American Revolution represents the link between the seventeenth century, in which modern England became conscious of itself, and the awakening of modern Europe at the end of the eighteenth century. It may seem strange that the march of history should have had to cross the Atlantic Ocean, but only in the North American colonies could a struggle for civic liberty lead also to the foundation of a new nation. Here, in the popular rising against a “tyrannical” government, the fruits were more than the securing of a freer constitution. They included the growth of a nation born in liberty by the will of the people, not from the roots of common descent, a geographic entity, or the ambitions of king or dynasty. With the American nation, for the first time, a nation was born, not in the dim past of history but before the eyes of the whole world.
美國革命的歷史意義

歷史的進程是如此錯綜復雜,人類行為的動機是如此令人費解,以至于想把那些時間跨度大,涉及人數多,空間范圍廣的事件描述成為一個智者或一場社會運動的表現的企圖是危險的。然而以托馬斯·杰弗遜登上總統寶座為高潮的那一段歷史過程可以被視為一個特殊的例子。在這段歷史時期里不僅誕生了新的生活方式,而且民族主義成為了一種新的生活方式。美國獨立戰爭成為聯結17世紀現代英格蘭的自我意識和18世紀末現代歐洲的覺醒的紐帶。歷史的行程需要跨越大西洋,這看起來似乎有些奇怪,但卻只有在北美殖民地為民權和自由的斗爭才能導致新國家的建立。這里,反對"暴政"的民眾起義的成果不僅是獲得一個包含更多自由的憲法,還包括了一個依照人民的意愿誕生在自由中的國家的成長。這個國家不是基于血緣、地理、君主或王朝的野心。由于有了美國,第一次一個國家的誕生不是發生在歷史模糊的過去,而是在全世界人們的眼前。

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