Ann Hutchinson

When women conform to the views of the society, in many cases these women would be highly regarded as proper and respectable individuals. However, when women went against what was expected of them, they were immediately looked down upon and it was suggested to them that they remain in a woman’s place. This led to women not being able to voice their opinions without being viewed in a negative manner. It is possible that readers can come to this conclusion when studying the prominent figure Ann Hutchinson. Ann Hutchinson was believed to be an intelligent and influential woman; however, when she expressed her own religious views, many individuals, for example John Winthop, began to think differently of Hutchinson. It was believed that when women started to evaluate material that men acquired an interest in, women began to damage their learning process and understanding of specific ideas. Though members of Hutchinson’s community felt that she was destroying her reputation, she continued to express her beliefs without fear of judgment.

Hutchinson confirmed others suspicion towards her religious beliefs while on her journey to America. When Hutchinson’s family spent many weeks with Minister William Bartholomew, Hutchinson surprised the minister in suggesting that people experience direct divine revelations. She suggested this same idea with minister Zachariah Symmes and at the end of their journey; both ministers vocalized their concerns on Hutchinson’s views. Hutchinson’s ideas can be best classified as ideas that went against the common laws that were practiced in her era. Hutchinson’s ideas are called Antinomianism. She explained that individuals had direct experiences with God which contradicted what others believed to be true. This view of Hutchinson’s led many prominent individuals to be disgusted due to the fact that Hutchinson expressed her opinions to an almost taboo subject too freely. Hutchinson did not falter on her actions and led sermons on her own.

Hutchinson was one of the most prominent women of her era because she chose to discuss a subject that women were not allowed to entertain an opinion on. She felt that what she had to say was as important as what the men in her community expressed their beliefs on. Even though some people attacked her opinions, Hutchinson wanted her voice to be heard and she did not allow anyone to tell her that she should not think or speak on things that should not have been her concern. Hutchinson took a stand for what she believed in and she did not let the fear of the possible consequences move her from her true beliefs.

 
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