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Faithful BodiesPerforming Religion and Race in the Puritan Atlantic$
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Heather Miyano Kopelson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781479805006

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479805006.001.0001

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“Ye are of one Body and members one of another”

“Ye are of one Body and members one of another”

(p.74) 3 “Ye are of one Body and members one of another”
Faithful Bodies

Heather Miyano Kopelson

NYU Press

This chapter examines the tension between equality and hierarchy of performing bodies in an overlapping context: English puritan iterations of the community body evoked in Roger Williams's statement that Narragansetts “make their neighbors partakers with them.” More specifically, it considers the contours and characteristics of the puritan body of Christ in Bermuda and New England, along with the ways that bodily knowledge was used by those on the puritan spectrum to organize their spiritual and political lives and to define the properly faithful body. It explores how English puritans ultimately resolved the inherent conflict over the proper configuration of the one and the many, and of the balance between hierarchy and equality, by disconnecting the body politic and the body of Christ, even as they excluded Indians and Africans from the former or treated them as an inferior and contingent part of the latter.

Keywords:   equality, hierarchy, body of Christ, Bermuda, New England, faithful body, English puritans, body politic, Indians, Africans

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