Graduation Year

Spring 2013

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

History

Reader 1

Lisa Cody

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Rights Information

© 2913 Sydney A. Miller

Abstract

Both the Centinel and the Republican were publishing during a period when newspapers became increasingly partisan. Editors were changing from largely nonpartisan craftsman to advocates of party policy. Newspapers aligned with the two political parties of the day, the Federalists and the Democratic-Republicans. As statements of political ideology, these papers reveal not only partisan polarization, but also the parties’ shared ideological roots. Though the Federalists and Republicans

responded to British aggression in very different ways (one wanting peace at any cost, the other militarization), their reactions paradoxically stem from a common Enlightenment theory of “universal peace,” which held republics to be inherently peaceful institutions. The patriotic poems of the Republican and the Centinel support the idea of a bipartisan reluctance to go to war that J.C.A. Stagg, George Daughan, and Alan Taylor allude to in their comprehensive histories of the war of 1812. The theory of “universal peace” made both Federalists and republicans felt that the belligerent empires were forcing the United States into a military conflict that ill-suited its republican form of government.

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