During the period of time when the role of women was that of a “helpmate”, and their most complicated job entailed simple household tasks, Anne Bradstreet broke these barriers and became the first published poet from the English colonies. The poet Anne Bradstreet wrote about her life and how her trials urged her to conduct self-inspections in an effort to attempt to subdue the material desires of this world. In Bradstreet’s poem “Upon the Burning of Our House,” Puritan ideals are reflected throughout. There are several traits one must possess in order to be considered Puritan. The idea of Divine Providence and Original Sin, believing that worldly pleasures are an unhealthy vanity, and possessing faith are just a few examples of Puritan ideology.
To start off with, Divine Providence is the belief that God controls all things, that His will is evident in worldly events. Bradstreet visibly reflects this view. As Bradstreet’s house burns to the ground, she still “blest His name that gave and took” (line 14) believing that God truly owns everything, and that her time of ownership has come to an end. She also shows that she feels that God is just in his actions, that the things that were being destroyed were not hers to mourn. They were just gifts from God for him to give and take. This can be seen as an example of Puritan Typology, in which she is relating things that are happening to her with examples of things in the Bible. In this case I can actually quote from the book of Job, which Bradstreet is reflecting to. “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). She is comparing her position to that of Job who experienced much trial and tribulation, but yet managed to pra!
ise the Lord throughout his turmoil.
This excellent example of Divine Providence can lead us right into the idea of Original Sin. Puritans believed in the idea that all are born into ...