Thursday, April 12, 2012

Abraham Kuyper And Democracy

Abraham Kuyper's definition of democracy is directly linked to his reading of American protestantism through the book De la démocratie en Amérique.

It's impossible to understand Abraham Kuyper's speech 'Maranatha' without a clear understanding of what Kuyper means when he talks about democracy.

It's noteworthy how Peter van Rooden accuses Abraham Kuyper for creating the pillarization. One phrase that sums up Kuyper's views however is:
'God toont ons in de geschiedenis dat de godsdienst alleen bloeit, wanneer ze aan de belijders wordt overgelaten'
'God shows us in history that religion only flourishes when it is left to the confessors'. Kuyper had read de Tocqueville's book in 1873 and several other book, as he told Groen van Prinsterer at the time. Later that year he held the speech called 'Calvinism, grondtoon en waarborg onzer constitutionele vrijheden' which argued that Calvinism was the source and garant of our constitutional freedoms.

The visit and speeches in 1898 in Grand Rapids and Princeton shed more light on Abraham Kuyper and his understanding of democracy and America's 'new man'.

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