Converging Worlds: Communities and Cultures in Colonial America, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Converging Worlds

Communities and Cultures in Colonial America, 1st Edition

Edited by Louise A. Breen


648 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Providing a survey of colonial American history both regionally broad and "Atlantic" in coverage, Converging Worlds presents the most recent research in an accessible manner for undergraduate students.

With chapters written by top-notch scholars, Converging Worlds is unique in providing not only a comprehensive chronological approach to colonial history with attention to thematic details, but a window into the relevant historiography. Each historian also selected several documents to accompany their chapter, found in the companion primary source reader.

Converging Worlds: Communities and Cultures in Colonial America includes:

  • timelines tailored for every chapter
  • chapter summaries
  • discussion questions
  • lists of further reading, introducing students to specialist literature
  • fifty illustrations.

Key topics discussed include:

  • French, Spanish, and Native American experiences
  • regional areas such as the Midwest and Southwest
  • religion including missions, witchcraft, and Protestants
  • the experience of women and families.

With its synthesis of both broad time periods and specific themes, Converging Worlds is ideal for students of the colonial period, and provides a fascinating glimpse into the diverse foundations of America.

For additional information and classroom resources please visit the Converging Worlds companion website at

Table of Contents


  1. European Ambitions and Early Contacts: Diverse Styles of Colonization, 1492-1700, Timothy Walker
  2. Tentative Testimonies: Indigenous and Spanish Accounts of the Conquest and Colonization of new Spain, 1100-1650, Heather McCrea
  3. Indians of North America: First Encounters, Michael Oberg
  4. Regions

  5. The Chesapeake Bay, L.H. Roper
  6. New England, Richard Gildrie
  7. The Caribbean Islands: British Trade, Settlement and Colonization, James Robertson
  8. Middle Colonies, Wayne Bodle
  9. The Carolinas: Shaping of a Slave Society, Noeleen McIlvanna
  10. Themes

  11. Transformations: Salem Witchcraft Tragedy, War and Empire, Louise Breen
  12. Purgatory: Interpreting Christian Missions and North American Indians, David J. Silverman
  13. The Slave Trade and Slavery, Ty Reese
  14. Women, Family, and Gender, Linda Sturtz
  15. Transformations

  16. Backcountries, Warren Hofstra
  17. Spiritual Awakenings, Kenneth Minkema
  18. Enlightenment, Ned Landsman
  19. Ambitions: Expansion of New France, Robert Morissey
  20. French and Indian War, James Piecuch

Afterword: A Revolutionary Era, Walter Sargent




About the Editor

Louise A. Breen is Associate Professor of History at Kansas State University. She is the author of Transgressing the Bounds: Subversive Enterprises among the Puritan Elite in Massachusetts, 1630-1692.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General
HISTORY / United States / General
HISTORY / United States / Colonial Period (1600-1775)
HISTORY / Americas (North, Central, South, West Indies)