The American Crisis Primary Source Questions
Thomas Paine, 1776-1783
Read The American Crisis in its entirety here.
- What is Paine implying when he refers to some soldiers as “summer soldiers” and “sunshine patriots”?
- What is the main right that Paine argues they must continue to fight for?
- Do you think this essay was written towards the beginning of the war or the end? Why do you think so?
- Does Paine argue that the Patriots should have waited to declare war or that they should have declared it sooner?
- What reaction was Paine hoping to spark in his audience?
- Paine says he could not be convinced to start an offensive war. What reason then does he give for justifying the Patriots’ involvement in their current war?
- What does Paine ask of his fellow Patriots to end his essay?