Ecological determinants of the New York State temperance movement, 1828-1834

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2006-08

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Masters, Ryan Kelly

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Abstract

Using multilevel growth curve modeling, Poisson regression, and negative binomial regression I measure associations between county characteristics and the number of temperance societies in New York State during the 1820s and 1830s. Multiple waves of data collection allow for growth trajectories to be measured over time as outcomes of several social, economic, and political processes. Particular attention is given to the relationship between the growth of temperance societies and the levels of religious activity within and between counties. Findings reveal both substantive and significant associations between religious revival activity and numbers of temperance societies. These results support the theory that the New York temperance movement was largely a byproduct of the Second Great Awakening, and that the mobilization efforts of the temperance movement are best understood by fusing the life politics and contentious politics theories of social movements.

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