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summary of "civilizing the machine"

summary of "civilizing the machine" - virtues as...

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Amy S. Greenberg follows the rise and fall of filibuster William Walker in “A Gray-Eyed Man: Character, Appearance, and Filibustering.” Walker was an independent, fearless man with intentions to take over the Nicaraguan government. The attempt to take over a friendly government by an adventurer, also known as filibustering, eventually led to his death by firing squad at the age of thirty-six. The reader is introduced more thoroughly into the life of a filibuster through a narrative written by one of Walker’s soldiers, Deadrick. His book uncovered the crisis in pre-Civil War America between character and appearance. This is also the main topic of Greenberg’s article: the importance of a person’s appearance and character in antebellum America. She wishes to prove that William Walker’s adventures were accepted in the way that they were because of the increased “perception that the appearance of financial success had replaced “traditional”
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Unformatted text preview: virtues as the measure of a man” (676). Character, according to those of the time period, was something that was not signified by how someone dressed or looked, but in an indescribable way that should just “make itself felt” (677). Because the general public had no way to know if a man had good character, they judged on physical appearance. Walker was able to seduce workingmen into his army because he made them believe that they would be appreciated for their character and not what they looked like. However, their treatment in Nicaragua was far from how he described it. An American naval officer named Commodore Hiram Paulding eventually arrested him in the country. It was a questionable arrest, based more on the public view of the character of a filibuster, rather than any actual laws being broken....
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  • Spring '08
  • O'Hara
  • English-language films, American Civil War, Nicaragua, William Walker, Amy S. Greenberg, filibuster William Walker

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