Unformatted text preview: Long Essay Questions
1. Compare and contrast the beliefs of Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois in
the late 19th centuries. In you opinion, which man’s belief was more realistic in the
context of the time in which they were living?
a. Booker T. Washington: Born into slavery, Booker T. Washington’s early life and
education did much to influence his stance on the life of blacks during this period
after the Civil War. After the Civil War, Washington was educated in a black
school known as the Hampton Institute. After completing his education he would
then be selected as the head of the Tuskegee Normal, a vocational school that
sought to give African Americans the necessary moral instruction and practical
work skills needed to make the, successful in the work force.
■ He believed that it was economic independence and the ability to show
themselves, as blacks, to be productive members in society, and that they
should set aside any demands of civil rights.
■ His ideas were accepted by blacks who believed that the rationality and
realistic ideal of his approach. Additionally, whites were more delighted to
avoid equality and tedious approaches to rights.
b. W.E.B. Du Bois: Born into a freed family, Du Bois had never experienced the
horrors of slavery. He attended schools and even excelled as valedictorian in his
class. However, when attending school in the South, Du Bois encountered the
oppression within the Jim Crows Laws, in which this being an impactful
experience for it changed his way of thinking. He would then move safer into the
North and come to attend Harvard University where he would be the first black to
■ He believed that blacks should receive immediate equality. Additionally,
he believed that a higher education was the key to lasting gains for
c. Which man’s belief was more realistic in the context of the time in which they
■ In my opinion, Booker T. Washington’s belief is most realistic during this
period after the Civil War because after the immediate emancipation of
slaves in the South, this highly agricultural region was not expected to
give blacks equality due to the more significant problems surrounding the
nation as a whole. As we know, Reconstruction of the South was the most
prominent concentration that the nation needed, not the further equality of
blacks. With W.E.B. Du Bois’s belief, it was more realistic to encourage
blacks to receive a higher education—not immediate equality. With
Washington’s belief, even whites were pleased, making it a more rational
approach for blacks to take. 2. Compare and contrast the competing ideas of self-interest and idealism as
motivating factors for American foreign policy in the years 1890-1917.
a. Self-interest: This was a practical practice in which the United States imperialized
countries for the United State’s own benefit, for national security, a maintenance
with balance or power, and for economic interest. Examples include:
■ Navy: a powerful Navy was needed to protect the United States,
alongside the need for ports to refuel around the world. The United States
gained the Panama Canal by interfering with Colombia and Panama.
Initially, FDR tried to buy the rights to build the Panama Canal, but were
denied, afterwards, the United States would use ingenuous means to
attain the canal through helping the cause for the Panamanian revolution.
■ Markets: the United States needed new places to sell foods to and to
attain natural resources from. In Hawaii, the United States overthrew the
monarchy to keep the markets.
■ Power: The United States wanted to compete with other countries who of
which had vast amounts of colonies.
b. Idealism: This was a moral and ethical practice centered on heaping the causes
for human rights, introduction of democracy, aiding in fights for freedom, ending
conflicts, and as well as saving lives. Examples include:
■ The White Man’s Burden: This novel by Rudyard Kipling centered on the
idea that it is the duty of the white race to help all others who are not
white, for these different people were savages.
■ Religion: Many missionaries wanted to expand into other national HS in
order to spread Christianity.
■ Helping the Western Hemisphere: The Roosevelt Corollary, in extension
of the Monroe Doctrine, states that if any nation in the Western
Hemisphere appeared politically and fiscally unstable and vulnerable to
European control, the United States had the right to intervene.
■ Reconcentration Camps: Inside the Spanish American War of 1898,
Spain instituted Reconcentration camps in Cuba. They had forced
Cubans into these camps to keep them from helping rebels. About a third
of the people in these camps had died of starvation. However, when
America won the war against Spain, the United States received and
saved Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines from the Spanish.
c. Comparison: Both these ideas were used when America had began to practice
imperialism during 1890-1917. However, the earlier part of this race for
Imperialism was dominated by self-interest while the end of this period had
aspects of idealism. Overall, self-interest dominated American Imperialism. 3. “Actually Theodore Roosevelt was a conservative and accomplished very little in
terms of reform.” To what extent is historical interpretation accurate?
a. This claim of Theodore Roosevelt being a conservative and accomplishing very
little in terms of reform are false because:
■ In the realm of conservativeness: Theodore Roosevelt broke free from his
conservative shackles through trust-busting and hostility to big
businesses. Additionally, Roosevelt excessively used his executive order
to get around Congress.
● Roosevelt wanted to investigate large corporations, but only for
the ones that he had considered bad, these included large
corporations who had the goal of self-interest and not the public
good. His solution was a regulation, not elimination of
combinations and trusts.
● His administration filed 40 anti-trust suits against corporations,
even dissolving J. P. Morgan’s company.
■ In the realm of reformation: Roosevelt created his Square Deal, which
included three main points: control of the corporations, consumer
protection, and conservation of the environment.
● Control of the corps: Roosevelt filed 40 anti-trusts to several
companies that were untrustworthy, being that these companies
only served for their own benefit, not for the benefit of the society.
● Consumer protection: after the release of the novel The Jungle,
the realities of the meat industry were exposed. In consequence to
this unlawful business practice, Roosevelt passed two laws, them
being the Meat Inspection Act, which stated that federal inspection
and regulation of mean was necessary. With the Pure Food and
Drug Act, companies needed to accurately label their food and
● Conservation of the environment: Although Roosevelt was a
preservationist at heart, he knew that conservation of the
environment was the most realistic approach he could take. This
being said, to conserve the environment means to carefully use
valuable natural substances that exist in limited amounts in order
to make certain that they will be available for as long as possible.
b. Essentially, through his Square Deal, which centered on control of the corps,
consumer protection, and conservation of the environment, Roosevelt created a
stepping stone for Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal during the Great Depression
which centered on relief, recovery, and reformation. 4. To what extent did the Progressive Era show elements of continuity and change
from previous reform movements in United States history?
a. The Progressive Era showed elements of continuity and change from previous
reform movements in the history of the United States because it was a
continuation of the Populist Party, which believed in supporting the farmer
instead of the businessman, and a change from previous reform movements for
the Populists’ technique in achieving their goals is only unique to them.
b. Continuity: Populists believed that they needed to curb the uncontrolled power of
industrialists and that they needed to see change in which the lives of the
downtrodden are improved.
c. Change: The Progressive era showed elements of change from previous reform
movements in the history of the United States. The following changes are:
■ Those who joined that party: Social scientists, journalists, writers, and the
“muckrakers” who publicized industrial problems, making these issues
known to the public. This movement was based on the idea of science
and knowledge and how it could solve problems.
● It was mostly held by the middle class.
■ Their way of expressing a need for change: Several newspapers were in
circulation wars at the turn of the century. Unlike the days of yellow
journalism, the writers from this era were committed to providing accurate
stories of corruption in the United States.
● They focused on issues such as trusts, railroads, drug companies,
prostitution, and child labor. These journalist were determined to
highlight and illustrate the ills of industrialization within the United
■ Progressivism in the states: The state's reform system was referred to
“the lab of democracy” for the different attempts taking to secure power
away from the government and capitalists and giving it back to the
people. These include:
● Initiative: voters can directly propose legislation.
● Referendum: laws placed on the ballot for final approval.
● Recall: Voters can remove unwanted elected officials.
● Australian ballot: A secret ballot—remove the reach of the party
■ The role of women: women become the champions against the ills of
industrialization. They would argue that those goals in the Progressive
aim in the early 20th century were not directed against the gender norms
of the era, but rather an extension of their responsibility from the home. 5. The 1920s has been described as an era of extreme change; to what extent is
historical interpretation accurate?
a. The 1920s represented an era of extreme change from the modernization of
lifestyle, to the development of broader legislation, and to the final outcome that
would conclude the 1920s.
b. Technological changes and modernization: The 1920s was a decade of change,
when many Americans owned cars, radios, and telephones for the first time. The
cars brought the need for good roads. The radio brought the world closer to
home. The telephone connected families and friends. Prosperity was on the rise
in cities and towns, and social change flavored the air. A substantial growth of
industry occurred in North Carolina, especially in the areas of tobacco, textiles,
and furniture. Some rural farmers were leaving their farms in order to receive a
regular paycheck in the factories. Unions were on the rise.
c. The failure of the 18th Amendment: In 1920 the Eighteenth Amendment to the
U.S. Constitution was passed, creating the era of Prohibition. The amendment
forbade the manufacture, sale, or transportation of alcoholic beverages. Many
people ignored the ban, however. In 1933 the amendment was abolished, and it
became the only Constitutional amendment to be repealed.
d. The passage of the 19th Amendment: The 1920s kicked off the era of change
that Americans experienced. On August 18 the Nineteenth Amendment was
passed, giving women the right to vote.
e. The expansion of the KKK: As mentioned in the beginning of this article, the
decade also represented the worst of times. In 1921 a revival of the white
supremacist group the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) took place. The KKK was targeting
Catholics, blacks, and Jews with its terrorism.
f. The sudden downfall of the 1920s: Toward the end of the decade in October
1929, the stock market crashed, and America’s invested wealth suddenly lost
$26 billion in value. Prosperity had ended. The economic boom and the Jazz Age
were over, and America began the period called the Great Depression.
g. Synthesis: The 1920s represented an era of change and growth. The decade
was one of learning and exploration. America had become a world power and
was no longer considered just another former British colony. American culture,
such as books, movies, and Broadway theater, was now being exported to the
rest of the world. World War I had left Europe on the decline and America on the
rise. The decade of the 1920s helped to establish America’s position in respect to
the rest of the world, through its industry, its inventions, and its creativity. 6. To what extent did World War I represent a turning point in the history of the
a. World War I represented a turning point in American history through means of
technological advances, being a catalyst for WWII, and through being a world
power after victory in WWI.
■ Technology: The technology used in WWI was never before seen. They
had submarines, airplanes, gas masks, even trench warfare was new.
■ Causing WWII: The end of WWI with the Treaty of Versailles can be
considered a cause of WWII. This is because the Germans, Japanese,
and Italians were all dismantled after the war, at the fault of the Allies. The
Germans were left in distress because they were under the impression
that the treaty was going to have Wilson's 14 points when the reality was
that only a couple ended up in the treaty. Additionally, the end of the war
left Germany completely devastated. They had no economy, the
government was incredibly unstable (this actually is the reason why Hitler
was able to easily gain power. He used propaganda to help gain power
and the people were hopeful with his promises). The Italians were given
any say in helping with the treaty and this left them with little
compensation. They ended up turning fascist and against the Allies. The
Japanese were infuriated because they got kicked out of land and didn't
trust the US and Britain taking control of Pacific islands. This was the
beginning of reasons why the Japanese hated the US and ended up
bombing Pearl Harbor.
■ The United States like never before: It would be the first time the United
States had been acting as a world power. At the end of the war,
Americans didn't really want to be on the world stage and entered a
period of Isolationism that ended up having its contradictions. But
basically, Americans didn't want to be involved greatly in the world and
wanted to keep to themselves during the 20s.
7. To what extent was the New Deal successful in meeting and solving the
challenges of the Great Depression?
a. Although Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal had not completely solved the
entirety of the Great Depression, his attempt to stabilize the economy and
provide jobs and relief to those who were suffering was commendable in solving
other aspects in the Great Depression.
b. In FDR’s first 100 days, he promised relief, recovery, and reformation in his New
Deal by providing acts and administrations that could simulate the country with
these three key points.
● Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation: this Act protected
individual’s money for up to $5000. ● ■ Securities and Exchange Commission: this is created to manage
and investigate fair dealings with Wall Street. Needless to say, the
process of “buying on margin” was eliminated. Relief
● Civilian Conservation Corporation: gave jobs to youths in
construction and environmental protection.
● Federal Emergency Relief Administration: created even more jobs
for the unemployed, including basic maintenance and
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