TOCQUEVILLE - Jaime Fallon Professor Washburn Tocqueville...

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Jaime Fallon Professor Washburn Tocqueville Paper Due: 25 April 2007 Racism Abolished with Slavery? Not Quite The oldest conflict in American history must the issue of racism. Can blacks and whites really live together in harmony, or because of the nature of the beginning of the relations, slavery, will there always be an issue with having peace? Even today, during one of the most progressive times in American history we experience extreme feelings of hostility between blacks and whites. There is hostility in schools, prisons, cities, and neighborhoods. Slavery has been abolished since the 19 th century, why do the two races still continue to resent each other, why can’t there be peace between the two? In his observatory book, Democracy in America , Alexis de Tocqueville discusses the possibility that relations between blacks and whites may never change. Slavery was such a demeaning practice that it may have ruined the chance for the two races to coexist peacefully. In Tocqueville’s initial arguments, he suggests that mankind is constantly working and shifting towards overall equality. His evidence is very supportive of this idea, suggesting that first the church made man equal, then education, then a more equal distribution of wealth throughout the population etc, but this evidence only supports the movement towards equality in socio-economic classes. Racial equality is a completely different issue. Educating freed-slaves, giving them religion and wealth is not going to change the feelings that white Americans may be harboring in their subconscious.
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Tocqueville does not blame the poor relations between blacks and whites solely on the whites. He suggests that there are many opinions and attitudes that the blacks in America may have that keep them in unfavorable positions in relation to the whites. Tocqueville had an incredibly negative opinion of the possibility of blacks and whites living together harmoniously. He witnessed the evils of slavery first hand, but also witnessed the impossible situation the blacks were faced with once they were free. Though in the north and south whites and blacks were obligated to live together,
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This note was uploaded on 04/03/2008 for the course GSP cult2 taught by Professor Washburn during the Spring '07 term at NYU.

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TOCQUEVILLE - Jaime Fallon Professor Washburn Tocqueville...

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