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American Beginnings


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Title: American Beginnings

American Beginnings
  • Wang, Yueh-chiu
  • National Penghu University

  • Here individuals of all nations are melted into
    a new race of men, whose labors and posterity
    will one day cause great changes in the worldThe
    American is a new man, who acts upon new
    principles he must therefore entertain new
    ideas, and form new opinions. This is an

A New Land
  • The American continents were peopled as a result
    of two long-continuing immigration movements, the
    first from Asia, and the second from Europe and

  • The first movement began probably 25,000 years
    ago when Siberian tribes, in search of new
    hunting grounds or of refuge from pursuing
    enemies, crossed over the Bering Strait to

  • The second migration to the American began with
    the explanation of Europe at the start of the
    modern period in the 16th century. In 1492,
    Columbus persuaded the king and queen of Spain to
    finance his voyage. He believed that by sailing
    west from Europe, he could reach the Far East.

  • He never succeeded, instead he landed on one of
    the Bahama Islands in the Caribbean Sea and
    discovered the New World. Based on Columbuss
    discovery, the Spanish king could claim the
    territory in the Americans.

Europe in the 16th and 17th Centuries
  • The permanent English settlements in North
    America began in the 17th century when Western
    Europe was undergoing great changes. During the
    Middle Ages, Europe was under the single
    spiritual authority of the Roman Catholic Church.
    The feudal system of serfdom prevailed. The
    peasants or the serfs were tied to the

  • soil and worked in the fields for their lords.
  • Art and learning were controlled by the Church.
    By the 16th century, some new and powerful social
    forces began to emerge which led to the awakening
    of Europe and the discovery of America.

  • The growth of capitalism produced two new
    classesthe bourgeois class and the working
    class. With the fast development of commerce and
    trade, the bourgeoisie became increasingly
    powerful in politics as well as in economy.

  • The second major force that brought about the
    modern development of Europe was the Renaissance,
    which was marked by a changing outlook on life.
    People began to be more confident in themselves
    and show more interest in the world about them.

  • The third influential force was the Religious
    Reformation, a religious reform movement that
    started from Germany.
  • Against the background of those emerging new
    forces, the 13 English colonies that would become
    the United States of America were planted in
    North America.

The Settlement in Virginia
  • The first permanent English settlement was
    founded in 1607 in Virginia. This was organized
    by the London Company with a charter from the
    English king James I.

Puritan New England
  • New England today includes Massachusetts,
    Conneticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, and
    Rhode Island in the Northeast of the United

  • In 1620, 35 Puritans and 67 non-Puritans took the
    ship Mayflower and left Holland for North
    America. Before they reached their destination,
    one of the Pilgrim Fathers drew up an agreement
    which was called the Mayflower Compact and was
    signed by 41 of the passengers.

  • Puritanism in New England changed gradually due
    to the frontier environment and the mobility of
    the population. As time went on, many of the new
    generations no longer adhered to the orthodox
    Puritanism. Many moved to the West and other
    parts of the United States.

  • Today, Puritans are no longer in existence. But
    their legacies are still felt in American society
    and culture.

  • The Puritans also have left rich cultural
    heritage to future Americans. The American
    values, such as individualism, hard work, and
    respect for education, owe very much to the
    Puritan beliefs.

Catholic Maryland
  • Following the two patterns of early American
    culture in Virginia and New England was the
    pattern in the colony of Maryland founded by the
    Catholics. The founder was the second Lord
    Baltimore. His father, George Calvert, was born
    into an ordinary English family, not from the
    nobility nor from a Catholic background.

  • In 1623, he was granted a charter from the king
    and was allowed to set up a colony in todays
    Maryland. But before he could do so, he died.
    His son, the second Lord Baltimore, carried out
    his fathers will in 1632. He became the owner
    of the colony.

Quaker Pennsylvania
  • The fourth colonial pattern in North America was
    set by William Penn, an English Quaker who had
    been looking for a place for his fellow believers
    to live according to their religious faith. The
    termQuakers was coined by their enemies because
    the Quakers were so faithful to God that when
    they spoke of God, they trembled.

  • Quakers had their own way of life too. They
    lived a simple life, with thrift and self-denial.
    They believed that God required everyone to work
    hard and have a productive life. Even in jail,
    they busily set about working at crafts. Their
    religious beliefs taught them that everyone was
    equal, so they refused to take off their caps to
    nobles when they met them and even refused

  • to bow to the kings. They wore plain clothes
    and used plain language. The Quakers argued that
    religion was a persons private business with
    God, therefore no government should interfere in
    his or her religious beliefs.

  • In accordance with Quakerism, William Penn
    carried out the policy of separation of state and
    church in his colony. Penns holy experiment had
    great impact on American culture. Voltaire
    always held this colony up as a proof that man
    could lead a good life without absolute monarch,
    feudalism, or religious and racial uniformity.

  • Some American founding fathers such as Thomas
    Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were inspired by
    Penns experiment.

The American Revolution
  • By the early 1760s, the 13 English colonies in
    North America had developed a similar American
    pattern in politics, economy, and cultural life
    and enjoyed the same frontier environment.

  • The English people and Europeans had become
    Americans and they were ready to separate
    themselves from the Old World. The American
    Revolution officially proclaimed the birth of a
    new nation of Americans.

  • In May 1775, a second Continental Congress met in
    Philadelphia and began to assume the functions of
    a national government. It founded a Continental
    Army and Navy under the command of George

  • Thomas Jefferson of Virginia, assisted by John
    Adams and Benjamin Franklin, drafted the
    Declaration of Independence, which the Congress
    adopted on July 4, 1776. The Declaration
    officially proclaimed the independence of 13
    North American colonies.

  • It solemnly declared We hold these truths to
    be self-evident, that all men are created equal
    that they were endowed by their Creator with
    certain unalienable rights that among these, are
    life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.

  • Most importantly, it explained the philosophy of
    governments to secure these rights,
    governments are instituted among men, deriving
    their just powers from the consent of the
    governed whenever any form of government
    becomes destructive of these ends, it is

  • the right of people to alter or to abolish it,
    and to institute a new government, laying its
    foundation on such principles, and organizing its
    powers in such form, as to them shall seem most
    likely to effect their safety and happiness.

  • The theory of politics and a guiding principle of
    the American Revolution came from John Locke, an
    English political philosopher in the 17th century.

  • The War of Independence came to an end in 1781
    with the victory of North Americans. The Treaty
    of Paris was signed in 1783 and Britain had to
    recognize the independence of the United States.
    A new American nation was thus born.

American Economy
  • Industrial Revolution
  • The Industrial Revolution changed the ways that
    people worked. Instead of weaving cloth at home,
    people worked in factories where the machinery
    made much more cloth in a short time.

  • The United States that emerged from the American
    Revolution of 1776 was principally an
    agricultural country.

  • Early American industries depended largely on
    skilled artisans working in small shops to serve
    a local market. But the Industrial Revolution
    that started in England during the 18th century
    did not take long to cross the Atlantic. It
    brought many changes to American industry between
    1776 and 1860.

  • Because labor was scarce in the United States and
    wages were high, employers welcomed any new
    method that could reduce the requirement for
    labors. One key development was the introduction
    of the factory system, which gathered many
    workers together in one workplace and produced
    goods for distribution over a wide area.

  • A second development was the American system of
    mass production which originated in the firearms
    industry about 1800. The new system required
    precision engineering to create parts that were

  • Lower costs made possible both higher wages for
    workers and lower prices for consumers. More and
    more Americans were gaining the ability to
    purchase products made in the United States.
    During the first half of the 29th century, mass
    production of consumer goods such as cars,
    refrigerators and kitchen ranges

  • helped to revolutionize the ways in which
    Americans lived.
  • A third development was the application of new
    technologies to industrial tasks. Large water
    wheels and water turbines drove the machinery of
    early factories.

  • The economic activity increased as a result of
    new inventions. Some of the inventions were
    original American ideas others were adapted from
    inventions created elsewhere. The 19th century
    saw the introduction of new farm machinery,
    sewing machines, the telegraph, railroads,
    food-processing plants, the telephone, the
    perfection of the electric light bulb, the

  • the phonograph, the camera, moving pictures, and
    many other devices.
  • A fourth development was the emergence of new
    forms of business organization, notably the bank
    and the corporation, which facilitated the growth
    of industry.

  • Finally, the construction of railroads, beginning
    in the 1830s, marked the start of a new era for
    the United States.

Free Enterprise
  • Most Americans think that the rise of their
    nation as a leading producer of manufactured
    goods, food, and services could not have occurred
    without the economic freedom of capitalismwhich
    many prefer to call free enterprise.

  • The story of American economic growth is a story
    of people inventing new devices and processes,
    starting new businesses, and launching new
    ventures. For each of these endeavors, money is
    needed. That money is known as capital.

  • Immigration and the rapid growth of American
    cities resulted in a large urban population
    seeking to earn a living. Factory owners often
    exploited this situation by offering low wages
    for long working hours, by providing unsafe and
    unhealthy working conditions and by hiring the
    children of poor families.

The Roots of Affluence
  • No single factor is responsible for the successes
    of American business and industry. Bountiful
    resources, the geographical size of the country,
    and population trends have all contributed to
    these successes. Religious, social, and
    political traditions the institutional
    structures of government and business

  • and the courage, hard work, and determination of
    countless entrepreneurs and workers have also
    played a part.
  • The vast dimensions and ample natural resources
    of the United States from the first to be a major
    advantage for national economic development.

  • Rapid growth helped to promote a remarkable
    mobility in the American populationa mobility
    that contributes a useful flexibility to business
    life. Mobility has been not only geographical
    but also social and economic. Lacking the rigid
    social classes of many European nations, the
    early United States provided many

  • Opportunities for advancement, although mainly
    for those who were Caucasian. Racial barriers
    that long blocked advancement for darker-skinned
    peoples, however, have largely disappeared in the
    past three decades. Class structure today is
    quite fluid.

  • The American people have possessed to an unusual
    degree the entrepreneurial spirit that finds its
    outlet in such business activities as
    manufacturing, transporting, buying, and selling.

  • The relative reluctance of American political
    leaders to intervene in economic activities gave
    great freedom to market forces.

American Agriculture
  • From the earliest days, the sight of farmers
    working the land has been at the heart of the
    American experience. Agriculture represents a
    bond of continuity between present and past,
    linking new generations with the rhythms and
    dreams of generations of long ago.

  • From the nations infancy, American leaders have
    extolled the virtues of the hardy,
    self-sufficient farmer as those most worthy of
    emulation by the people as a whole. Please refer
    to p. 52.

  • American farmers have shown a spirit of
    individualism and egalitarianism that the rest of
    society has widely admired.

  • Both American and foreign consumers benefit from
    the American farmers, low-cost output. American
    consumers pay far less for their food than the
    people of many other industrial countries.

  • The standard of living of American farmers is
    generally high. Incomes of farm families average
    about three-quarters of those of nonfarm
    families, but because farm families living
    expenses are lowers, their standard of living is
    close to the national average.

  • The readiness of many farmers to adopt new
    technology has been one of the strengths of
    American agriculture. Computers are but the
    latest in a long line of innovations that have
    helped American farmers to cut costs and improve

  • Though responding to innovation and evolving with
    the passage of time, agriculture remains the
    foundation upon which American well-being and
    prosperity are based. This bond linking past,
    present and future is fundamental to the American
    way of life.

American Literature
  • From the beginning of American history to the
    present day, American literature has recorded the
    story of a quest. At different times the quest
    has taken different forms. In the 16th century
    Europeans come to the New World in search of the
    lost continent of Atlantis.

  • These fantastic dreams changed in time to more
    down-to-earth dreams of success. These dreams
    brought millions of young men and women from
    farms and small towns to cities in the hope of
    winning fame and fortune.

  • In one way or another, however, it has always
    been a pursuit of happiness. American
    literature is the continuous narrative of that

Early Fiction
  • In his accounts of his history of The Alhambra
    (1832), the fabulous palace of the Moors in
    Granada, Spain, Irving also demonstrated that an
    American writer need not write only about America
    in order to remain a patriot.

  • The country was expanding westward, but in the
    older cities of the northeastern statesstill
    referred to as New Englandthe influence of
    early Puritan teachings remained strong.
    However, such authoritarian religious
    organizations inevitably produce dissenters.

  • Emerson claimed that by studying and responding
    to nature individuals could reach a higher
    spiritual state without formal religion. For the
    next several years, Emersons essays made his
    extremely influential, not only upon other
    thinkers and writers, but upon the general
    population as well.

  • In his poetry, Emerson developed a free-form,
    natural style, using symbols and imagery drawn
    from nature. His work had an immense impact on
    other poets of the time.

  • Transcendentalists are based on their acceptance
    of Emersons theories about spiritual
    transcendence. One of Emersons most gifted
    fellow-thinkers was Henry David Thoreau

  • Thoreau was passionate about individuals
    learning to think for themselves and being
    independent, both traditional American values.

  • In Walden, many of its statements about the
    individuals role in societysimply put, that the
    dictates of an individuals conscience should
    take precedence over the demands, even the laws,
    of societysound radical even today.

Power of Imagination
  • While these new England intellectuals presented
    perspectives of literature and life, other
    writers were concentrating upon human imagination
    and emotion rather than the intellect. Edgar
    Allan Poe and Nathaniel Hawthorne were the
    symbols of imagination writers.

New Visions of America
  • Poe, Hawthorne, and Melville all struggled to
    find their individual voices, and through them
    American literature began to acquire its own

  • One more figure emerged in the 1850s to assert a
    truly American voice, one that celebrated the
    American landscape, the American people, their
    speech, and democratic form of government.

(No Transcript)
  • Like Melville in Moby Dick, Whitman ventured
    beyond traditional forms to meet his need for
    more space to express the American spirit.
    Whitman dwelt on himself simply because he saw
    himself as a prototype of The American.

Reform and Liberation
  • New intellectuals had, in fact, a tradition of
    involvement in liberal reform. In the 1850s,
    this took the form of a movement to end the
    institution of slavery, which by that time was
    practiced chiefly in the southern states.

  • Harriet Beecher Stowes Uncle Toms Cabin was an
    antislavery novel that galvanized political
    opinion across the nation. Sentimental and
    melodramatic as it was, this novel portrayed
    black slaves as sympathetic, suffering figures,
    and created an image of the cruel slaveowner in
    the character of Simon Legree.

  • One of the most important leaders of this
    regionalism movement was William Dean Howells,
    who in 1866 became editor of the influential
    Atlantic magazine. Howells published stories
    from all over the United States, and in his
    literary reviews he praised writers who described
    local life

  • realistically.
  • Mark Twain was the first major American writer to
    be born away from the East Coast. Twain was a
    new voice, an original genius, a man of the
    people, and he quickly won readers. He captured
    a peculiarly American sense of humor, telling
    outrageous jokes and tall tales in a

  • calm, innocent, matter-of-fact manner.
  • Twain had a synical streak that matched the
    countrys skeptical post-Civil War blood.

  • Emily Dickinsons poetry mixed gaiety and gloom.
    Her verses are filled with the names of faraway,
    exotic places that she visited only in

A New Wave
  • As the wounds of the Civil War slowly healed,
    many Americans became discontented with the
    growing materialism of society in the United
    States. Henry James, an American who lived in
    Europe, examined American society by observing
    the divergence between American and European
    culture in novels like The American and the
    Portrait of a Lady.

  • James people were trapped in their environment,
    struggling to find happiness. James interest
    was psychological rather than social, however.
    Recording the most minute details of perception,
    he drew his readers close to his characters
    mental and emotional processes. His writing
    style became increasingly complex, but this
    focused attention away from action and

  • Setting and onto what the characters were

Sympathetic Views
  • Three other women, in different parts of the
    country, were also writing sympathetic
    psychological studies.

  • American literature entered the 20th century not
    as optimistic or patriotic as it had been a
    century earlier, yet full of democratic spirit.
    Black Americans were just beginning to make their
    mark in literature in the wake of the Civil Wars
    having freed them from slavery.

Rebellious Spirit
  • In the first decades of the 20th century the
    United States became increasingly urban. Two
    major works of literature expressed this new
    attitude of rebellion against the limited life of
    the typical small American town.

  • To urban Americans and Europeans both, Lewis
    seemed to sum up what small-town America was all
    about. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for
    Literature in 1930, the first American to be so

The Modernists
  • One important literary movement of the time was
    Imagism, whose poets focused on strong,
    concrete images. Ezra Pound began as an Imagist
    but soon went beyond, into complex, sometimes
    obscure poetry, full of references to other art
    forms and to vast range of literature.

  • Living in Europe, Pound influenced many other
    poets, especially T.S. Eliot. He wrote spare,
    intellectual poetry, carried by a dense structure
    of symbols.

Lost Generation
  • In the aftermath of World War I many novelists
    produced a literature of disillusionment. Some
    lived abroad and were known as the Lost
    Generation. F. Scott Fitzgeralds novels
    captured the restless, pleasure-hungry, defiant
    mood of the 1920s. Fitzgeralds great theme,
    expressed poignantly in The Great Gatsby, was of
    youths gold dreams turning to disappointment.
    His prose was exquisite, yet

  • Vision was essentially melancholy and nostalgic.
  • War had also affected Earnest Hemingway. Having
    seen violence and death close at hand, Hemingway
    adopted a moral code exalting simple survival and
    the basic values of strength, courage, and

Harlem Renaissance
  • The 1920s also saw the rise of an artistic black
    community centered in New York City in Harlem, a
    fashionable black neighborhood.
    African-Americans had brought a lively, powerful
    music called jazz with them as they moved to
    northern cities the jazz clubs of Harlem became
    chic night spots in the 1920s.

  • The Harlem Renaissance gave African-American
    prominence and an impetus to grow.

New Drama
  • There were another burst of intense literary
    activity in the 1920s in drama. Although the
    premiere theater town was the large eastern city
    of New York, most cities had their own theaters.
    Professional actors toured the United States,
    performing British classics, musical reviews or
    second-rate melodramas.

  • ONeill borrowed ideas from European playwrights.
    Like the Modernists, he used symbolism, adapted
    stories from classical mythology and the Bible,
    and drew upon the new science of psychology to
    explore his characters inner lives. What made
    ONeill unique was his incorporation of all these
    elements into a new American voice and dramatic

Depression Realism and Escapism
  • The Depression caused novelists to focus on
    social forces. In the West, John Steinbeck told
    sympathetic stories about drifting farm laborers
    and factory workers.
  • By interweaving chapters of social commentary
    with his story, Steinbeck made this portrait of
    the Joad family into a major statement about the

  • Historical fiction became increasingly popular in
    the Depression, for it allowed readers to retreat
    to the past.

Postwar Voices and the Beat Generation
  • The new receptivity of American society to a
    diversity of voices incorporated black writers
    and black protest into the mainstream of American

  • The San Francisco writers were part of a large
    group called the Beat Generation, a name that
    referred simultaneously to the rhythm of jazz
    music, to their sense that society was worn out,
    and to their interest in new forms of experience,
    through drus, alcohol, or Eastern mysticism.

New American Voices
  • The feminist movement of the 1960s and 1970s
    fueled creative energies for many women writers.
    Some poets, with their personal poetry, revealed
    the pain and joy of being a woman. As the
    womens movement gained more acceptance, however,
    women wrote less in protest and more in

Education in the United States
  • Going to school in America today Each fall
    almost 50 million young Americans walk through
    the doorways of about 100,000 elementary and
    secondary schools for the start of a new school
    year. Filling classrooms from kindergarten to
    the 12th grade, they attend classes for an
    average of five hours a day, five days a week,
    until the beginning of the following summer.

  • These students are part of one of the most
    ambitious undertakings in the history of
    education the American effort to educate an
    entire national population. The goal isand have
    been since the early decades of the republic to
    achieve universal literacy and to provide
    individuals with the knowledge and skills

  • necessary to promote both their own individual
    welfare as well as that of the general public.
    Though this goal has not yet been fully achieved,
    it remains an ideal towards which the American
    educational system is directed. The progress
    which has been made is notable both for its scope
    and for the educational methods

  • which has been developed in the process of
    achieving it.

Educationa local matter
  • From Hawaii to Delaware, from Alaska to
    Louisiana, each of the 50 states in the United
    States has its own laws regulating education.
    From state to state, some laws are similar
    others are not.

  • Americans have a strong tendency to educate their
    children about major public concernsproblems
    such as environmental pollution, nuclear issues,
    neighborhood crime, and drugs.

What an American Student Learns
  • American students pass through several levels of
    schoolingand thus, several curriculaon their
    way to a high school diploma.

  • Almost every elementary school provides
    instruction in these subjects mathematics
    language arts, penmanship science social
    studies music art and physical education.

Education in a New Nation
  • Americans trace the origins of their nation to
    the English colonists (settlers) who came to the
    eastern coast of North America in the early 17th
    century. The largest group of these first
    colonists, the Puritans, founded the
    Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1630.

  • The Puritans sought the freedom to practice their
    religiona freedom they could not enjoy in their
    native country. They found this freedom in the
    small towns and villages they built on the edge
    of the forest in Massachusetts.

  • One of the things the Puritans believed was that
    every person should be able to read the Bible.
    One hundred percent literacy seemed like a dream
    in the 17th century.

  • Throughout the colonies, young men and women
    could receive an education in reading by becoming
    an apprentice in a small business. It had been a
    practice in England to have young boys and girls
    live with the families of those for whom they

  • In return for a youths work, the business owner
    promised to teach him or her to read, as well as
    how to do a craft. This practice was brought to
    North America.

  • The new United States was to be a federal
    republica union of states with a strong central
    government representing all the people.

Learning to be World Citizens
  • After 1920, the K to 12 education in America
    remained very much the same until World War II.
    That tragic event introduced changes that
    affected every institution in Americaincluding
    the schools. American parentsespecially young
    couples who married in the late 1940swanted
    their children to be educated for the post-war

  • Schools were asked not only to teach this new
    information, but also to help students ask their
    own questions about it. The inquiry method of
    learning, focusing on solving problems rather
    than memorizing facts, became popular.

  • By the early 1980s, the federal government was
    spending about 8 to 10 billion dollars annually
    on elementary and secondary education.

  • But a good secondary education was no longer
    enough for many Americans. In one school
    district after another, parents insisted on high
    school programs that would prepare their sons and
    daughters for admission to a university.

  • More and more Americans viewed the university as
    the doorway to a medical or law degree, a
    position in government, or a management position
    in a major business office.

Higher Education
  • Simply by being admitted into one of the most
    respected universities in the United States, a
    high school graduate achieve a degree of success.
    A leading university might receive application
    from 2 of these high school graduates, and then
    accept only one out of every ten who apply.

  • The system of higher education in the United
    States is complex. It comprises four categories
    of institutions (1) the university, which may
    contain (a) several major departments for
    undergraduate students seeking a bachelors
    degree and (b) one or more graduate schools for
    those continuing in specializing studies beyond
    the bachelors degree to obtain

  • a masters or a doctors degree.
  • Any of these institutions, in any category, might
    be either public or private, depending on the
    source of its funding.

  • Many universities and colleges, both public and
    private, have gained reputations for offering
    particularly challenging courses and for
    providing their students with a higher quality of
    education. The great majority are generally
    regarded as quite satisfactory.

  • In the United States it is generally recognized
    that there are more and less desirable
    institutions in which to study and from which to

Selecting a College or University
  • In addition to learning about a schools entrance
    requirements (and its fees), Americans have a lot
    of questions to think about when they choose a
    university or college. They need to know What
    degree does the school offer? How long does it
    take to earn one?

  • What curricular does a college or university
    offer? What are the requirements for earning a
    degree? In an American university, each
    department and graduate school has its own

  • Typically, an undergraduate students has to earn
    a certain number of credits in order to receive a
    degree at the end of four years of college.

  • About 25 percent of all schools of higher
    education in the United States are privately
    operated by religious organizations. Most are
    open to students of different faiths, but in some
    religious school students are required to attend
    religious services. There are also privately
    owned school with no religious connection.

  • Both public and private colleges depended on
    three sources of income student tuition,
    endowments, and government funding.

Trends in Degree Programs
  • During the 1970s and 1980s, there was a trend
    away from the traditional liberal arts. Instead,
    students were choosing major fields that would
    prepare them for specific jobs.
  • In many ways, this new popularity of liberal arts
    is a return to the early tradition of American

Education for All
  • As with most (but not all) problems in American
    public life, the conflict was resolved by change
    and compromise. Colleges continued to serve the
    goal of affirmative actionbut in less
    controversial ways. One large university, for
    example, announced a new policy It would seek to
    admit students who would ad diverse talents to
    student body.

  • What success did these efforts have? American
    college students are an increasingly diverse
    group. In 1987, 54 were women. Women received
    51 of the bachelors and masters degrees
    awarded that year, and 35 of the doctorates and
    professional degrees.

Social Movements of the 1960s
  • Background and Definition
  • This quiet sit-in by black students in
    Greensboro began the civil rights movement in the
    1960s, the first of several social movements
    during that decade.

  • The civil rights movement, and the youth
    anti-war, and the womens liberation movements
    which followed, had long roots in United States
    history. However, many people who worked in the
    1960s movements believed they were creating
    something new and exciting which would make deep
    changes in American society.

Why did the Social Movements begin?
  • During the fifteen years between the end of World
    War II and the 1960s, many American men worked
    hard to achieve their dreams. The federal
    government subsidized education and home
    ownership for veterans of World War II and the
    Korean War. They remembered the hard times of
    the depression of the 1930s and believed they
    could protect their families

  • by working hard for long hours. Many of them
    encouraged their wives to stay in their
    middle-class homes in the suburbs, raising their
    three or four children. They believed they were
    living the American Dream.

Who worked in the Social Movements?
  • Many people who believed the government and the
    society were wrong joined one or more of the
    social movements. Black and white young people
    worked in all the movements, as did many
    middle-class white women and some men.

  • Those who worked in the civil rights movement
    included older, usually male, Negro leaders
    black and white young people, some white
    professional men and women, and some white

  • Not only did some of the same people worked in
    several movements, but the movements also used
    many of the same strategies and tactics, and
    songs. When the civil rights movement began,
    nonviolent, direct action tactics like sit-ins
    and boycotts were used to protest segregation

What is a Social Movement?
  • There are many definitions of social movement.
    One professor argues that a social movement is
    a type of behavior in which a large number of
    participants consciously attempt to change
    existing institutions and establish a new order
    of life. In other words, people work together
    to change government policies and society.

The Civil rights Movement
  • Segregation laws in Southern states in the US
    prevented black and white people from sitting
    together in movie theaters, easting in the same
    restaurants, drinking from the same water
    fountain, using the same washrooms or riding
    together on buses on trains. Black and white
    children could not go to the same schools, and
    most Negroes

  • were not allowed to vote. Although these
    segregation laws were illegal under the 14th
    Amendment to the United States Constitution, the
    US government would not declare the Southern laws
    unconstitutional until there were cases brought
    in federal courts.

  • One reason that the sit-ins in Greenboro were
    successful was that black students had formed a
    new organization, the Student Nonviolent
    Coordinating Committee (SNCC).

Direct Action Tactics
  • The next important direct action of the three
    civil rights organizations was voter
    registration. Voting laws in southern states
    tried to prevent Negroes from voting.

  • In January 1965, President Johnson began his war
    on poverty. As racial violence continued, black
    people began to question the nonviolent tactics
    used in the South, and black leaders in other
    parts of the country spoke in favor of black
    separation and against nonviolence in fighting
    discrimination and racism.

The Youth Movement/Anti-war Movement
  • As the youth movement spread outside the
    campuses, some young people formed a
    counter-culture. They rejected capitalism and
    other American principles. They had morals that
    were different from those taught by their
    parents. The Hippies called themselves the
    love generation.

  • Happiness became their only goal in life. Their
    music was different from any other music, and the
    words they sang sounded rebellious to older

Social Problems in the United States
  • Racial problems
  • Unlike most other people, Americans are primarily
    a nation of immigrants. The citizens or their
    ancestors immigrated from many parts of the
    globesome as refugees from religious and
    political persecution, some as adventurers from
    the Old World seeking a better life, some as

  • Captives brought to America against their own
    will to be sold into slavery. Though people all
    share a common American culture, the nation
    contains many racial and ethnic subcultures with
    their own distinctive characteristics.

  • The United States was founded on the principle of
    human equality, but in practice the nation has
    fallen far short of that ideal. American society
    is a stratified one, in which power, wealth, and
    prestige are unequally distributed among the
    population. This inequality is not simply a

  • matter of distinctions between social classes it
    tends to follow racial and ethnic lines as well,
    with the result that class divisions often
    parallel racial divisions. The first settlers
    from Anglo-Saxon northern Europe quickly took
    control of economic assets and political power in
    the United States. And they have maintained this
    control, to a greater or lesser degree,

  • ever since.
  • These racial and ethnic minorities mainly refer
    to the blacks, Native Americans or American
    Indians, the Hispanics, and Asian Americans. The
    social and economic conditions of Native
    Americans are probably worse than those of any
    other minority group.

  • Race relations between black and white still
    leave much to be desired, although there is
    unmistakable evidence of some improvements in
    attitudes. However, there is a sharp divergence
    between the races on the question of how much
    progress has been made in ending discrimination.

  • By many standards the United States is the most
    fabulously wealthy society in history. Yet over
    24 million people, more than 1 American in 10,
    are living at or below the official poverty line,
    on incomes that the federal government considers
    insufficient to meet basic requirement of food,
    clothing, and shelter. These people are not the
    only poor in the United States

  • There are millions more, living slightly above
    the poverty line, whole plight is not much
    better. Poverty can mean low self-esteem,
    despair, and stunting of human potential.

  • The problem of poverty in the United States is
    aggravated because it occurs in a society in
    which the overall distribution of wealth and
    income is very unequal.

  • The distribution of income in the United States
    follows a similar pattern. The richest fifth of
    American families receives over 40 of the
    national income, whereas the poorest fifth
    receives only 5.2. This pattern has remained
    virtually unchanged at least since World War II.

  • The continued existence of poverty in a generally
    affluent American society raises serious moral
    questionsand inevitably creates fierce conflicts
    of interest and many political controversies.

Drug Abuse
  • Drug abuse in the United States has come to be
    regarded as one of the most challenging social
    problems facing the nation. Indeed, the very
    word drug excites strong emotions, and opinion
    polls since the late 1960s have shown that the
    drug problem is perceived by most Americans as
    a major threat to our society, particularly to
    its younger members.

  • Drug abuse in the United States is a social
    problem because it has a wide range of social
    costs, or dysfunctionssome obvious and
    measurable, some hidden and difficult to quantify.

  • Crime There is a strong association between some
    forms of drug use and crime. The use of alcohol
    is highly correlated with violent crime.

  • Automobile accidents Alcohol use is directly
    responsible for tens of thousands of highway
    accidents and injuries the drug is blamed for
    half of the annual total of road traffic

  • Economic losses the cost of alcohol abuse alone
    totals over 43 billion a year in accidents,
    medical bill, lost production, and so on. One
    reason is that there are many indirect costs
    society must pay to support drug-dependent
    persons. Treatment and control of drug abuse
    constitute a major drain on law-enforcement and
    other public resources.

  • Crime is one of the most serious social problems
    facing the nation.
  • It is general agreed that serious, violent crime
    has reached alarming proportions in the United

  • In summary, the Serious Crime Index of the FBI
    provides an indication of the rates and trends of
    certain crimes in the United States.

The Abuse of Power by Government and Corporations
  • A crucial problem of government and corporations
    concerns powerand the abuse of it. American
    lives are dominated by large public and private
    organizations. The public organizations affects
    almost every area of their experience.

  • The private organizations provide jobs for the
    bulk of the population and supply most of
    consumer needs, from banking and television
    services to clothing and gasoline. American lives
    and their entire complex civilization are largely
    dependent on big organizations.

Scenic America
  • The setting sun turns the western sky crimson
    red, lining higher clouds with golden borders. A
    dark shadow crawls slowly up the sides of the
    canyon ahead, first blotting out the tiny silver
    thread of the Colorado River 15,000 meters below.

  • This scenic area is one of the U.S. National
    Parks, hence there are guides, Park Rangers,
    available for information in addition to small
    exhibition buildings where experts inform
    visitors about the geology, the flora and the
    fauna, and the history of the area.

The Southwest
  • There are other scenic spots nearby. To the
    east, the Painted Desert includes multicolored
    hills and small uprisings from the desert floor
    (buttes) that glow in the daylight in colors of
    reddish-brown, yellow, orange, and even purple.

  • Moving north from Grand Canyon National Park, one
    encounters many scenic areas that not in parks.
    The desert areas of Nevada and the mountains and
    steams of southwestern Colorada are all quite

The North west
  • To the far north, near the Canadian border is
    Yellowstone National Park, named after the river
    flowing through the area. Yellowstone was
    established in 1872, and is the oldest of the
    national parks and also one of the largest in

The Rock Mountains
  • All of the places mentioned so far are to the
    west of the Rocky mountains, which are themselves
    worth touring.

The Pacific Coast
  • To the west of the Rocky Mountains, towards the
    Pacific coast, there is in the south of a stretch
    of desert area that suddenly becomes verdant in
    the Imperial Valley of California.

  • There are few places of natural beauty in
    Southern California. Most of the interest lies
    in human creations such Hollywood and Disneyland.

The Middle West
  • The Rock Mountains slide down easterly towards
    the great Plains states, flat lands where grain
    fields extend for miles in either direction. In
    the north part of this region, in the state of
    South Dakota, is the unusual artistic project at
    Mt. Rushmore, there enormous portait of four
    famous U.S. Presidents.

  • At southernmost tip of the eastern United States
    is the state of Florida. Here the climate is
    mild all year, so when the weather is harsh and
    severe in the north, many people, especially
    older folks, visit Florida.

The Southwest
  • These states have the unusual property of having
    a cost line filled with beaches and fishing
    vessels to their east, and hills and mountains
    for hunting, camping, and freshwater fishing to
    their west.

The Northeast
  • The Blue Ridge Mountains extend up through North
    Carolina to Virginia, but most visitors prefer to
    visit the Eastern seaboard to enjoy the Outer
    Banks, where deep sea fishing is a major

New York State
  • The Adrindack Mountains, located mainly in the
    state of New York, contain some of the oldest
    rocks in the world. Mount March at 1, 629 m , is
    the tallest peak, but Whiteface Mountain is more

Urban Scenes
  • During this brief visit to some of the scenic
    places in America, we have not had the chance to
    mention the different and distinctive urban
    centers that stretches from San Diego to Boston,
    from Seattle to Miami.

Sports in America
  • American professional football is played during
    the summer, the fall, and the winter until late
    in January. All this culminate in the Super Bowl
    to decide the champion team for the year.

  • Professional sports in America is entertainment,
    especially football. Spectators are as much
    interested in eating and drinking as they are in
    the game itself. It is a time to party. And a
    time to advertise products for consumption.

  • Professional football used to be a minor activity
    on the American scene. Because games were played
    only once a week, a football stadium had to
    accommodate many paying customers, so they were
    quite large. The largest stadium today is the
    Pontinac Siverdome in Michigan with a capacity of
    a little over 80,000 seats.

  • Interest in professional football suddenly
    increased with the advent of color television.
    It had to be color television and not the simple
    black-and-white sort, because without viewing
    colors, the players on opposing teams could not
    easily be distinguished, making it quite
    difficult to follow the game.

  • IN addition to professional football, most
    colleges and universities have a varsity football
    team, with additional personnel in a marching
    band and a squad of cheerleaders, whose task is
    to lead the spectators in cheering for their team.

How game is played?
  • The ball may be carried by a runner, or it may be
    thrown forward down the field to another player.
    There are four quarters of playing time lasting
    15 minutes for each quarter. At the end of an
    hour of playing, the team with the most points

  • Baseball may still be the great American game,
    even though many other countries are deeply, for
    instance, in Japan, in Cuba, and in the Dominican

  • The less intense activity on the playing field
    also means that spectators can watch the game in
    a more relaxed and lazy way, an ideal way to
    fritter away a hot summer afternoon. Beer and
    soft drinks are available in addition to such
    snacks as peanuts, popcorns.

  • The baseball season now begins with Spring
    Training in February at places such as Florida
    and Arizona, where the weather is mild at that
    time of year.

How the Game is Played
  • Baseball is one of the few team sports that is
    not controlled by a clock the location of the
    ball determines the play of the game. The
    pitcher of the defensive team throws the ball
    toward the home a plate at a speed often at bat,
    attempts to hit the baseball somewhere in fair
    territory outlined by the lines running to the
    right over first base and to the left over third

  • Basketball was deliberately created in 1891 by a
    physical educaiton teacher in Massachusetts,
    Canadian-born James Naismith, to provide an
    indoor sports activity during the snowy winter
    months when outdoor playing fields could not be

How the game is played?
  • A football court can vary slightly in dimensions,
    but they are all approximately 26 m long and 15 m
    wide. Professional courts tend to be a little
    longer. At each end a basket is fixed to a board
    about 3.1 m from the floor. Back boards are now
    made of transparent material so that spectators
    behind the basket can see the game.

Other Sport Activities
  • American are avid sports fans. One sport that
    has been gaining in popularity is ice hockey,
    first played in Canada and states bordering that
    country. Yet it has spread throughout the United
    States with professional teams in the warm states
    of Florida and California. It is also popular as
    a collegiate sport. P. 221

Early American Jazz
  • The whole world is familiar with American jazz
    music. Musicians and performers have
    appreciative fans in nearly every country. The
    newest songs are heard everywhere, and live
    performances are well attended. Yet many are not
    familiar with the early forms of jazz, a uniquely
    American contribution to the arts.

  • The individual style of jazz musicians is worth
    special comment. Violinists in an orchestra are
    interchangeable. One trumpet in a classical
    orchestra plays like every other there is no
    distinctive tone or texture that separates
    clarinet players.

  • Perhaps this identification of the individual
    player appeals to those American values that
    stress the importance of the distinctive and
    different individual.

Early New Orleans Jazz
  • At the end of the nineteenth century in America,
    folk music could be found in every state and
    territory. Yet it was in New Orleans that a new
    blend of folk music, work chants, spirituals,
    marches, and even European classical music,
    blended together in the form known as jazz.

  • A definitive mark of this early New Orleans jazz
    was ensemble of musicians improvising their notes
    in changing chords around a specific melodic

  • The percussion section was behind the front line,
    and set the rhythm. Early jazz was also
    identified by its polyrhythmic structure, a clear
    contribution from the complex drumming of West
    Africa brought over to America by black slaves.

  • Much of the appeal of jazz of jazz comes from
    these complex rhythmic devices. People from all
    cultures sway back and forth, or tap their feet,
    or clap their hands in time with jazz. It has a
    universal effect it speaks to everyone.

  • Another percussion instrument was the banjo, a
    common folk music instrument. The chords
    strummed on this instrument provided a general
    background for the other instruments as well as
    serving the rhythm section. Guitars were also
    found with, or instead of, a banjo.

  • Jazz bands played dance music as well as marches
    and ragtime music. They also played cakewalks,
    a type of strutting dance, and blues, derived
    from a blend of field chantey and spiritual.

  • The music of the blues has a peculiar, poignant
    sadness, which is mainly the effect of a
    flattened seventh note in the scale.
    Furthermore, the lyrics of many blues pieces are
    sardonic, filled with wry, self-depreciating

  • One other major source of this distinctively
    American type of music is European classical
    music operas, chamber music, and formal dances
    such as the quadrille.

  • Music was an important ingredient in the lives of
    Americans, black or white, at the end of the
    nineteenth century. From formal concerts and
    balls, where formal dances occurred, to weddings,
    funerals, and holiday fairs, music was an
    important part of everyones life.

Jazz in Chicago and New York in the 1920s
  • Jazz did establish a foothold in California, but
    it flourished in Chicago and New York. In the
    early 1920s, Chicago emerged as the creative
    center for jazz. While New York had its
    musicians, especially in the predominantly
    African American district called Harlem, it was
    still the south Side of Chicago that was the most
    active and creative jazz venue.

  • In Chicago, the music was played at a faster
    tempo than was usually the case with New Orleans
    style jazz.

The Piano
  • Piano music had its own history. Primarily
    employed in taverns and houses of pleasure, the
    piano was used for sounding out melodies in
    addition to establishing a rhythm. A special
    style of music called ragtime was particularly
    well suited for a solo piano.

  • Originally based on tunes for marching bands,
    ragtime music is marked by a syncopated melodic
    line with a regularly accented bass.

  • Ragtime piano and jazz together in the first
    decade of the century. In New York however a
    new, distinctive style of piano playing called
    stride piano emerged in Harlem, the most
    notable proponent of this style being James P.

The County and Its People
  • In size, Canada is the second largest country on
    earth. In terms of economic power, it is the
    member of the Big Seven, the world leading
    industrial nations. Canada plays an active role
    in international affairs, often taking part in
    peacekeeping and humanitarian missions and
    spearheading aid and development

  • Programs. It scenery of mountains, oceans,
    forests, and prairies is spectacular. It has a
    lively and rich culture, with many world famous
    actors, pop stars, and writers.

  • Harlem at this time was a breeding ground for
    many jazz musicians who earned fame later in the

Boogie Woogie
  • Another piano style was emerging in Chicago in
    the late 1920s and early 1930s. Pianists
    drifting into Chicago from the midwest were
    playing blues pieces with a distinctive, rock
    bass figure.

  • Jazz developments after World War II until the
    end of the 20th century, a period of over 50
    years, are another, even more complex story to

The Canada Economy
  • Canada is a leading industrial nation with a
    highly developed economy. The economy is
    influenced greatly by Canadas physical
    geography, which is rich in natural resources
    but the huge size and small population of the
    country has made extracting and transporting
    goods to markets difficult.

  • The second major influence, as a result, is the
    United States, which has a much more powerful
    economy and a larger market. Given that most
    Canadians live close to the border, trade has
    quite naturally developed north to south, across
    the Can-Am border, rather than east-west, between
    provinces and regions. This accounts for a third
    influence on the eco
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