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The United States of America


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Title: The United States of America

The United States of America
What is an American?
  • He is either a European, or the descendant of a
    European, hence that strange mixture of blood,
    which you will find in no other country.

  • He is an American, who leaving behind him all his
    ancient prejudices and manners, receives new ones
    from the new mode of life he has embraced, the
    new government he obeys, and the new rank he

  • II. A new land and Europe in the 16th and 17th
  • 1. The two long-continuing immigration movements

  • The first movement from Asia began probably
    25,000 years ago when Siberian tribes crossed
    over the Berling Straits to Alaska. By 1492, over
    10-20 million people, mistakenly called Indians
    by Cristopher Columbus, inhabited the Americas.

  • The second migration to the Americas began with
    the expansion of europe at the start of the
    modern period from the 16th century.

  • 2. The forces which led to the modern development
    of Europe and the discovery of America

  • The first force was the development of
    capitalism, which produced two new classes ---
    the bourgeois class and the working class.

  • The second force was the Renaissance, which was
    marked by a changing outlook on life.The
    God-centered world was challenged by the great
    progress in natural and social science.

  • The third force was the Religious Reformation, a
    religious reform movement that started from
    Germany in 1517, the leading figures of which
    were Martin Luther, a German and John Calvin, a

  • 3. The different beliefs of religious

  • 1) Martin Luther believed that sinful men could
    win salvation neither by good works nor through
    the church or the Pope, but only by faith in
    Jesus Christ and through a direct relationship to
    God. And the only true guide to the will of God
    was the Bible.

  • 2) A group of puritans who followed the Doctrine
    preached by John Calvin believed that God was
    incomprehensible to man, and the power of God was

  • that evryone must work hard and live a moral
    life, for ones success in his profession/calling
    was the sign of being Gods elect

  • and that the Bible was the authority of their
    doctrine, so every Puritan must read the Bible in
    order to find Gods will and search for ones
    individual contact with God. ( individualism

  • 3) Catholics believed that God could be reached
    through his representative on the earth --- the
    Pope that a person could confess his or her sin,
    do good works and give money to the church and
    buy back his or her soul.(indulgences remission)

  • III. Four patterns set by the early colonial
  • 1. The settlement in Virginia

  • The first English settlement, Jamestown, was
    founded in 1607 in Virginia, which was organized
    by the London Company with a charter from the
    English King James I.

  • On July 30, 1619, in the Jamestown church, the
    delegates elected from various communities in
    Virginia met as the House of Burgesses to discuss
    the enactment of laws for the colony.

  • A month later, a Dutch ship brought in over 20
    Negros to be held as servants for a term of
    years. Thus a start had been made toward the
    enslavement of Africans within what was to be the
    American republic.

  • These two events combined constituted a unique
    American phenomenon. On the one hand, the English
    and other Europeans went to the New World to seek
    freedom on the other hand, these very white
    people deprived black Africans of freedom.

  • 2. Puritan New England
  • 1) The second enduring English settlement was
    established in Massachusetts Bay in 1620, which
    was founded by English puritans who separated
    themselves from the Church of England.

  • 2) New England today includes Massachusetts,
    Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine and
    rhode Island in the Northeast of the US.

  • 3) Puritans were cruelly persecuted in Britain.
    Some of them, such as Oliver Cromwell, fought
    back and started the English Revolution. Others
    decided to separate themselves from the Church of
    England. Holland ---America

  • 4) In 1620, 35 Puritans and 67 non-Puritans took
    the ship Mayflower and left London for North
    America. One of the Pilgrim Fathers drew up an
    agreement called the Mayflower Compact and signed
    by 41 of the passengers.

  • 5) Puritanism in New England changed gradually
    due to the frontier environment and the mobility
    of the population. Puritanism are no longer in
    existence today, but their legacies are still
    felt in American society and culture

  • 6) The American values such as individualism,
    hard work, respect of education owe very much to
    the Puritan beliefs.

  • 3. Catholic Maryland
  • 1) The colony of Maryland was founded by the
    Catholics, and its founder was the second Lord

  • 2) Lord Baltimore wished to introduce a feudal
    system similar to the manor system in Europe to
    his colony. His plan was that each gentleman who
    brought 5 servants with him settled in his land
    was allowed to establish a manor of 2000acres.

  • 3) In order to develop his colony, Baltimore had
    to attract as many settlers as possible to his
    land. So he encouraged the immigration of
    Protestants as well as Roman Cotholics.

  • 4)Because the majority of Protestants were
    capitalistic-minded and they refused to carry out
    the feudal plan, and because the wilderness of
    North America provided plenty of land while labor
    was scarce, Lord Baltimores feudal plan was

  • 4. Quaker Pensylvania
  • 1) The colony of Pennsylvinia was founded by
    William Penn, an Englsih Quaker in 1681.

  • Quakers were protestants, they denied both the
    church and the Bible as the highest authority.

  • Since everyone had a divine light in his heart,
    all were born equal, and all were brothers and
    sisters.They lived a simple life, with thrifty
    and self-denial.

  • 2) The first appeal of his plan was that all
    those who settled in his land would enjoy
    religious freedom. This was a great attraction to
    people with different religious backgrounds in

  • 3) Penn carried out his Holy Experiment. From
    his belief that man was not born sinful and
    everyone was born equal, he encouraged the spirit
    of liberty and equlity.

  • So many American historians believe that the idea
    of the melting-pot was first practised here. (
    The term came from a stage play in 1908)

  • 4) Penn carried out the policy of separation of
    state and church in his colony, since the Quakers
    argued that religion was a persons private
    business with God. Penns holy experiment had
    great impact on American culture.

  • IV.The American Revolution
  • 1. On the eve of the American Revolution, while
    the 13 English colonies occupied the Atlantic
    coast, from New Hampshire in the north to Georgia
    in the south, the French controlled Canada and

  • 2. Between 1689 and 1815, France and Britain
    fought several wars, and North America was drawn
    into every one of them.

  • 3. Britains victory led directly to a conflict
    with its American colonies. The British
    government began to charge new taxes, such as th
    Stamp Act, the Quartering Act.

  • 4.The colonial Americans insisted that they could
    be taxed only by their own colonial assemblies.
    No taxation without representation was their
    rallying cry.

  • 5. In 1773, the Boston Tea Party boarded the
    British merchant ship and tossed 342 crates of
    tea into Boston harbor.

  • 6. In September 1774, the First Continental
    Congress met in Philadelphia.
  • 7. On April 19, 1775, the first shot was fired,
    and the American War of Independence began.

  • 8. In May 1775, a second Continental Congress met
    in Philadelphia and began to assume the functions
    of a national government.

  • 9. On July 4, 1776, Declaration of Independence,
    drafted by Thomas Jefferson, John Adoms and
    Benjamin Franklin, was adopted by the Congress.

  • 10.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 US.

Part Two The Political System in the US
  • I. Articles of Confederation
  • 1. When the War of Independence was over, the US
    was not a unified nation, for each state made its
    own laws and handled its own internal affairs.

  • The 13 states need to work together to handle
    such matters as establishing a money system and
    dealing with foreign relations.

  • 2. The Articles of Confederation failed because
    the states did not cooperate with the Congress or
    with each other.

  • II. Constitution
  • 1. In the course of the Constitutional
    Convention beginning in May of 1787, delegates
    from 12 states (except Rhode Island) made a plan
    for a new form of government.

  • 2. The Constitution set up a federal system with
    a strong central government, which means power is
    shared between a central authority and its
    constituent parts, with some rights reserved to

  • 3. The government consists of three branches the
    executive, the legislative, and the judicial.
    This is to guard against the possibility for any
    person or group to become too powerful.

  • 4. The Constitution specified exactly what power
    the central government had and which power was
    reserved for the states, for fear that the
    central government might weaken or take away the
    power of the state governments.

  • 5. The Constitution did not have any words
    guaranteeing the freedoms or the basic rights and
    privileges of citizens, so a Bill of Rights
    was added to the Constitution in 1791.

  • III. The three branches
  • 1. Legislative branch
  • It can make federal laws, levy federal taxes,
    declare war and put foreign treaties into effect.

  • It consists of a Congress that is divided into
    two houses the House of representatives (435)
    comprises lawmakers who serve two-year term, and
    the Senate comprises lawmakers(two for each
    state) who serve six-year term.

  • The main duty of the Congress is to make laws,
    which begin as proposals called bills. A bill
    is discussed and voted upon in one house if it
    passes, it is sent to the other house where a
    similar procedure occurs. When both houses pass a
    bill, it is sent to the president for his

  • 2. Executive branch
  • The chief executive of the US is the president,
    who, with the vice president, is elected to a
    four-year term.

  • The president proposes legislation to Congress
    vetos any bill passed by Congress, but the veto
    can be overridden by a two-thirds vote in both
    houses appoints federal judges (with the
    confirmation by the Senate)

  • He acts as the commander in chief of the armed
    forces appoints the heads and senior officials
    of the executive branch agencies is responsible
    for foreign relations with other nations.

  • 3. Judicial branch
  • The Judicial branch is headed by the Supreme
    Court, the only court specifically created by the
    Constitution. There are 11 federal courts of
    appeal, and below them, 91 federal district

  • The Supreme Court consists of a chief justice and
    8 associate justices. Its most important function
    consists of determining whether congressional
    legislation or executive action violates the

  • Federal judges are appointed for life or
    voluntary retirement, and can only be removed
    from office through the process of impeachment
    and trial in the Congress.

  • Federal courts have jurisdiction over cases
    arising out of the Constitution laws and
    treaties of the US maritime cases issues
    involving foreign citizens or governments and
    cases in which the federal government itself is a

  • IV. The system of checks and balances it works
    in many ways to keep serious mistakes from being
    made by one branch or another.

V. Bill of Rights
  • 1. Bill of Rights consists of 10 very short
    paragraphs which guarantee freedom and individual
    rights and forbid interference with lives of
    individuals by the government. Each paragraph is
    an Amendment to the original Constitution.

  • 2. Americans have freedom of religion, of speech
    and of the press. They have the right to assemble
    in public places, to protest government actions
    and to demand change. They have the right to own
    weapons they have the right to a speedy trial if
    accused of a crime.

  • VI. Political party system
  • 1.The Democratic Party evolved out of Thomas
    Jeffersons party, formed before 1800 (the
    Democratic Republican Party). Its symbol is the

  • 2. The Democratic Party is regarded as the more
    liberal party, because Democrats believe the
    federal government and the state governments
    should be active in providing social and economic
    programs for those who need them ( Franklin
    Roosevelts New Deal plan).

  • 3. The Republican Party was formed in the 1850s,
    by people in the states of the North and West.
    Its smybol is the elephant.

  • 4. Republicans believe that many social programs
    are too costly to the tax-payers and that when
    taxes are raised to pay for programs, everyone is
    hurt. They place more emphasis on private

  • 5. One concern many Americans have about their
    political system is the high cost of campaigning
    for public office.

  • 6. Another concern is that much of the money to
    fund political campaigns comes from organized
    interest groups rather than individuals

Part Three American Economy
  • I. The changes the Industrial Revolution brought
    to the US

  • 1. The introduction of the factory system, which
    gathered many workers together in one workplace
    and produced goods for distribution over a wide

  • 1) The first factory in the US is dated to 1793,
    a cotton textile mill in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

  • 2) In 1793, an Englishman named Samuel Slater
    came to the US to build a cotton cloth factory.
    This turned the north-eastern region into an
    important manufacturing center.

  • 2. The American system of mass production which
    originated in the firearms industry about 1800.

  • 1) Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin.
  • 2) In 1913, the automaker Henry Ford introduced
    the moving assembly line

  • 3.The concepts of scientific management form a
    new breed of industrial managers who helped to
    lower the costs of production still further.

  • 3. The application of new technologies to
    industrial tasks
  • 4. The emergency of new forms of business
    organization, notably the bank and the
    corporarion, which falicitated the growth of

  • 5. The construction of railroads beginning in the
    1830s, marked the start of a new era for the US.

  • 1) It increased business activities and the
    spread of settlements.
  • 2) It created a growing demand for coal, iron and
    steel, helping to support the heavy industries.

  • 3) The two world wars spared the US the
    devastation suffered by Europe and Asia. In 1945,
    the US had the greatest productive capacity of
    all the worlds nations.

  • II. The roots of affluence
  • 1. The geographical location and size of the
  • 2. Bountiful resources

  • 3. Mobility in the population (geographical,
    social and economical)
  • 4. religious, social and political traditions

  • 5. The institutional structures of government and
    business ( the reluctance of American political
    leaders to intervene in economic activities)

  • 6. The courage, hard work and determination of
    entrepreneurs and workers (a useful flexibility
    to business life entrepreneurial spirit).

III. Free enterprise
  • 1. Most Americans believe that the rise of the US
    as a leading producer could be attributed to the
    economic freedom of capitalism, or free

  • 2. The story of American economic growth is a
    story of people inventing new devices and
    processes, starting new businesses and launching
    new ventures.

  • 3. The selling of stock, or shares in a business
    started in Europe long before the American
    Revolution, but the stock trading practice was
    greatly increased in the vigorous free-market
    climate of the young United States.

  • 4. Many problems accompanied the develoment of
    modern American industrial capitalism during the
    19th century exploitation of immigragrants
    discrimination in hiring monopolies speculations

IV. American agriculture
  • 1. From the earliest days up to now agriculture
    provides the sustenance that meets peoples most
    basic needs. Agriculture and its related
    industries serve as the foundation of American
    economic life.

  • 2. Farmers have never truly been as sufficient
    as myth suggests, dependent as they are on the
    whims of weather and the marketplace and the
    government policy.

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

  • 4. The reasons for American agriculture to assume
    such richness and variety
  • the vastness of the nation itself

  • the generosity of nature
  • the effective use of new technology, machines,
    fertilizers and chemicals.

  • 5. American agriculture is big business and
    agribusiness includes farmer cooperatives, rural
    banks, shippers of farm products, commodity
    dealers, farm equipment producers,
    food-processing industries, grocery chains and
    many others.

  • 6. The dark side of American agriculture
  • Farmers go through alternating periods of
    prosperity and recession because of the change of
    weather and government policy

  • The high productivity has kept food prices low
    for consumers, but crop surpluss and low prices
    have made it hard for farmers to make a profit.

  • Many small farms are disappearing, and many
    owners of smaller farms do not work the farms
    full-time. There are some 240000 tenant farmers,
    known as migrant workers.

  • Both corporate and family farmers are accused of
    damaging the envionment by using artificial
    fertilizers and chemicals.

Part Four Religion in the US
  • Religious liberty
  • 1. no state-supported religion, which hoped to
    ensure that diversity of religious belief would
    never become the source of social or political
    injustice or disaffection.

  • 2. American government would not meddle in
    religious affairs or require any religious
    beliefs of its citizens. In some ways, the
    government supports all religion.

  • 3. But the government does not pay ministers
    salaries or require any belief as a condition of
    holding public offices.

  • II. Protestants in the US
  • 1. Over 60 of Americans are said to be
    Protestant believers. The Baptists are the
    largest Protestant group ( adult baptism by

  • 2. Next to the Baptists, the most numerous
    Protestants are the Methodists (John Wesley), and
    their form of service is based on that of the
    Church of England.

  • 3. There are more than 100 other Protestant
  • 4. The Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians,
    Episcopalians(???????) represent 31.9 of the

  • III. Catholics
  • 1. The largest single religious group is that
    of Roman Catholics. More than one-quarter (26.2)
    of all Americans are now of the Roman Catholic

  • 2. The majority of the Catholics are descendants
    of immigrants from Ireland, Italy and Poland, and
    they mainly concentrate in New York and

IV. Three faiths
  • By the 1950s, a kind of three faiths model had
    developed in the US. Americans were considered to
    come in three basic varieties Protestant,
    Catholic, and Jewish, but an increasing number of
    Americans did not fit into any of these groups.

V. Religious diversity
  • 1. The Amish, very strict Protestants who live in
    rural areas and scorn modern life, came from
    Germany in the 18th century. Such religious
    groups regard the larger society as hopelessly
    corrupt, and want to withdraw from society and
    join a commune.

  • 2. A Jehovahs Witness refused a blood
    transfusion for himself or his child, because
    such groups prefer faith healing to modern

  • 3. The Mormons, a large and prosperous Christian
    sect which settled the state of Utah, could marry
    more than one wife.

  • 4. Over 2 million members of the Islamic religion
    live in America.
  • 5. Buddhism is a growing faith in Aemrica.
  • 6. Several hundred thousand Hindus have also come
    to America.

  • 7. Individuals may believe anything they please
    in America, but they may not do anything they
    want, even if the action is based on a religious

VI. American character of religion
  • 1. Americans with different religion live
    together under the same law. The freedom of
    religion and the separation of state and church
    guaranteed in the Constitution is believed to be
    the basic pribciples against religious

  • 2. The religious beliefs of Americans continue to
    be strong with social progress.In America,
    through all the social and economic changes
    religion has remained a constant factor.

  • 3. In the US every church is a completely
    independent organization, and concerned with its
    own finance and its own building.

  • 4. The church is a place where people can meet
    others with whom they would like to make friends,
    to identify themselves with dominant values, and
    to have a place in a community.

Part Five Education in the US
  • 1. The goal of education is 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.

  • 2. Students from kindergarten to the 12th grade
    attend classes for an average of 5 hours a day, 5
    days a week.

  • 3. About 90 of American students attend public
    schools (supported by American taxpayers). The
    other 10 attend private schools, for which their
    families choose to pay special attendance fees.

  • 4. Boards of education ( policy makers of
    schools) at the state and / or district level
    will guide the spending, the school curriculum,
    teacher standards and certification, and the
    overall measurement of student progress.

  • 5. Each of the 50 states in the US has its own
    laws regulating education (age limits to
    attending schools the selection of learning

  • II. What an American student learns
  • 1. Elementary school it means grades
    kindergarten (K) through 8 (grammar school),

  • Every elementary school provides these subjects
    maths language arts ( reading, grammar,
    composition and literature) penmanship(??)scienc
    e social studies (history, geography,
    citizenship and economics) music art P.E.

  • 2. Secondary school it means grades 9-12 (high
    school), and most secondary schools offer the
    same core of the required subjects English
    mathematics science social studies and P.E.

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

III.Education in a new nation
  • 1. When Puritans founded the Massachusettes Bay
    Colony in 1630, one of the things they believed
    was that every person should be able to read the

  • 2. Throughout the colonies, young men and women
    could receive an education in reading by becoming
    an apprentice in a small business.

  • 3. One of the reserved powers to the state
    governements was the right of each state to
    provide for the education of its people.
    Education in the US was to remain in the hands of
    state and local governments.

IV.Higher education
  • 1. 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.

  • 2. Each year one-third of high school graduates
    will go on for higher education..

  • 3. Applicants will be chosen by college on the
    basis of 1) their high school records 2)
    recommendations from their high school teachers
    3) the impression they make during interviews at
    the university

  • 4) their scores on the Scholastic Apptitude Tests
    (SATs, only in mathematics and English). In
    recent years, other factors, such as the
    applicants talents, voluntary activities and
    life experience, will also be taken into account.

  • 4. The system of higher education in the US
    comprises 4 categories of institutions

  • the university, which may contain several
    colleges for undergraduate students for a
    bachelors degree (4 years) and one or more
    graduate schools for a masters or a doctoral

  • The four-year undergraduate institution -- the
    collegemost of which are not part of a

  • The technical training institution, ranging in
    time from 6 months to 4 years, and in skills from
    hair-styling to business accounting.

  • The two-year, or community college, from which
    students may enter many professions or may
    transfer to four-year colleges or universities.

  • 5. Factors that determine the prestige of an
  • Quarlity of teaching faculty, and of research

  • Amount of funding available for libraries,
    special programs, etc.
  • The competence and number of applicants for

  • 6. How students select a college or university
  • learning about a schools entrance requirements
    and its fees

  • What degrees does the school offer and how long
    does it take to earn one?
  • What curriculua does a school offer, and what are
    the requirements for earning a degree?

  • 7. Both public and private colleges depend on
    three sources of income student tuition,
    emdowmens( gifts made by wealthy benefactors) and
    government funding.

V. Education for all
  • 1.The Servicemens Readjustment Act of 1944 it
    was popularly called the GI Bill of Rights. It
    promised financial aid, including aid for higher
    education to members of the armed forces after
    the end of WWII.

  • 2.Affirmative Action Programs (???????,?????)were
    first advocated by some colleges in the 1960s, to
    equalize educational opportunities for all groups
    and to make up for past inequality by giving
    special preference to members of minorities
    seeking jobs or admission to college

  • 3. Non-traditional students students who have
    worked for several years before starting college,
    or students who go to school part-time while
    holding doen a job.

Part Six Social Movements of the 1960s
  • What is a social movement?
  • It 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.

  • 2. Why did the social movements begin?
  • In the 1960s, many people, such Afro-Americans,
    young people and women, were dissatified with
    their lives.

  • II. The Civil Rights Movenment
  • 1. The Civil Rights Movement began when black
    people spontaneously protested segregation laws
    and created organizations to make the protests

  • 2. Organizations CORE (the Congress of Racial
    Equality), SCLD (the Southern Christian
    Leadership Conference), SNCC (the Student
    Non-violent Coordinating Committee)

  • 3. Direct action tactics sit-in, freedom
    rides, voter registration their song We shall

  • 4. The Civil Rights Act was passed by Congress
    and signe dinto law by Prsident Johnson in the
    summer of 1964.

  • 5. As racial violence continued, black people
    beagn to question the nonviolence tactics used in
    the South. Malcolm X, a black Moslem leader,
    believed that blacks should arm themselvs and
    fight the Ku Klux Klan and other white

  • 6. Other black leaders spoke in favor of black
    separatism and against nonviolence in fighting
    discrimination and racism. They even shouted for
    Black Power. Martin Luther King Jr. disagreed,
    saying that black power should come through
    programs, not slogans.

  • II. The Youth Movement/Anti-War Movement
  • 1. After working in the South during Freedom
    Summer 1964, many white students from the North
    changed greatly, both in appearance and in their
    attitudes and beliefs.

  • 2. The young peoples Free Speech Movement
    began, starting from an spontaneous, non-violent,
    direct sit-in at the campus of the University of
    california at Berkeley in October 1964.

  • 3. As the youth movement spread outside the
    campuses, some young people formed a
    counterculture. They rejected capitalism and
    other American principles. The Hippies were
    representative of this counterculture.

  • 4. The anti-war movement became more organized as
    a loose coalition of many organizations.

  • IV. The Womens Movement
  • The womens movement in the 1960s was started by
    three groups pf women and an accident.

  • 1. The first was a group of professional women
    who were appointed to a Commission on the Status
    of Women by President Kennedy in 1961.

  • 2. The second group were mostly white housewives
    and mothers who read Betty Friedans book, The
    Fiminine Mystique, published in 1963. The book
    changed the way large numbers of women thought
    about themselves and other women.

  • 3. The third group were young activists in the
    civil rights and anti-war movements. They became
    known as the womens liberation group, or
    womens lib. They used radical tactics and
    received great deal of bad publicity.

  • 4. The accident was a word in the Civil Rights
    Act passed in 1964. This law made discrimination
    in employment based on race or sex illegal,
    adding women to those groups not to be
    discriminated against.

  • 5. Women worked for changes in economic
    practices, in social practices and attitudes.
    (Speak your heart without interruption.)

Part Seven Social Problems in the US
  • I. Racial problems
  • 1. Though people all share a common American
    culture, the nation contains many racial and
    ethnic subcultures with their own distinctive

  • 2. 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

  • 3. Those whose ethnic or racial characteristics
    differ most markedly from those of the dominant
    groups have been excluded by formal and informal
    barries from full participation in American life.

  • 4. All racial groups are still suffering from
    racial discrimination and injustice.

  • 5. The Hispanics account for 12.3 of the
    population, and the blacks take up 11.7 of the
    population. Their history in the US has been one
    of sustained oppression, discrimination, and
    denial of basic civil rights and liberties.

  • 6. The myth of their racial inferiority ---
    irresponsibility, promiscuity (??), laziness and
    lower intelligence --- was repeatedly propagated
    as a justification for their long-lasting

  • 7. The elimination of legal barriers to their
    advancement has been a major gain, but
    instituionalized discrimination is still rife.

  • 8. As many as one-third of blacks have worked
    their way into the middle class, but other blacks
    have been left behind in the urban ghettos and
    become the impoverished underclass

  • II. Poverty
  • 1. In 2003, about 12.5 of Americans are
    living at or below the official poverty line.
    There are millions more, living slightly above
    the poverty line, whose plight is not much better.

  • 2. Because of social-class inequality, the
    underclass continue to persist, and most of the
    wealth has not been accumulated through hard work
    or imaginative skills of those who now enjoy

  • 3. The richest fifth of American families
    receives over 40 of the national income, whereas
    the poorest fifth receives only 5.2.

  • III. Drug abuse
  • 1. Drug abuse in the US is a social problem
    because it ahs a wide range of social costs, some
    obvious and measurable, some hidden and difficult
    to quantify.

  • 2. There is a strong association between some
    forms of drug use and crime. For example, the use
    of alcohol, heroin addiction, and more recently,
    the trade of cocaine.

  • 3. Alcohol use is directly responsible for
    countless highway accidents and injuries,
    property damage, and medical expenses.

  • 4. It causes huge economic losses medical
    bills, lost production, indirect costs on
    drug-depedent persons, increasing cost of social
    welfare, cost on processing drug users through
    the criminal justice system.

  • IV. Crime
  • 1. Those arrested for crime are
    disproportionately likely to be male, young, a
    member of a racial minority, and a city resident.
    Two resons for this

  • The sex role stereotyping encourages males to be
    more aggressive and daring, while female are
    encouraged to be more passive and conforming to
    rules and norms.

  • The tendency of police officiers and the courts
    to deal more leniently with female offenders.

  • 2. Members of racial minority groups have a
    disproportionately higher rate of arrests.

  • One rason is that a higher proportion of the
    black population is poor or unemployed, and there
    are high correlations between poverty/unemployment
    and crime.

  • Another reason is racial prejudice. A number of
    studies have shown that the probability of
    arrest, prosecution, conviction, and
    incarceration (??) for an offence decreases as
    the social status of the offender increases.

  • 3. The poor, the unfereducated, and minorities
    have been the victims not only of selective law
    enforcement, but also of misleading statistics on

  • the Serious crime Index of UCR focuses on crimes
    which are more apt to be committed by persons of
    lower social and economic status.

  • It does not contain the types of crimes
    typically committed by higher income groups
    fraud, false advertising, corporate price fixing,
    bribery, embezzlement, industrial pollution, tax
    evasion, and so on.

  • V. The abuse of power by government and
  • 1. American lives are dominated by large public
    and private organizations however, government
    and corporations are widely distrusted in the US.

  • 2. The public organizations, primarily government
    agencies, affect almost every area of Americans
    experience birth, education, social service,
    marriage, employment, taxes, and death.

  • 3. American lives and their entire complex
    civilization are largely dependent on big
    organizations, which are supposed to satisfy
    needs and improve the quality of lives,

  • Being oppressive, unresponsive, impersonal,
    inefficient, arrogant, and corrupt, they are
    believed to be more concerned with their own
    profits than with social responsibility.

Part Nine Post-WWII American Foreign Policy
  • I. American foreign policy between 1945 and 1991
    --- to contain Soviet expansion and to finally
    bring about change in Soviet political system

  • 1. The beginning of the Cold War
  • Before WWII American foreign policy has been
    swinging between isolationism and
    internationalism (interventionism).

  • When the war ended, the US emerged unscathed, and
    the strongest country in the world the sole
    possessor of atomic bombs, with over 70 of the
    world gold reserve, over 50 of the world
    industrial production.

  • The US hoped to establish Pax Americana (American
    peace), i.e. a world order dominated by the US, a
    world market free and open to American goods and
    services, and all countries modeling on American
    institution and values.

  • The Soviet Union suffered great losses in the
    war. It wanted to keep what it had got in the
    war, a sphere of influence agreed on by the US
    and Britain at Yalta in 1945. Gradually, the two
    wartime allies fell apart and the Cold War began.

  • 2. The Arms Race
  • In 1949, the SU detonated its first atomic device.

  • The US had its first test of the Hydrogen bomb in
    1952, and the SU followed in 1953.

  • In 1957, the SU launched two sputniks (man-made
    satellites), which caused fear and anxiety on the
    part of the US.

  • Later, the SU achieved parity with the US in
    nuclear force.
  • American strategy shifted to the balance of
    terror --- mutual assured deterrence(??????).

  • Ronald Reagan initiated the Star Wars project in
    order to drag the SU into another round of arms

  • 3. The containment policy
  • The Truman Doctrine in 1948 was the formal
    announcement of the implementation of containment

  • In Asia, the US fought two wars --- the Korean
    War (1950-53) and the Vietnam War ( 1954-1973).

  • The Nixon administration adopted a strategy of
    contraction. Nixon visited China and tried to use
    the China card to deal with the SU.

  • In Europe, the confrontations between NATO and
    the Warsaw Pact took place in Berlin in 1958 and
    1961. And in August 13, 1961, a concrete wall was
    built, separating East and West Berlin. It became
    the symbol of the Cold War.

  • The Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 brought the US
    and the SU on the brink of a nuclear war.

  • II. American foreign policy after 1991 --- to
    maintain American domination in the world and to
    remake the world in American image
  • 1. Engagement (??) and Expansion

  • The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the change
    of color of the Eastern European countries, and
    the disintegration of the SU at the end of 1991
    radically changed the balance of power in the

  • The removal of its chief rival, and the triumph
    of the Desert Storm (the first Gulf War in 1991)
    made the US the only super power of the world.
    America once again brought up the idea of a Pax

  • The US will not allow any world power or rgional
    power to emerge to challenge American global
    leadership or leadership in regions vital to
    American national interests.

  • The Clinton Administration made national
    security, economic prosperity, and promotion of
    democracy the three pillars of American foreign
  • 2. Unilateralism and faith in military strength

  • When George W. Bush became President in 2001, he
    pursued a stratege of unilateralism and faith in
    military strength, i.e. to review policies and
    international agreements from the point of view
    of American national interests.

  • Such unilateral actions drew strong criticism and
    resentment from all over the world. The September
    11 terrorist attack took place. The US adjusted
    its policy and worked to form an anti-terrorism

  • In October 2001, the US launched an all-round
    attack on Afghanistan and won a decisive victory
    in 2 months time, which greatly boosted American

  • President Bush put forward the strategy of
    preemption in 2002 in an address delivered to the
    West Point graduates. (the Bush Doctrine)

  • On March 20, 2003, the US launched large-scale
    air attacks on Iraq without UN authorization,
    which is believed by some people only a battle in
    a wider and longer war to change the nature of
    the governments in Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Part Ten Sports and Scenic Spots in the US
  • I. Sports
  • 1. Football (the American football)

  • American professional football is played during
    the late summer (preseason???), the fall (regular
    season????), and the winter until late in Jan.
    (post-season, or play off time?????????). The
    Super Bowl(????????).

  • 2. Baseball
  • Baseball may still be the great American game,
    even though it is very popular in many other
    countries, such as Japan, Cuba, and the Dominican

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

  • 4. Why do a lot of Americans love sports?
  • One reason is that the game combines teamwork
    with individual prowness in a rough, contact

  • Professional sports in America are entertainment,
    esp. football. Spectators are interested in
    eating and drinking and the sport itself. It is a
    time to party, and a time to advertise products
    for consumption. (consumerism)

  • Americans like to glorify individuals who succeed
    in overcoming obstacles, natural ones as well as
    those presented by others.

  • One way to preserve the notion of individual
    triumph is to return to some mythical past like
    woodsmen and cowboys who supposedly conquered
    nature and wilderness. Sports heros could serve
    to remind Americans that talented individuals can
    succeed through hard work.

  • II. Scenic spots
  • 1. The Grand Canyon National Park

  • It was established in 1908 by President Teddy
    Roosevelt. Located in Arizona, it is Americas
    most famous scenic wonder, and attracts millions
    of visitors from all over the world each year.

  • 2. Yellow Stone National Park
  • It was built in 1872, and is the oldest of the
    national parks and one of the largest. It is
    known for its geysers and hot springs among other
    natural wonders.

  • 3. Florida
  • The southernmost tip of the eastern United States
    is the state of Florida. It is famous for its
    mild climate and beautiful beaches.

  • 4. Niagara Falls
  • It is a natual wonder in the western part of New
    York State. It ia an awe inspiring, dynamic
    display of a torrent of water freely falling over
    a precipice(??) for a distance of 55m.

  • Canada

Part One The Country and its People
  • The Canadian Identity
  • 1. With an area of nearly 10 million square
    kilometers, Canada is the second largest country
    in the world. It has a population of 31.9
    million, and 10 provinces and 3 territories. It
    was founded in 1867.

  • 2. The first clue as to what makes Canada
    special is the two official languages of English
    and French.

  • 3. Canada is a former colony that traces its
    history to the Old Country --- Great Britain,
    which gave Canada its political institutions, its
    territory, its laws, and even its Royal family.

  • 4. Now Canadas policy is to actively encourage
    immigration and assist different cultures to
    maintain their distinctive languages and
    identities, which means that the forging of a
    Canadian identity that applies to everyone
    continues to be a major challenge.

II. The North region
  • 1. Most of the inhabitants in the north are
    aboriginal peoples.
  • 2. The traditional economy in the north was based
    on hunting and trapping animals for food and
    pelts, but now oil and gas deposits are also
    being developed.

III. Prairies
  • They are called the breadbasket of Canada
    because the land is well-suited to farming, and
    wheat is one of the biggest agricultural crops in
    this area. The prairies are also rich in energy

IV. Central Canada
  • 1. Central Canada, consisting of Ontario and
    Quebec, are the parts of the country that were
    first settled in the early 1600s.

  • 2. They are the industial heartland of the
    country and are also the most densely populated
    provinces. They have the largest cities like
    Toronto and Montreal.

Part Two The Government and Politics of Canada
  • Canadas political system reflects the two major
    foreign influences on the historical development
    of the country its legacy as a former colony of
    Britain, and the powerful influence exerted by
    the US.

  • Canadians chose to found a nation based on
    peace, order and good government. In other
    words, for Canadians, the well-being and liberty
    of individuals must sometimes be sacrificed for
    the greater good of the community.

  • Canadians have liked living in a society which
    allows a high degree of tolerance of different
    values and customs as long as the overall good of
    the community is not disturbed by them.

Structures of government
  • Canadas system of government is based on the
    British system of parliamentary democracy. Canada
    is a monarchy. The officila head of state is the
    Queen, but she is represented by a

  • The Canadian parliament is divided into the House
    of Commons and the Senate. The members of the
    House of Commons (about 300 seats) are elected,
    whereas the senators are appointed by the
    Governor-General, who acts upon the
    recommendation of the Prime minister.

  • The Party that wins the most seats in the House
    of Commons forms the Government, and the party
    leader becomes Prime Minister. The Cabinet,
    chosen by the Prime Minister, is made up of
    senior MPs from the governing party.

Part Three The Canadian Mosaic
  • 1. Canada is a nation of immigrants. When Canada
    is described as a mosaic, it means that the
    immigrant groups do not have to throw off their
    old customs, languages and traditions. There is
    no particular concept of an overarching Canadian

  • 2. Multiculturalism has caused something of a
    problem in that Canadians often feel they lack a
    national identity.

  • 3. This patchwork quilt of different
    nationalities and communities is central to what
    Canada is a multicultural, bilingual country
    where efforts are made to pretect, promote and
    celebrate the ways of the different kinds of
    people who live there.

The First Nations
  • 1. The First Nations are the native tribes of
    aboriginal people who lived in Canada before the
    European explorers settled. They were officially
    referred to as the First nations since 1980s
    because they are the original inhabitants of the

  • 2. The Inuit the Inuit used to be called the
    Eskimo. They are a group of aboriginal people who
    lived in fa north, in the harsh conditions of the
    arctic climate by hunting seals, whales and other
    polar animals.

  • 3. The Metis they are another group of
    aboriginal people who emerged when French fur
    traders married Indian women. In appearance and
    lifestyle, their children inherited
    characteristics from both their European and
    aboriginal backgrounds,

  • 4. The aboriginal peoples are still, as a group,
    Canadas poorest inhabitants, with low income,
    short life expectancy, high infant mortality
    rate, high vulnerability to diseases like TB,
    highest suicide rate.

III. Immigration
  • 1. Immigration meant importing labor, and even
    today immigration policy is based on who the
    country needs to help it prosper. Immigration
    policy has traditionally followed the demand of
    the changing Canadian labor market.

  • 2. Another characteristic is that it accepts
    more readily groups who will more easily fit into
    the Canadian society. These make Canada look
    hard-headed rather than humanitarian.

  • 3. Immigration Act of 1976 it encouraged Asian
    immigration, offering passports to those with
    capital and/or entrepreneurial skills. Would-be
    immigrants with more than 250000 (Cdn) to invest
    in businesses that will create jobs and wealth
    were welcomed to settle in Canada.

IV. French Cnadians in Quebec
  • In recent years, many French Canadians feel they
    should separate from the rest of Canada and
    become an independent state since they think that
    their linguistic and cultural heritage is
    threatened, and that they have been economically
    dominated by English Canada.

  • Quebec is a mainly French-speaking province,
    where French speakers comprise 83 of the

Part Four The Canadian Economy
  • I. Three factors influencing Canadian economy
  • Canadas physical geograpgy rich natural
    resources, the huge size and small population

  • The US has a much more powerful economy and a
    larger market, so trade has naturally developed
    across the Can-Am border

  • Canadian federal government has constantly
    intervened in the development of the countrys
    resources and infrastructure to try to manage it,
    rather than allowing market force to play a role.

II. The division of Canadian industries
  • 1. Natural resources (primary industries),
    including agriculture, fishing, forestry and
    mining, accounted for 10 of Canadas GDP (1990).

  • 2. Manufacturing (secondary industries),
    including manufacturing, construction, rtansport
    and communications, made up 36 of GDP.

  • 3. Service (tertiary) industries, including
    trade, finance, services and public
    administration, accounted for nearly 54 of GDP.

IV. Natural resources
  • Canada is rich in natural resources oil, gas,
    coal, uranium for nuclear power, and water for

V. Agriculture
  • 1. 88 of the Canadian landmass is unsuitable
    for farming, and throughout the country, soil is
    poor, the growing season is short and the climate
    is harsh. Despite these, agriculture remains
    important to Canadian economy.

  • 2. In recent years, Canadian agriculture has
    been faced with challenges. Agricultural exports
    have dropped sharply, and it has become cheaper
    in many cases to import foodstuffs rather than to
    produce such items domestically.

VI. Manufacturing industries
  • Canada is mainly an exporter of raw resources and
    an importer of manufactured goods. But it does
    have a variety of industries manufacturing
    products such as paper, technological equipment,
    automobiles, food, clothing and other goods.

Part Five Canadas International Relations
  • I. Political geography
  • Perhaps the major influence on Canadas
    participation in the international system is its
    geography the worlds longest coastline, vast
    territory, small population.

  • Canada lies between two superpowers --- Russia
    and the US. Because of its military
    vulnerability, Canadian policy-makers have had a
    great interest in promoting peacr and cooperation
    among nations.

II. Canada-US relations
  • 1. They are two of the most open and
    interconnected socieites in the world. The
    sovereignty of the two countries is less formal
    and concrete.

  • 2. They share a long, undefended border, and
    they participated in the same military alliance,
    most notably, the North Atlantic Treaty

  • 3. They also share long term interests in their
    economy. And to facilitate economic integration,
    the two countries established the North American
    Free Trade Agreement

III. Overseas development programs
  • 1. Canada was a colony, and therefore, it feels
    that to some extent, it can empathize with the
    problems countries face when they try to break
    away from their imperial past and become
    independent. ( much wealth was taken to Britain)

  • 2. Canadas economy has been heavily based on the
    export of raw materials like forestry products,
    fish, oil and grain. This means that economic
    well-being has been at the mercy of fluctuating
    world commodity prices over which Canada has
    little control.

  • 3. Canada has been very dominated by the US
    economy, so shares similar concerns with smaller
    economies which run the risk of being swallowed
    up by bigger ones.

  • 4. Canadian policy-makers believe that the best
    way to ensure its security is to promote peace
    and security in the international system, so its
    no surprise that it feels it has a special
    commitment to helping the Third World.