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Significance of social and economic change in the USA between 1898-1921

Uploaded by ff9master on Sep 12, 2001

Sweeping social and economic reforms that occur in any country at any time are always very significant. In relation to the United States of America (USA) during the period of 1898-1921, it is even more so. This period of time saw remarkable changes occurring both inside the USA, and in relation to the USA and the outside world as it became a global force. After the Spanish-American War, led by President McKinley, American ideologies, basically ignorant, capitalist and isolationist at heart, seemed to shift and do a 180 degree turn. This can be said as being signified by the accession of the political dogma of Progressivism, advocated by the next President Theodore Roosevelt, who believed in a 'Dirigisme' style of government. With Roosevelt came swift economical and business reforms, the Roosevelt coined 'Square Deal' is an example of the reforms he implemented, and the advent of the 'muckrakers', with their campaigns against malpractice in the corporate world and big business monopolistic power. William Howard Taft, the successor of Roosevelt, tried to follow this road with his attempts at reforming tariff protection, but inner party disagreements, and a split, in the Republican camp denied him the chance to do so. As the world, and America, edged closer to the First World War, we see that the United States had significantly revolutionised both socially and economically, especially assisted with the Democrat Woodrow Wilson as President, who reformed the country more than any other. However, as the Great War progressed and after its completion, we see a drastic reversal. A new US stepped out of the war, one where its people wore blinkers for thinking caps. As the era of Communist take-over fears, suffrage for women, prohibition and the 'roaring 20's' neared, isolationism, restricted immigration, and social, civil, and racial unrest had come to the forefront of American society's priorities. This period ended with the introduction of 'laissez-faire' economics, a swift turn-around from usual government methods used in the last 20 years. American society had once again done a 180-degree turn, back to 'normalcy', under the guidance of President Warren Harding. This original form of control and regulation in the country was a way in which the people repudiated all the years of hard work done by the progressives and others in the past in their attempts to make the USA a more friendly, safe, prosperous and free place to live in. Permeating...

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Uploaded by:   ff9master

Date:   09/12/2001

Category:   American History

Length:   24 pages (5,371 words)

Views:   1647

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