Gilded Age Essay with Citations

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Date Submitted: 07/29/2013 02:26 PM

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The Truth Revealed Behind the Industrial Society

At the turn of the century, the United States underwent one of the most rapid and profound economic revolutions any country has ever experienced (Foner 586). The time period that in which the United States would experience industrial development, monopolies, and massive economic revolutions is known as the Gilded Age. “By 1913, the United States produced one-third of the world’s industrial output-more than the total of Great Britain, France, and Germany combined” (Foner 587). Within the Gilded Age, came avid supporters of imperialism which is the expansion overseas. On the opposite end of the spectrum were anti- imperialists like William Graham Sumner. William Graham Sumner wrote The Absurd Effort to Make the World Over to support that the industrial society that the United States was creating in 1883. Even though Sumner did not support imperialism he was in favor of the new industrial society. The industrial changes in the American society revolutionized American life in the late 1800’s and Sumner uses his essay as a tool to persuade the American people that the industrial changes were beneficial.

William Graham Sumner opens his argument by stating that the majority of the general public is misled by articles in the newspaper. Sumner felt that not enough people were educating themselves on the industrial revolution and that writers tend to rewrite history. “Writers very often assert that something never existed before because they do not know that it ever existed before” (Shi 73). Sumner’s solution to the problem was simple for writers to gather more information regarding the industrial revolution as oppose to misleading readers. Also, many people at the time were afraid of change so Sumner’s hope in writing the essay was to persuade the common American into supporting the new industrial society.

The common American was typically considered to be a white man. All other minorities like, Indians, immigrants,...