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A biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age

An unseen and fearful revolution is taking place in the fiber and structure of society. One can only dimly feel these things, but they are in the air, now, today. Terrible forces seemed out of control and the nation seemed imperiled.

Farmers and workers had been waging political war against capitalists and political conservatives for decades, but then, slowly, toward the end of the nineteenth century a new generation of middle-class Americans interjected themselves into public life and advocated new reforms to tame the runaway world of the Gilded Age. Widespread dissatisfaction with new trends in American society spurred the Progressive Era, named for the various progressive movements that attracted various constituencies around various reforms.

Reformers sought to clean up politics; black Americans continued their long struggle for civil rights; women demanded the vote with greater intensity while also demanding a more equal role in society at large; and workers demanded higher wages, safer workplaces, and the union recognition that would guarantee these rights. Whatever their goals, reform became the word of the age, and the sum of their efforts, whatever their ultimate impact a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age original intentions, gave the era its name.

The doors of the factory had been chained shut to prevent employees from taking unauthorized breaks the managers who held the keys saved themselves, but left over two hundred women behind. A rickety fire ladder on the side of the building collapsed immediately.

Photographs like this made real the atrocities that could result from unsafe working conditions. A year before, the Triangle workers had gone on strike demanding union recognition, higher wages, and better safety conditions.

I remembered their great strike last year in which the same girls had demanded more sanitary conditions and more safety precautions in the shops. These dead bodies were the answer. Every week I must learn of the untimely death of one of my sister workers.

There are so many of us for one job, it matters little if 140-odd are burned to death. They were acquitted after less than two hours of deliberation. But as such tragedies mounted and working and living conditions worsened and inequality grew, it became increasingly difficult to develop justifications for this new modern order. Events such as the Triangle Shirtwaist fire convinced many Americans of the need for reform, but the energies of activists were needed to spread a new commitment to political activism a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age government interference in the economy.

Politicians, journalists, novelists, religious leaders, and activists all raised their voices to push Americans toward reform. Ray Stannard Baker, a journalist whose reports on U. It was because the country, for years, had been swept by the agitation of soap-box orators, prophets crying in the wilderness, and political campaigns based upon charges of corruption and privilege which everyone believed or suspected had some basis of truth, but which were largely unsubstantiated.

Riis not only vividly described the squalor he saw, he documented it with photography, giving readers an unflinching view of urban poverty.

Although Sinclair intended the novel to reveal the brutal exploitation of labor in the meatpacking industry, and thus to build support for the socialist movement, its major impact was to lay bare the entire process of industrialized food production. The growing invisibility of slaughterhouses and livestock production for urban consumers had enabled unsanitary and unsafe conditions.

Of course, it was not only journalists who raised questions about American society. In it, a man falls asleep in Boston in 1887 and awakens in 2000 to find society radically altered.

Poverty and disease and competition gave way as new industrial armies cooperated to build a utopia of social harmony and economic prosperity. The meaning of the word could not then, however, have been at all what it is at present, or you certainly would not have applied it to a society of which nearly every member was in a position of galling personal dependence upon others as to the very means of life, the poor upon the rich, or employed upon employer, women upon men, children upon parents.

What Would Jesus Do? The social gospel emerged within Protestant Christianity at the end of the nineteenth century. It emphasized the need for Christians to be concerned for the salvation of society, and not simply individual souls. Instead of just caring for a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age or fellow church members, social gospel advocates encouraged Christians to engage society; challenge social, political, and economic structures; and help those less fortunate than themselves.

Responding to the developments of the industrial revolution in America and the increasing concentration of people in urban spaces, with its attendant social and economic problems, some social gospelers went so far as to advocate a form of Christian socialism, but all urged Americans to confront the sins of their society. One of the most notable advocates of the social gospel was Walter Rauschenbusch.

Rauschenbusch joined with fellow reformers to elect a new mayoral candidate, but he also realized that a new theological framework had to reflect his interest in society and its problems. Maxwell, Rauschenbusch believed that every Christian, whether they were a businessperson, a politician, or a stay-at-home parent, should ask themselves what they could to enact the kingdom of God on Earth. The individualistic gospel has taught us to see the sinfulness of every human heart and has inspired a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age with faith in the willingness and power of God to save every soul that comes to him.

But it has not given us an adequate understanding of the sinfulness of the social order and its share in the sins of all individuals within it. It has not evoked faith in the will and power of God to redeem the permanent institutions of human society from their inherited guilt of oppression and extortion. Both our sense of sin and our faith in salvation have fallen short of the realities under its teaching.

The social gospel seeks to bring men under repentance for their collective sins and to create a more sensitive and more modern conscience. It calls on us for the faith of the old prophets who believed in the salvation of nations. Many were also silent on the plight of African Americans, Native Americans, and other oppressed minority groups. However, the writings of Rauschenbusch and other social gospel proponents a profound a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age on twentieth-century American life.

Most immediately, they fueled a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age reform. But they also inspired future activists, including Martin Luther King Jr. During this one event, 20,000 women defied the gender norms that tried to relegate them to the private sphere and deny them the vote. Some focused on intellectual development; others emphasized philanthropic activities. Increasingly, these organizations looked outward, to their communities and to the place of women in the larger political sphere.

Few of these organizations were biracial, a legacy of the sometimes uneasy midnineteenth-century relationship between socially active African Americans and white women. Rising American prejudice led many white female activists to ban inclusion of their African American sisters. The segregation of black women into distinct clubs nonetheless still produced vibrant organizations that a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age promise racial uplift and civil rights for all blacks as well as equal rights for women.

Other women worked through churches and moral reform organizations to clean up American life. And still others worked as moral vigilantes. The fearsome Carrie A. In Wichita, Kansas, on December 27, 1900, Nation took a hatchet and broke bottles and bars at the luxurious Carey Hotel.

Temperance, and then the full prohibition of alcohol, however, always loomed large. Many American reformers associated alcohol with nearly every social ill. Alcohol was blamed for domestic abuse, poverty, crime, and disease. The 1912 Anti-Saloon League Yearbook, for instance, presented charts indicating comparable increases in alcohol consumption alongside rising divorce rates.

Powerful female activists emerged out of the club movement and temperance campaigns. Perhaps no American reformer matched Jane Addams in fame, energy, and innovation.

Born in Cedarville, Illinois, in 1860, Addams lost her mother by age two and lived under the attentive care of her father. At seventeen, she left home to attend Rockford Female Seminary. An idealist, Addams sought the means to make the world a better place. She believed that well-educated women of means, such as herself, lacked practical strategies for engaging everyday reform.

She found herself drawn to English settlement houses, a kind of prototype for social work in which philanthropists embedded themselves among communities and offered services to disadvantaged populations.

It insists that these problems are not confined to any one portion of the city. It is an attempt to relieve, at the same time, the overaccumulation at one end of society and the destitution at the other … It must be grounded in a philosophy whose foundation is on the solidarity of the human race, a philosophy which will not waver when the race happens to be represented by a drunken woman or an idiot boy. Reformer Florence Kelley, who stayed at Hull House from 1891 to 1899, convinced Addams to move into the realm of social reform.

Addams began pressuring politicians. Together Kelley and Addams petitioned legislators to pass antisweatshop legislation that limited the hours of work for women and children to eight per day. Yet Addams was an upper-class white Protestant woman who, like many reformers, refused to embrace more radical policies. Beginning with her work in the Anti-Imperialist League during the Spanish-American War, Addams increasingly began to see militarism as a drain on resources better spent on social reform.

In 1907 she wrote Newer Ideals of Peace, a book that would become for many a philosophical foundation of pacifism. She a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931. Notable victories were won in the West, where suffragists mobilized large numbers of women and male politicians were open to experimental forms of governance.

By 1911, six western states had passed suffrage amendments to their constitutions. Women protested silently in front of the White House for over two years before the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment.

WTUL members viewed the vote a biography of jane addams a person who influenced america during the guilded age a way to further their economic interests and to foster a new sense of respect for working-class women. Many white American women argued that enfranchising white upper- and middle-class women would counteract black voters. These arguments even stretched into international politics. But whether the message advocated gender equality, class politics, or white supremacy, the suffrage campaign was winning.

Determined to win the vote; the National American Suffrage Association developed a dual strategy that focused on the passage of state voting rights laws and on the ratification of an amendment to the U.

Meanwhile, a new, more militant, suffrage organization emerged on the scene. After the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment, women from all walks of life mobilized to vote. They were driven by the promise of change but also in some cases by their anxieties about the future.

Much had changed since their campaign began; the United States was now more industrial than not, increasingly more urban than rural. The activism and activities of these new urban denizens also gave rise to a new American culture. Capitol, and one tentacle reaching for the White House. The only building not yet within reach of the octopus is the White House—President Teddy Roosevelt had won a reputation as a trust buster.

The rapid industrialization, technological advancement, and urban growth of the 1870s and 1880s triggered major changes in the way businesses structured themselves.

20. The Progressive Era

Steel and John D. Each displayed the vertical and horizontal integration strategies common to the new trusts: Carnegie first used vertical integration by controlling every phase of business raw materials, transportation, manufacturing, distributionand Rockefeller adhered to horizontal integration by buying out competing refineries. Once dominant in a market, critics alleged, the trusts could artificially inflate prices, bully rivals, and bribe politicians.

Between 1897 and 1904, over four thousand companies were consolidated down into 257 corporate firms. Mergers and the aggressive business policies of wealthy men such as Carnegie and Rockefeller earned them the epithet robber barons. Their cutthroat stifling of economic competition, mistreatment of workers, and corruption of politics sparked an opposition that pushed for regulations to rein in the power of monopolies.