American Experience Term Paper

Pages: 2 (641 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: American History

American Experience

Americans pride themselves on their nation, its achievements and its fundamental philosophy of government. Yet what is commonly thought of as the "greatest nation in the world" has frequently, systematically, and continually failed large segments of its society. The Declaration of Independence outlined lofty goals of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," and yet those ideals did not apply to one-half of the entire population: women; nor did the ideals apply to African-Americans. In fact, African-Americans were legally defined as three-fifths of a human being in the United States Constitution: a literal fraction of a person. Thus, embedded within the American legal and political system were safeguards to protect the rights of an elite few over the rights of others; to promote a culture of discrimination; and to preserve an unjust and unequal social order throughout the nation.

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The American Revolution helped liberate a new nation from the distant and somewhat oppressive regime of the British monarchy. However, the founding fathers were not necessarily social liberals. Thomas Jefferson believed outright that the government should be run by a select group of learned white males. Andrew Jackson opposed his view, supporting instead a more populist form of democracy. Both men impacted American politics, which in many cases has proven itself to be a government "by the people."

Term Paper on American Experience Assignment

However, one-half of the American population was excluded fully from participating in politics at all, let alone voting. Women, regardless of their race, religion, or social class, were not considered to be full citizens of the nation. In some states, women were allowed to vote in local elections. However, in federal politics the voices of women were ignored or promptly silenced. Women did, however, work behind the scenes to help transform American society and were solidly behind the abolitionist movement. Nevertheless, feminism in America was until very recently the realm of the white and wealthy classes. The unique concerns and considerations… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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APA Style

American Experience.  (2005, July 20).  Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/american-experience/30950

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"American Experience."  20 July 2005.  Web.  29 October 2020. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/american-experience/30950>.

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"American Experience."  Essaytown.com.  July 20, 2005.  Accessed October 29, 2020.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/american-experience/30950.