American Experience Term Paper

Pages: 3 (884 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Native Americans

American Literature

The End of Savagery: The Abolition of Traditional, American Indian Societies to pave way for the White American's "New World" Society

America between the 18th and 19th centuries experienced a transition from being a traditional to a gradually modernizing society. With increased capabilities to be more mobile and travel other territories all over the world, the Western nations -- European nations, in particular -- sought to discover new societies and territories wherein they can establish new societies, extensions of societies that they already have in their own respective countries. With the objective of expanding their power and influence around the world, these Western nations found success when they discovered the territory they called the "New World," the territory that is now known as the American nation.

As the white conquerors set to establish their colonies in the New World, a radical change was implemented, wherein the territory's early and original inhabitants, the American Indians, faced competition and conflict against the conquerors. As the European conquerors lived in the New World, a corresponding program of eradicating the traditional societies established by the American Indians was implemented. Similarly, annihilation of tribes who disagreed or disapproved of the Europeans' plans to conquer their new territory was also supported and encouraged.Get full Download Microsoft Word File access
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Term Paper on American Experience Assignment

These dynamics that occurred during these periods are mirrored in the works of Nathaniel Hawthorne, Washington Irving, and James Fenimore Cooper. In the literary texts that they authored, the short story "Young Goodman Brown," "The Devil and Tom Walker," and "The Last of the Mohicans," respectively, all have expressed their disapproval and criticism of the radical eradication of American Indian societies as the white man set out to establish his own colony -- eventually, a new society and nation -- in the New World that is America. In these works, the theme of preservation of early traditional cultures -- in this case, the preservation of American Indian cultures and societies -- is dominantly illustrated and analyzed. That is, in the face of accelerated progress and development, the authors remind their readers that one must not forget ("eradicate") the heritage from which a nation traces its roots from.

Hawthorne in the short story "Young Goodman Brown" effectively showed through symbolism the white man's "persecution" of the American Indians, considered as barbaric and savage in their ways and traditions. The story symbolized American Indians as the "devil," once referring to the devil as 'devilish Indian.' The prejudice is apparent in Goodman's attitude, as he set out to find in the forest the 'devil.' His objective of searching the devil in the forest is interpreted as the persecution of the White Man against the American Indian.… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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"American Experience."  Essaytown.com.  September 13, 2006.  Accessed January 18, 2021.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/american-experience/91301.