A series of reform efforts transformed the American society between 1890-1920This period is known as the Progressive Era.Why?Because of the social problems that had resulted during this time of urbanization, industrialization (and any other ations) ‘- the poverty of the working class and the filth and crime of the urban society, etc.
Although progressivism appeared to be diverse and even dissimilar in movement, they did share a Shared Assumptions• A Belief in Progress—a direct, ordered progress in opposition to the laissez faire assumptions.
Varieties of Progressivism• Economic: Anti Monopoly—What were they afraid of? What did they want?• Social: Importance of Social Cohesion-Social Bonds—What does social interdependence( the key to improving society) mean? Creates concerns about the “victims” of industrialization—who are they? What had been the tendency?• Ideology: Faith in Knowledge-Science and expertise—social order is no accident—life is complicated now –it should be studied
• All strands helped to bring order and progress and reform
Who were the Progressives?• Unlike the populists…they came from the Middle Class• They were journalists, social workers, educators, politicians, and members of the clergy.
Muckrakers• Among the first people to articulate Progressive ideas was a group of crusading journalists who investigated social, economic conditions and political corruption-they were called muckrakers. Newspapers started to complete- who could expose the most corruption and scandal.
How were the muckrakers different from Yellow journalist?
Famous Muckrakers• Ida Tarbell- Standard Oil--“they never played fair”
Muckrakers• Jacob Riis• http://youtu.be/EACoIbokOcc
Lincoln Steffens- The Shame of the Cities• Wrote on corrupt practices of urban political machines
Upton Sinclair• He wrote a famous book called The Jungle— about the horrors of the meat packing plants in Chicago. Became a best seller and changed the industry.
• Some focused on the social problems such as crime, literacy, alcohol abuse, health and safety and child labor.• John Spargo- The Bitter Cry of the Children presented details evidence on child labor conditions.
• Many adult workers also worked in dangerous and difficult conditions as well.• Triangle shirtwaist factory fire-Story of US• http://youtu.be/UdNYqBP_5q4• 100 years later• http://youtu.be/BVkc4AZUUKY
• The Ballad of the Dead Girls• SCARCE had they brought the bodies down• Across the withered floor,• Than Max Rogosky thundered at The District Leader’s door.• Scarce had the white-lipped mothers come• To search the fearful noon,• Than little Max stood shivering• In Tom McTodd’s saloon!• In Tom McTodd’s saloon he stood,• Beside the silver bar,• Where any honest lad may stand, And sell his vote at par.• “Ten years I’ve paid the System’s tax,” The words fell, quivering, raw;• “And now I want the thing I bought— Protection from the law!”• The Leader smiled a twisted smile: “Your doors were locked,” he said.• “You’ve overstepped the limit, Max— A hundred women.… dead!”• Then Max Rogosky gripped the bar And shivered where he stood.• “You listen now to me,” he cried, “Like business fellers should!•
• “I’ve paid for all my hundred dead, I’ve paid, I’ve paid, I’ve paid.• ”His ragged laughter rang, and died— For he was sore afraid.• “I’ve paid for wooden hall and stair, I’ve paid to strain my floors,• I’ve paid for rotten fire-escapes, For all my bolted doors.• “Your fat inspectors came and came— I crossed their hands with gold.• And now I want the thing I bought, The thing the System sold.• ” The District Leader filled a glass With whiskey from the bar,• (The little silver counter where He bought men’s souls at par.)• And well he knew that he must give The thing that he had sold,• Else men should doubt the System’s word, Keep back the System’s gold.• The whiskey burned beneath his tongue: “A hundred women dead!• I guess the Boss can fix it up, Go home—and hide,” he said.. . . . . . . .• All day they brought the bodies down From Max Rogosky’s place—• And oh, the fearful touch of flame On hand and breast and face!• All day the white-lipped mothers came To search the sheeted dead;• And Horror strode the blackened walls, Where Death had walked in red.• But Max Rogosky did not weep. (He knew that tears were vain.)• He paid the System’s price, and lived• To lock his doors again.
The Social Gospel• A sentiment emerged from the outrage at the social and economic injustice, combined with a humanitarian sense of social responsibility helped produce what came to be known as the Social Gospel.• All true Christians should be concerned with the plight of the poor
• Salvation Army, YMCA, and the YWCA—fusing religion and reform.• Walter Rauschenbusch—believed in the power of Christianity to make social reform- “Translate the Darwin evolutionary themes into religious faith and you have the doctrine of the Kingdom of God”.• Father John Ryan- believed that all could work together toward the evolution of a more just society—rather than individuals
• There were those who saw the Social Gospel as just some people moralizing over the human condition, but it didn’t hurt to have a religious component on your side if you were tying to make changes.
Influence of the Environment• Nature vs Nuture• unhealthy environment =Ignorance + poverty + crime
The Settlement House Movement http://youtu.be/Tw4GZeABlNI• Born of the notion that the poor conditions in which most lived explained social problems.• Jane Addams-Hull House-Chicago, 1889• Social Work grew from this
The Allure of Expertise• Progressives placed a high value on knowledge and expertise. Everything could be studied and analyzed.• Requirements were now being established for many professions• American Medical Association• American Bar Association• New Middle Class—The Professionals
Women and Reform• The New Woman p. 727• The Clubwoman p. 727
The Suffrage Movement• Suffrage—the right to vote• Women suffrage was an important issue for progressives• Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott worked hard for the right to vote. Finally in 1920, the 19th amendment was added to the constitution guaranteeing women the right to vote.
The Debate For Suffrage Against Suffrage•A natural right •Women in her own “sphere”-•Bring their special and distinct first wives and mothersvirtues •Threat of the natural order of•Help with the temperance civilizationmovement •Many linked suffrage with•Peace advocates—war promiscuity, looseness andobsolete? neglect of children•If blacks and immigrants vote, •Too emotionalwhy not well educated •Just too radical an ideawomen?
Progressives worked on Making Government Efficient• One group of progressives focused on making government more efficient. They believed many problems could be solved by the government if the government worked properly.• Robert LaFollette –Gov. of Wisconsin—The Wisconsin Idea- “laboratory of progressivism”—regulation of RR and utilities, workplace reforms, state taxes
• Urban reformers gradually tried to lessen the power of the political machines--• New forms of governance—Commission Plan, city manager plan—Galveston was one of the first successes after the 1900 Hurricane
Statehouse Progressivism• To force state legislators to respond to voters, three new reforms were introduced in many states.• Initiative—allowed citizens to (initiate) introduce a law that goes on a ballot—bypass the leg.• Referendum—people refer a proposed piece of legislation to be submitted for approval• Recall—allowed voters to demand a special election or remove an elected official from office.
• Direct Election of Senators• 17th amendment –people in the states elected their own senators.
African Americans and Reform• One social question that received little attention from the white progressives was race.• But African Americans themselves brought changes.
Booker T Washington & W.E.B. DuboisBorn a slave, his message was Educated and first to“put down your bucket where graduate fromyou are “ Harvard—his messageConcentrate on achieving “work for civil rights”economic goals—summed up Founder of the NAACPhis views in a speech :Atlanta “color discriminationCompromise is barbarism”Stressed education and Launched the Niagaravocation Movement
Crusades for Order and Reform• Reformers directed much of their attention to moral issues—curb prostitution, limit divorce and eliminate alcohol.
Prohibition Movement• Many believed that alcohol was responsible for many of the problems in American society.• Women’s Christian Temperance Union and Anti Saloon League• Amendment 18—Prohibition-Banning the manufacturing, sale and consumption of alcohol.• http://youtu.be/bJdKK6L8Z2o
Immigration• Many agreed the growing numbers of immigrants created social problems but much disagreement on what to do.• Help to assimilate• Limit the flow of immigrants• Eugenics-The Dillingham Report
Rise of the Socialist Party• Dedicated to the welfare of the working class• Platform more radical that of the Progressives: public ownership of the RR, utilities, even major industries like oil and steel
Socialism• The Socialist Party grew during this time, more than at any other time.• Also disagreed on how and what to change• Eugene Debs received nearly 1 million votes for President in the 1912 election.• Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)-a large union that championed the cause of the unskilled—militant radical union—founder Bill Hayward
Decentralization and Regulation• Many reformers agreed with the threat to the national economy due to excessive corporate power.• Louis Brandies— business must be regulated to ensure that large combinations did not emerge.• Others distinguished between “good” and “bad” trusts.
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