Expansion has long been a part of American history. From the Louisiana Purchase to the addition of Alaska and Hawaii, expansion has played a large role in the development of our country. However, with expansion playing the role it has in our nation’s history, imperialism was bound to make an appearance at some point. Imperialism is when a nation uses inhibited territory it has acquired to extend its power. It was prominent in the late 1800s and the early 1900s. But what was the more important factor in expanding foreign policy and imperialism during this time period, self-interest or idealism? If the evidence is examined, this becomes crystal clear. Self-interest was the most important factor in driving American foreign policy during this time …show more content…
First, there’s an editorial from the Washington Post in 1896, which says, “A new consciousness seems to have come upon us— the consciousness of strength—and with it a new appetite, the yearning to show our strength. . . . Ambition, interest, land hunger, pride, the mere joy of fighting, whatever it may be, we are animated by a new sensation.” This is implying that we wanted to show this new strength through expansion. It’s a prime example of manifest destiny and it was in that nation’s best interest to do so. Next, there is a speech from Albert J. Beveridge in 1898. In it, Beveridge says, “Today our industrial society is congested; there are more workers than there is work; there is more capital than there is investment. . . . Therefore we must find new markets for our produce, new occupation for our capital, new work for our labor. . . .” This meant that we had to expand in order to find more jobs for workers and more markets for our products, which was in that nation’s best interest. Both of these greatly show that imperialism was in the United States’ own self-interest at the …show more content…
There’s also an essay from 1919 that was originally from 1898 by William Graham Sumner. In the essay, he writes, “[The] reason why liberty, of which we Americans talk so much, is a good thing is that it means leaving people to live out their own lives in their own way, while we do the same.” What he meant by this is that the nation could let people live their own lives if they expanded, and it’s liberty to do so. He also brought up Americans talking about liberty, so this would also be in America’s self-interest. Finally, there’s Theodore Roosevelt’s message to Congress in 1904. In it, Roosevelt writes, “We would interfere with them only in the last resort, and then only if it became evident that their inability or unwillingness to do justice at home and abroad had violated the rights of the United States or had invited foreign aggression to the detriment of the entire body of American nations.” He mentioned “our southern neighbors” at the beginning of this message, which was who he referred to here. However, he specifically mentioned the rights of the United States in his message, and that he would only interfere with Mexico if he felt they violated the rights of the United States, which quite clearly showed self-interest. With this message in addition to all other documents mentioned, the main factor with foreign policy was clearly
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Expansion has played a large part in American history, coming with a collection of problems and triumphs. Walter LaFeber discusses American Expansionism through U.S. policymaking even discussing how and why he believes it should be more conservative as he claims this to be the backbone of all of his writings.1 Also it’s important to define how he uses the term expansionism as he states “I have used the term expansionism in discussing American attempts to find trade and investment opportunities in areas where the United States did not want to exert formal political control”.2 The New Empire: An Interpretation of American Expansion 1860-1898 by Walter LaFeber, examined the period of 1860-1898 of the “American overseas empire” by addressing the
The United States Imperialism started in the late 19th century. There were several reasons that this era occurred such as, economic competition, military competition, and political motives. The first reason is economic competition this was one of the key reasons for the United States wanting to expand. The industrial revolution was a big contributor of the need for expansion this was needed so that we could have more area to produce equipment for our military. This was a really good thing because our military forces became much more advanced than our opponents and it is still true today that we have the strongest and spend the most money on our military.
Manifest Destiny, a phrase coined in 1845, expressed the philosophy that drove 19 th -century US territorial expansion. Manifest Destiny held that the United States was destined – by God, its advocates believed – to expand its dominion and spread democracy and capitalism across the entire North American continent. The Manifest Destiny was known as the “sea to shining sea.” It was a belief that the US should own all territory between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The westward expansion of the United States during the 19 th -century was not limited to North America, but rather included an ongoing push to establish a stronger US presence in and across the Pacific Ocean.
Imagine waking up one day and being forced to drop every custom and tradition you’ve ever known. This is what many countries had to endure when Americans decided it would be okay to imperialize them. Imperialism is the act of extending a country 's power and influence through diplomacy or military force. By the late 1800’s America started imperializing weaker countries. Americans were not justified in barging into weaker countries, and taking over for their own selfish gain.
”According to the quotation, the expansion was carried out in order to advance civilization and subdue foreign powers that dominated the United States. During the imperial era, the United States produced justifications for its actions, but these justifications frequently did not correspond to the real circumstances in the country. “Merchants began to publicly endorse imperialism because they hoped that the acquisition of new territories would provide new markets to offset the loss of revenues caused by the new round of European tariffs.” The quotation discusses the real justification for people's support of imperialism.
As America entered the Gilded Age, its urban population grew, nativists resisted minorities, government corruption was rampant, and immigrant populations increased substantially (Shi and Tindall 626-644). Government corruption was exemplified by the patronage system, under which loyal supporters of politicians were given government jobs (Shi and Tindall 641). Most of the immigrants from this period were from southern and eastern European countries, such as Russia, Poland, Greece, and Italy, and were judged as inferior by many Americans because of their cultural differences (Shi and Tindall 630). Immigrants also caused tension during WWI because of their lingering loyalties to nations on either side of the conflict (Chapter 21 Overview).
Title: Imperialist Considerations in American Foreign Policy, 1898-1908: A Transformative Era Between 1898 and 1908, the United States experienced a momentous shift in its foreign policy, transitioning from a historically isolationist nation to a global power with imperial ambitions. This transformation was driven by a convergence of domestic and international factors, fueling the nation's desire to expand its influence beyond its borders. Amidst this dynamic environment, imperialist considerations played a pivotal role in shaping American foreign policy decisions. The acquisition of overseas territories and colonies, the pursuit of economic interests, and the desire to spread American values all illustrate the extent to which imperialism
Before the 20th century the United States was an isolationist nation but around the late 19th century America decided to convert into an imperialist power. They had numerous reasons to shift into being an imperialist nation. America didn’t want to begin imperializing to settle and live in the nations they were taking over, they already had America for that reason, they wanted to adopt these nations for what they had to offer, which was many things. America saw an opportunity to improving their nation and took it. Even if there were many causes for America to imperialize, three of them stood out the most.
In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s America started expanding abroad to try and enlarge our borders. However this expansion ended up creating more problems for the US. In the end America lost more than they gained all due to American imperialism. Imperialism is when a bigger nation takes over a smaller or weaker nation. When America did this they thought it would make them stronger but it ended up making then weaker and causing them to lose the allies they once had before they imperialized the smaller nations that once trusted them.
Was American expansion justified during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s? This was a debate that Americans fought over then and still now fight over now. There were two types of people some were for expansion and others were against expansion of the U.S. Both sides of the story will be well explained in this essay. First, this will explain the people for expansion’s side.
Imperialism means that one country controls all political, economic, or cultural life in another country or region. Europe successfully did this in the Americas and established colonies in South Asia, Africa, and China. Although this would seem like a substantial amount of power, Europe did not gain much influence until later on. Once Europe recognized their own growing control, they embarked on what is now called the “New Imperialism”. Many components played into this seemingly rapid success, but one significant reason was that of the
In the late 1800’s America started to expand across the world. America went to areas like Alaska, Hawaii, Japan, and the Philippines. The U.S. wanted to expand and tried to annex many countries. Many people wonder if the American expansion was justifiable or not. Alaska, a piece of land bought by the U.S. was called “Seward’s Folly” because when William Seward bought it America thought that there was nothing there.
And lastly the desire for a new frontier to settle in order to maintain America’s identity and prosperity. All three of the examples: economically, politically/military, and culturally can simply explain why and how America became an imperialist nation in the late
During the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century United States main goal was to imperialize other territories. After the Spanish- American War, the United States became an imperialist power by annexing the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Hawaii and Samoa. Americans also developed overseas trade with China and Japan. The United States proposition was to expand their region because they wanted to influence other nations for new trading locations, more resources and the increase of military protection. In spite of the fact that they had the same proposition, their political and economical motives were departed.