Thesis for an essay
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In the thesis, the American frontier established liberty by releasing Americans from European mindsets and eroding old, dysfunctional customs. The frontier had no need for standing armies, established churches, aristocrats or nobles. There was no landed gentry who controlled most of the land and charged heavy rents and fees. Frontier land was practically free for the taking.
Turner’s emphasis on the importance of the frontier in shaping American character influenced the interpretation found in thousands of scholarly histories. American history, and the geographical space of the land that became the United States. Successive generations moved further inland, shifting the lines of settlement and wilderness, but preserving the essential tension between the two. Turner saw the land frontier was ending, since the U. Census of 1890 had officially stated that the American frontier had broken up. He sounded an alarming note, speculating as to what this meant for the continued dynamism of American society as the source of U.
Historians, geographers, and social scientists have thesis for an essay frontier-like conditions in other countries, with an eye on the Turnerian model. South Africa, Canada, Russia, Brazil, Argentina and Australia—and even ancient Rome—had long frontiers that were also settled by pioneers. Other historians in the 1890s had begun to explore the meaning of the frontier, such as Theodore Roosevelt, who had a different theory. Roosevelt argued that the battles between the trans-Appalachian pioneers and the Indians in the «Winning of the West» had forged a new people, the American race. Turner’s thesis quickly became popular among intellectuals. It explained why the American people and American government were so different from their European counterparts.
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It was popular among New Dealers—Franklin Roosevelt and his top aides thought in terms of finding new frontiers. Many believed that the end of the frontier represented the beginning of a new stage in American life and that the United States must expand overseas. However, others viewed this interpretation as the impetus for a new wave in the history of United States imperialism. Turner never published a major book on the frontier for which he did 40 years of research. However his ideas presented in his graduate seminars at Wisconsin and Harvard influenced many areas of historiography. Turner’s frontier thesis influenced popular histories, motion pictures, and novels, which characterize the West in terms of individualism, frontier violence, and rough justice.
Disneyland’s Frontierland of the mid to late 20th century reflected the myth of rugged individualism that celebrated what was perceived to be the American heritage. Subsequent critics, historians, and politicians have suggested that other ‘frontiers,’ such as scientific innovation, could serve similar functions in American development. Historians have noted that John F. Kennedy in the early 1960s explicitly called upon the ideas of the frontier. Kolb and Hoddeson argue that during the heyday of Kennedy’s «New Frontier,» the physicists who built the Fermi Labs explicitly sought to recapture the excitement of the old frontier.
They argue that, «Frontier imagery motivates Fermilab physicists, and a rhetoric remarkably similar to that of Turner helped them secure support for their research. Frederick Jackson Turner: historian, scholar, teacher. The Frontier Thesis: Valid Interpretation of American History? Frederick Jackson Turner: Strange Roads Going Down. Beyond the Frontier: Midwestern Historians in the American Century.
Does the Frontier Experience Make America Exceptional? Rereading Frederick Jackson Turner: «The Significance of the Frontier in American History». Hofstadter, Richard, and Seymour Martin Lipset, eds. The Significance of the Frontier in American History». Mikesell, «Comparative Studies in Frontier History,» in Richard Hofstadter and Seymour Martin Lipset, eds. Mateship and Individualism in Modern Australian Drama».
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