Essays for the American Pageant, 14th Ed.

11068 Words Dec 7th, 2012 45 Pages
Essays for The American Pageant, 14th ed.

Part One

1. From the perspective of Native Americans, the Spanish and English empires in America had more similarities than differences. Assess the validity of this generalization.

Response Strategy
It is important to develop a clear thesis on the validity of the statement at the outset of the essay. A good essay could be developed on either side of the issue or in support of a middle-of –the-road position. Supporting paragraphs should be developed to build the position chosen. Both the Spanish and the English treated the Native Americans as inferiors, thought it important to bring them Christianity, sought to profit economically from relations with the Native Americans, and
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Mercantilist ideas emphasized that nations should strive toward economic self-sufficiency and that the power of a nation should be measured by the amount of its gold and silver reserves. Ultimately, a nation should arrange to produce everything it needed for its own citizens and sell surpluses to for hard currency. This metal reserve, in turn, could be used in emergency situations to pay for wars or solve shortages. Colonies, like those England had in North America, played an important part in this economic equation. They could help England become self-sufficient by producing things that could not be made or grown there such as tobacco, sugar, and tall masts for ships. Colonists could also provide a market for British goods, particularly manufactured products, such as woolen cloth or beaver hats. This meant that the home economy in England could become more fully developed, while the colonial economies were relegated to a role of supplying raw materials. To insure that the American colonies would contribute to this overall sense of British wealth, various Navigation Acts were passed beginning in 1650 to regulate trade between the colonies, England, and the rest of the world. In many cases, ships carrying American products to other European countries had to stop in England first to pay duties before continuing onward. Also, goods traveling to and from America had to be
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