Radical and Reform Movements in American History

1999 WordsJun 16, 20188 Pages
Introduction The course began in the year 1789, a significant year of transition for the United States. A decade or so prior, the United States was embroiled in a conflict over the inability of a foreign power to govern an overseas territories without proper representation in the foreign power’s government. This conflict, The American Revolution, may be the first significant radical movement in the history of the United States. However, the American Revolution led to unprecedented reforms in North American society. The Civil War, another significant example of a radical movement in the United States, began as a conflict over the issue of states rights. However, it quickly escalated into an issue of the legality and morality of slavery and…show more content…
The Union sought to overwhelmed and overthrew the Confederate government in order to succeed in reuniting the Union and abolishing slavery. This war challenged the Southern society’s dependence on slavery and sought to rectify the ills of the system through a violent overthrow of it. President Lincoln, in speaking on the necessity of the war to Congress and for the abolishment of slavery vowed, “We assure freedom to the free-honorable alike in what we give and what we preserve.” In fact, the abolishment of slavery can be considered to be the last remnants of radicalism from the American Revolution. The American Republic was founded upon the discourse of liberating the American colonists from the monarchial master of Great Britain. However, the reformers of the Republic (the Founding Fathers) specifically, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, knew that not handling the issue of slavery would eventually lead to the dissolution of the Union. They knew of their hypocrisy in criticizing one lord on oppression and political and economic enslavement while enslaving the entire existence of Black Americans in the United States. Reform Movements Reformers often are remembered more favorably in history these radicals. To reform something means to “change into an improved form or condition or to put an end to (an evil) by enforcing or introducing a better method or course of action.” Professor Walters describes
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