One of the fundamental American ideals is freedom. So fundamental is the idea of freedom that the founding fathers performed an unprecedented act in word history - they declared independence from Great Britain in 1776 in the name of the liberty and equality. While some view this as a profound statement and a fundamental break from the past, the implications of European society “stratified sharply by social origin and race” (Roark 45) were merely codified and continued, not only in the colonies but beyond the ratification of the US Constitution and served to undermine the very ideals the American Revolution. Failure by the founding fathers to define citizenship facilitated social and economic inequality and exploitation and denied freedom for women and blacks in America.
The early colonial period in the British Colonies displayed stark social inequalities in gender that went unchanged after the ratification of the Constitution. Women were treated as second class citizens in colonial society and still could not achieve equal rights following the ratification 200 years later. The case of Anne Hutchinson in 1637 demonstrates the challenges that women faced in this period, when she was put on trial for violating laws that forbade women from speaking in public or teaching to men older than her. The social and legal mores of women are stated throughout the transcripts of the trail rancorously, referring to Hutchinson as “more bold than a man, though in understanding and judgment, inferior to many women” (Hutchinson, 2). This passage highlights the inequality of gender in the 17th century. Following the American Revolution things had not greatly improved for women as evidenced in Judith Sargent Murray’s Es...
... middle of paper ...
Toqueville’s incisive observations about the state of man in the United States reveal the continued pattern of inequality. The barriers of education and law were particularly salient to the plight of slaves and black people at the time, given the lack of legal representation or rights and the Constitution not recognizing people of color as citizens of the United States.
In closing, the US Constitution was a result of the efforts of the founding fathers’ attempt to create a government ruled by the people, for the people, following the American Revolution. The nation they created was to be a limited government built upon liberty and equality. However, liberty and equality were not offered to black people, women or Native Americans and therefore remained a revolutionary promise unfulfilled for much of the country leading up to the civil war.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Within the Ancient world, political leaders manipulated the balance between religion and politics to further their own power. In particular, Gaius Octavius (63 BC – 14 AD) later known as Imperator Caesar Divi Filius Augustus, exploited the ‘imperial cult’ as a political tool within the Roman Empire. Termed by modern historians, the imperial cult was a combination of local religious cults where people worshipped the emperor as a deity who received divine honours exceeding all other living entities.... [tags: Ancient Rome, Roman Empire, Augustus]
753 words (2.2 pages)
- The ruling elite of the Ottoman Empire were unique, because they were a foreign influence, which shaped the way they were perceived and how they displayed their identity. This was because; they were Devirshirme, recruits of the child levy system. They served in either the palace service or the Janissary military system. Their status as the ruling elite was bittersweet, filled with pros and cons. The Janissaries formed a powerful interest group, which allowed them to project their power to the Sultan as well as the people.... [tags: Imperial, Ottoman, classism,]
514 words (1.5 pages)
- Burbank and Cooper in their book Empires in World History portray the evolution of power and the development of different states. They elaborate on how powerful cities and states imposed their rules and waged conquest on surrounding territories. Political dynasties developed strongly among states inspired by religious, politic and economic trends. The Han dynasty of China and the Imperial Rome were some of the powerful states that developed during the third century. The two states adopted different strategies and ideas in developing of their emperor.... [tags: Ancient Rome, Roman Empire, Han Dynasty]
872 words (2.5 pages)
- The encounter of civilizations has always included the transfer of resources. Trade is the most common method of this transfer, but over time, the movement of wealth has coincided with the emergence and development of empires. Kingdoms with great military power capable of subjugating others and controlling energy systems to create economic order is what underpinned ancient imperialism. The forms of energy systems and the methods used by empires to dictate the economic order has been evolving over time, but some fundamental principles of imperialism have remained relatively consistent.... [tags: Imperialism, British Empire, Colonialism]
1159 words (3.3 pages)
- Alexander the Great Imperial Examples Alexander with his strategic brilliance and charismatic young leadership went to the edge and back while traversing what he knew of his world, it must have been a different world all of those thousands of years ago. Alexander was born in Pella Greece during the summer months of 356 he lived through the years leading up to 323 BC when he tragically lost his life. “…Alexander was marked out as the crown prince. As the son of Olympias, the blood of the royal house of Epirus flowed in his veins, and he referred his lineage to Andromache and Achilles on his mother’s side, to Hercules on his father’s.” Alexander made great symbolic gestures alluding to of hi... [tags: Alexander the Great, Achaemenid Empire]
1382 words (3.9 pages)
- Immigrants in alien countries are supposed to be the wretched of the earth. In the host countries they feel a sense of dislocation, disintegration, disorientation, unbelongingness and dispossession. A sense of alienation comes to prevail over their life. They are rendered psychologically, politically, existentially and metaphysically unstable in the newly adopted country. They, being uprooted from their native culture try to be accepted by the natives of the host country, but they are utterly shocked by the incompatible culture, way of life and ill treatment and racial slurs at the hands of the inhabitants of the host country.... [tags: immigration, racial prejudice, ethnicity]
1953 words (5.6 pages)
- When studying the British Empire it is important to look at the different phases and period of the Empire. Many Historians take the view that the British Empire can be split into two ‘Empires’: the ‘First Empire’ and the ‘Second Empire’. The credibility and legitimacy of this theory is often debated. The theory involves the belief that the British Empire can split into a ‘first and second empire’ following the American Revolutionary War, the main factors being the change of politic and economic policies, with a change of focus in British colonial expansion, from North America to Africa and Asia, the main changes in polices being the economic change and free trade, and the rise of the imperi... [tags: British Empire, Colonialism, Imperialism, Slavery]
1395 words (4 pages)
- The Significance of Women in the Imperial Family During the time of the Roman Empire women were not allowed to play any part in the political life of the empire. However women were still able to influence powerful men and manipulate them to use their power for the wants of woman. The most powerful woman in the roman society was either the wife of a principate or the mother of one. Examples of influential woman in the imperial family include Livia Drusilla, Julia Agrippina and Octivia.... [tags: Roman History Roman Empire]
2083 words (6 pages)
- An Imperial Presidency Writers of the constitution intended for congress to be the most powerful branch of government. They invested in the president: the powers of the monarch, but subjected him to the democratic principles of accountability which was ensured by a complex system of parliamentary and judicial checks and balances. For over a century the US got along fine with a relatively weak president whose major role was simply to carry out the laws and policies made by congress, however, there has been erosion in this system.... [tags: Papers]
1416 words (4 pages)
- Imperialism has existed in the world since the beginning of government all together, but this practice took a dramatic turn in the latter half of the nineteenth century. New inventions, modern thinking, and stronger governments all made imperialism easier. Now thousands of miles could be conquered in a matter of months; an empire could have a stronger hold on a colony than ever before. The result was that by the end of the century, at least one European nation had a claim to nearly every piece of land on the Earth.... [tags: essays research papers fc]
1884 words (5.4 pages)
- Calculators And The Classroom : A Help Or A Crutch
- How Smartphone Has Affected Children
- Meditation Allows For Yourself And Your Environment
- The Bolshevik Revolution And The Soviet Revolution
- The Use Of Digital Marketing At Ing Wholesale Germany
- The Shakespeare 's All Of Us : A Monumental, Multitudinous, Premeditated, And Most Important