Andrew Carnegie 's A Man Of Change And Philanthropy Essay

Andrew Carnegie 's A Man Of Change And Philanthropy Essay

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As a man who lived on both sides of the economic spectrum of his time, Andrew Carnegie saw himself as a man of change and philanthropy. He believed himself to be the one to diminish the theory of Social Darwinism and help other lower class workers go from “rags to riches.” Carnegie recognized the fairness and legitimacy of America’s rising system of social classes, however he wanted to do his part to help those who were struggling because of his past as a lower class man. While Carnegie had good intentions, his actions were not made out to be as helpful as he had planned.
The Puck cartoon develops a satirical opinion on Carnegie’s generous donation of a lake to Prinecton. The Puck cartoon makes Carnegie out to be giver of all gifts with his caption, “His gift of a lake to Princeton suggests other deficiencies of nature which Carnegie may supply.” The cartoon shows the many requests to Carnegie, including the Eskimos having their own beach, sending a new mountain to Chicago by way of mail, and giving a Milwaukee a beer geyser. The idea of these requests is to prove the unnecessary spending of the Princeton Lake. While the lake may have been a lovely addition to the area, it was not what Princeton absolutely needed at that time. This is the same for the cartoon as well. While the Eskimos wanted their beach, Chicago wanted a mountain, and Milwaukee desired a beer geyser, they were not requests that absolutely had to be met right away. There were more important matters to address and more important places that needed Carnegie’s generous donations.
The Puck cartoon portrays what Carnegie’s employees thought about his lavish donations compared to his lower pay rates. Carnegie believed that he could help his workers by giving donating ...


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...ing the satire of Carnegie’s donation to Princeton can be interpreted many ways, but it is clear that it is meant to be a form of satire. Carnegie was a man of wealth with a poor past, and he intended to help his lower class workers by showing them a high class and cultured way of living. After living in the lower class himself, it would have been understandable if Carnegie related to his workers and gave them direct payments, however he took the route of indirectly giving them cultured experiences that they would never have the time to attend. Proponents of Social Darwinism would have had clashed opinions with Carnegie’s employees in regards to this cartoon, because of their differences in believing how wealth can be achieved. Overall, it is very clear that the Puck cartoon easily could have caused large dispute between the rich, the poor, and the philanthropists.

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