Essay on Anti-Federalist vs Federalist

Essay on Anti-Federalist vs Federalist

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After winning the Revolutionary War and sovereign control of their home country from the British, Americans now had to deal with a new authoritative issue: who was to rule at home? In the wake of this massive authoritative usurpation, there were two primary views of how the new American government should function. Whereas part of the nation believed that a strong, central government would be the most beneficial for the preservation of the Union, others saw a Confederation of sovereign state governments as an option more supportive of the liberties American’s fought so hard for in the Revolution. Those in favor of a central government, the Federalists, thought this form of government was necessary to ensure national stability, unity and influence concerning foreign perception. Contrastingly, Anti-Federalists saw this stronger form of government as potentially oppressive and eerily similar to the authority’s tendencies of the British government they had just fought to remove. However, through the final ratification of the Constitution, new laws favoring state’s rights and the election at the turn of the century, one can say that the Anti-Federalist view of America prevails despite making some concessions in an effort to preserve the Union.
According to the Federalists in the early stages of the American republic, a strong central government was necessary to provide uniform supervision to the states thus aiding in the preservation of the Union. This necessity for a more organized central government was a result of the ineffectiveness of the Article of Confederation’s government that was without a unifying government body. One component of this philosophy was the creation of an executive and other federal branche...


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Bradburn, Douglas. “State v. Federal.” In The Citizenship Revolution. Charlottesville, 2009.
Brutus. “Anti-Federalist VI.” In The Antifederalist Papers. New York, 1788.
Cato. “Anti-Federalist IV.” In The Antifederalist Papers. New York, 1788.
Madison, James. “Bill of Rights.” In The United States Constitution. Washington D.C., 1791.
Madison, James. “Federalist #45.” In The Federalist Papers. Virginia, 1788.
Taylor, Alan. “From Fathers to Friends of the People: Political Personas in the Early Republic.” In The Journal of the Early Republic 11, no. 4. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1991.
Wood, Gordon. The Radicalism of the American Revolution. New York: Vintage Books, 1992.

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