Slavery/ Race In America term paper 11827

Slavery term papers
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Throughout the history of the United States, the relationship between white and black people has been an issue that has greatly divided the nation. Race is an important issue to many people in America. The race issue is very influential because of the fact that our country has had so many problems throughout its history. In the chapter, "Gone With the Wind" from the text Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen, Loewen quotes Studs Terkel as saying, "race is our 'American obsession'." In the reading of "Who is Black? One Nation's Definition" by F. James Davis, race is discussed also as an important part of the American culture.

When Studs Terkel writes " race is our 'American obsession'." He is saying that the citizens of America have a preoccupation with race and race relations. For example, the Civil War was fought due to the relationships between blacks and whites. The Civil War caused the deaths of almost as many Americans as those who died in all other wars combined. "Black-white relations was the principal focus of Reconstruction after the Civil War; America's failure to allow African Americans equal rights led eventually to the struggle for civil rights a century later."(Loewen, 132) Had the Federal government properly written the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, the earlier battle for civil rights would not have taken over one hundred years. African Ameerricans would have been equal and history would have been a lot different.

Uncle Tom's Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe was written during an era where white people were in denial that slavery was harmful to the black race. The novel was an eye opener for many whites. "Uncle Tom's Cabin presents slavery as an evil to be opposed."(Loewen, 133) The novel told the people of America that the black people were not supposed to be slaves. They were not content to be slaves and that the social order should be not based on race.

Even today, the people of the United States use a person's race and the color of their skin to form prejudices. People cannot see a person without seeing their skin color or race. The people of this country are obsessed with race. The one drop rule "reflects the long experience with slavery and later with Jim Crow segregation"(Davis, 37) This means that if a person has one drop of colored blood, or one black ancestor they are considered black. The one-drop rule applies to no other group than American blacks. (Davis, 41) However in The Passing of the Great Race written in 1916, " The one drop rule should be applied not only to blacks but also to all the other ethnic groups considered biologically inferior races, such as Hindus, Asians in general, Jews, Italians, and other Southern and Eastern European peoples."(Grant, 40) It is unique in that the one-drop rule is found only in the United States and not in any other country in the world. It is an embarrassment that in supposedly the best nation in the world, such a policy of racism is able to exist.

Therefore all of our history is engraved with the issue of race relations. Race relations have been an important part of the history of the United States. Throughout history, race has been a major factor in many of the important events in our nations past. The level of racism has been going down since Reconstruction though there are still problems concerning race in the United States. Truly our nations past proves that America is obsessed with race.


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