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American Freedom Essay

  • Submitted by: yasminxoxox
  • on March 24, 2012
  • Category: History
  • Length: 518 words

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Below is an essay on "American Freedom" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

American historian Eric Foner writes about how the idea of freedom in America has altered throughout history in one of his bestsellers, The Story of American Freedom. Prize winning Foner covers a long period of time of American history and expresses his thoughts in a remarkable way informing readers about the struggles America has suffered in the search of freedom. From beginning to end Foner argues about what the actual meaning of “freedom” is. To majority of Americans freedom means “independence” and “the power to be able to do whatever one wants.” According to Foner, freedom “embodies not a single idea but a complex of values,” he says, “it’s meaning is simultaneously an intellectual, social, economic, and political contest.” (Foner introduction xv) Foner does an outstanding job at changing the definition of freedom by proving his argument with factual information and stories from the past.
    Throughout the book, Foner uses many historical scenarios to provide readers with logical evidence to prove that freedom has a different meaning than we think. Foner uses events such as, the Cold War, the American Revolution, and World War I and II, to persuade readers that the thought of freedom changes to people based on what is going on at the time. According to Foner, each era gave people a different mindset on freedom. For example, during Progressive America in the early 1900’s, Foner says, “the key to industrial freedom lay in empowering workers to participate in economic decision-making via strong unions freed from managerial hostility and court injunctions.” (Foner 141) During the Cold War, “freedom did have a strong economic content”, he says, “freedom became fully identified with consumer capitalism.” (Foner 262)   Foner writes about how each situation in America gave “freedom” a new meaning. Slavery plays a big role in the book. Foner uses quotes from slaves in his book to persuade his readers that to the slaves “freedom” meant being able to own land, and to...

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"American Freedom". Anti Essays. 10 Dec. 2018

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American Freedom. Anti Essays. Retrieved December 10, 2018, from the World Wide Web: http://trenmayamx.com/free-essays/American-Freedom-191218.html