assignment about the history book Give Me Liberty!: An American History. Fifth Ed. by Eric Foner

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We are going to continue to take a journalistic approach for this week’s Online Discussion (#4). For Chapter 5, assume the role of a journalist of the time covering national (and global) events throughout the United States and elsewhere. You could focus on a major event, theme, or historical figure(s), or multiple. However, to avoid being vague, you will be graded on the amount of details and the quality of the writing. Please be sure to incorporate at least 3-5 key terms from this revolutionary chapter in your online discussion/Journal entry. Questions to keep in mind as you write from a journalistic perspective: Who are you and what paper would you write for? Male or female? Please respond to two other Online Discussion Posts. Maybe you could write to the editor. This Online Discussion may be quite different than the last, based on the content of the chapter. You may assume a different perspective. This Online Discussions allows you to get creative, while at the same time continuing to use the same approach for previous online discussions. Continue to cite throughout your reporting.

Online Discussion Question(s) to answer..?

  1. a) The power of the stamp: Cover the roots and significance of the Stamp Act crises.
  2. b) What major events sharpened the division between Great Britain and the colonists in the 1760’s 1780’s? Discuss the significance of the outcome? How profound was it, or not.

EXAMPLE BELOW

American Expedition (Newspaper Title)

Sunday November 26, 1826

Viva La Revolución

Written by British Journalist Sofia Davis

I am pleased to announce that I will finally be returning to Britain after spending six years traveling throughout the Americas. For those who are not aware of my expedition, I have been reporting my findings through a series of letters. As most know, the “Americans” have fought for their independence from Spain and Portugal since the early 1800’s. Now that the war is coming to an end, I will like to summarize the series of events that first led to Spanish America’s struggle for independence.

Colonial rule was very much stable for 300 years, where Spain controlled Mexico and parts of South America, and Portugal mainly controlled Brazil. Their power rested on a caste system that had Peninsulars and Creoles fighting at the top, while African and indigenous people remained at the bottom. It was not until the unexpected “imperial collapse” (Chasteen Pg 95), that gave Spanish America and Brazil an opportunity to gain independence and create their own constitutional republics. Spain’s colonial control began to fall when King Carlos IV went into bankruptcy in late 1700’s. At the same time, Spain American ships and ports were constantly being attacked by the English causing trade to decrease. Above all, “Britannia ruled the waves” (Chasteen Pg 98), therefore Spain could not compete with us. The start of the French revolution and the Napoleonic wars (1799-1815) did not make things any better for Spain, especially because Napoleon Bonaparte imprisoned their king. The Enlightenment changed people’s mentalities on monarchies, so people were beginning to support popular sovereignty, “meaning that the people of each nation (not yet women, however) had the right to determine who would rule them according to a written constitution”(Chasteen Pg 98). This kind of mindset was similar to the idea of nativism and liberalism of rising patriots and revolutionaries in Spanish America.

While Europe was going through its own war, Spanish America began their own battles. As I mentioned before, the Peninsulars (Spanish born) and Creoles (Spanish American born) were fighting for control. In the eyes of the African, indigenous or mixed people, they were all the same, so when they launched their fight for independence both Peninsulars and Creoles were targeted. At first it was difficult for patriots to have enough people to overthrow the Spanish, but with the rise of a key strategy known as nativism, the patriots were able to create a purpose for their battle. They created an identity that people from various backgrounds could share, “Americanos” (Chasteen Pg 107). It was the idea of liberty, equality, and popular sovereignty that led the patriots to several victories (Chasteen Pg 127). This reminds me of a similar case that happen with Great Britain, when the thirteen colonies sought out independence from us. Although it was a loss for us, we cannot help but admire their success. Will the new nations create a democracy and put an end to slavery for good? Or was their battle for independence the beginning of new problems? It is too early to make a prediction, but we can only hope for a better turn of events.

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