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From Southern Progressivism to the Uncertainties of the Roaring twenties

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Session 8 : From Southern Progressivism to the Uncertainties of the Roaring twenties

Progressivism : It mean a political ideology of the first two decades of the 20th century, this ideology emerged in the US in reaction to the three major trends : industrialization, urbanization, immigration Industrialization : 2nd revolution, electricity, steel, car with completely transform work in the world with the rise of industry. Urbanization, cities becoming enormous, Chicago 1870 > 2 millions population 1910, sky crappers. Immigration : early twenty century, heyday of the immgration in the US especially from the southern and eastern Europe. These three trends transform America society and created a lot of issues : where to live (many people especially immigrants, live in pretty terrible condition, documented by the Danish photographer Jacob Riis. Live poorly ? or risk you life in factory? (triangle fire, hundreds of workers were killed in fire) work security at work was bad, who will work ? = children, Lewis Hine took photos of children. Do rich people have to much power ?  Who should be  a citizen, women ? black ?

All theses questions, people from the progressive movement claim to have solution, were pretty optimistic, progress in their name, would solve theses soluition : faith in progress. They belived in science, In reason, they wanted expert to solve issues, and rather surprise, that the states could change society by the law

In the south, you have an  important progressive movement, the southern way, far left James K Vardaman, typical southern politician from the state of mississipi, In the 1890 he was a populist, and turn his coats and became a democrat, he made clear that he hated African American, however his express his opposition to lynching, in favor of an activist government, social  welfare, regulating the economy, Edgar Gardern Murphy, he was a pastor, in favor of the social gospel, if you are a true Christian, you need to get involve to transform society, Murphy cause was child labor and education, active in his own state of alabama, against lynching but in favor of segreagation

Walter Hines Page, was an exil of the south, to become a journalist in NYc and wrote a lot of very critical of racism etc, and would become an ambassdar. KateBarnard from the state of Oklahoma she was a catholic (in a mostly protestant state) and was very involve in public life to help the poor (commissioner of vharity) in the beginning of the 20th centry she work to wrote the new constitution of Oklaomazh  

How far did the progressive transform southern society

What was the impact of WW1 on the region ?

  1. Southern progressivism : changes… with clear limitations

On of the most important axis in the south is education, the education crusade throughout the region : a lot of industrialization in the south was using cheap labor force, like children, it apperead unbearable for many people in the south like Murphu, he created the Alabam labor charity, and began to denounce the use of child working, and they began to petition, the photography of Hide played an important role, especially in 1920 every southern state had a law banning child labor but the truth is that its survive a little more years because family needed that extra money, in term of education at large, by 1900th many southerners recognize that they had not an enough good school system, the forgetten man = basic man could not do anything amazing

In the frist decade of the 19th the school improve, with school always in segregated schools, philantrtopy like Rockfeller give money to found school, they wanted to create compulsory education

Founding university, the one of northcarolina and also Duke uni

  1. Regulation, Public health, prohibition and woman’s suffrage

Progressiv in the south wanted to regulate the industrial society, they demanded that the railroad would be better control, that large coporation would be controlled and pay taxes, and the legacy of progressivism in the south was about food, work, public agencies, and more taxes. Big topic has to do with public health by report, public exposure, many people discovered the plight of a lot of rural zones, children confronted to diceased, surtout le hookworm. Worm that proliferate in the grass. For many southern states during the progressive era, the question of hygiene was a priority

They had a lot of riddles at the time but the truth is that the waste of bad hygiene is still a problem today in the south

Very important for all the US but important of the South, is the question of alcohol, prohibiton is active since 40 years, a lot of people, especially women see alcohol as the roots of a lot of problems, poverty, domestic violence. Many women were involved in an association called the WCTU Women’s Christian’s Temperance Union (T against alcohol) and the Anti Saloon league

In 1908 two state adopted prohibiton Georgia and Mississipi, in other states as tenesse or Kentucky they were more question, bcs they were producer of bourbon, and so would led to unemployment. Racial angled to this debate, prohibition necesseray to stop African American violence, became prohibition 1910?


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