Significance Of Turner Thesis

Significance Of Turner Thesis-41
The idea that the source of America's power and uniqueness was gone was a distressing concept for some intellectuals.Some talked about overseas expansion as a new frontier; others (like John F.Kennedy) called for a "new frontier" of achievement.

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It was then challenged by the "New Western Historians," who ignored its valid conclusions but instead charged that it ignored ethnic minorities and women and was too praiseworthy of the pioneers.

Turner set up an evolutionary model (he had studied evolution with a leading geologist), using the time dimension of American history, and the geographical space of the land that became the United States.

Writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson had speculated on the importance of the west, and Theodore Roosevelt wrote a full-scale history of the Tennessee frontier that argued the experience formed a new "race"—the American people.

Turner drew on his knowledge of evolution, and his own research into the fur trade frontier.

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What "Progressive" assessments of history appear in Turner's thesis? How does Turner's thesis reflect these changes, try to make sense of them, or sound a warning call for ways in which America might be losing its way as a result of the changes? What activities, identities, geographic locations, etc., reveal that American's normative status?

8) Patricia Nelson Limerick has argued that Turner's "West" is his own hometown of Portage, Wisconsin, and that this fact shapes his assessment of the "frontier process." Do you agree with this assessment of Turner's essay? In what ways is Turner's thesis a statement of American hegemony at the moment of the 1890s, both with regards to that normative American and American territorial expansion?

Franklin used the words frontier and West interchangeably and generally equated both of them with free land.

He believed that the West was decisive in producing the phenomenal population growth of the society of his day and its "middle-class agrarianism." His frontier-inspired ideas had a demonstrable effect on public events and contributed to the coming of the American Revolution.


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