The frontier thesis and american foreign policy

Frederick Jackson Turner "The existence of an area of free land, its continuous recession, and the advance of American settlement westward explain American development.

The frontier thesis and american foreign policy

Frederick Jackson Turner "The existence of an area of free land, its continuous recession, and the advance of American settlement westward explain American development. Turner was born in Portage, Wisconsin, in After his graduation from the University of Wisconsin inTurner decided to become a professional historian, and received his Ph.

He retired in but continued his research until his death in Census Bureau had announced the disappearance of a contiguous frontier line. Turner took this "closing of the frontier" as an opportunity to reflect upon the influence it had exercised.

He argued that the frontier had meant that every American generation returned "to primitive conditions on a continually advancing frontier line. Individuals, forced to rely on their own wits and strength, he believed, were simply too scornful of rank to be amenable to the exercise of centralized political power.

Turner offered his frontier thesis as both an analysis of the past and a warning about the future. If the frontier had been so essential to the development of American culture and democracy, then what would befall them as the frontier closed?

It was on this forboding note that he closed his address: His critics have denied everything from his basic assumptions to the small details of his argument. Some have long disputed the very idea of a frontier of "free land.

Civil War History

On a more analytic level, an increasing number of Western historians have found the very concept of a frontier dubious, because it applies to too many disparate places and times to be useful. How much do Puritan New England and the California of the transcontinental railroad really have in common?

Many such critics have sought to replace the idea of a moving frontier with the idea of the West as a distinctive region, much like the American South. Cooperation and communities of various sorts, not isolated individuals, made possible the absorption of the West into the United States.

The frontier thesis and american foreign policy

Most migrant wagon trains, for example, were composed of extended kinship networks. Moreover, as the 19th century wore on, the role of the federal government and large corporations grew increasingly important. Corporate investors headquartered in New York laid the railroads; government troops defeated Indian nations who refused to get out of the way of manifest destiny; even the cowboys, enshrined in popular mythology as rugged loners, were generally low-level employees of sometimes foreign-owned cattle corporations.

Moreover, these revisionist scholars argue, for many places the West has not been the land of freedom and opportunity that both Turnerian history and popular mythology would have us believe. For many women, Asians, Mexicans who suddenly found themselves residents of the United States, and, of course, Indians, the West was no promised land.

Often the rhetoric reaches an acrimonious crescendo. But in a sense, the very acrimony of these debates takes us full circle back to Turner and his legacy, for debates about the significance of Western history are hardly ever confined to the past.

In our understanding of what we are as a nation, if on no other level, the Western past continues to define us today."The Frontier Thesis and American Foreign Policy" () Written by William Appleman Williams, a student of Turner's.

The frontier thesis and american foreign policy

Appleman used this novel to yolk together the parallels in the frontier. Further limiting American potential for foreign impact was the fact that a strong international presence required a strong military—specifically a navy—which the United States, after the Civil War, was in no position to maintain.

History of United States expansionism

Letter Opposing Georgia's Policy Denying Higher Ed Access to Undocumented Students; The Significance of the Frontier in American History () this is a short version of the essay subsequently published in Turner's essay collection, The Frontier in American History ().

The Land Ordinance of was adopted by the Continental Congress in the United States on May 20, Under the Articles of Confederation, Congress did not have the power to raise revenue by direct taxation of the inhabitants of the United States.

"The Frontier Thesis and American Foreign Policy American policy for the first half of the 20th c.=extending US frontier outside the US.-nature of extension of the frontier abroad was for economic commercialization without burdens of actually establishing colonies. With these words, Frederick Jackson Turner laid the foundation for modern historical study of the American West and presented a "frontier thesis" that continues to influence historical thinking.

William Appleman Williams: The Frontier Thesis in American Foreign Policy --