Analysis Of The Gospel Of Wealth, By Andrew Carnegie

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In the article, The Gospel of Wealth, written by Andrew Carnegie, he discusses the importance of the new self-made millionaires to practice the philanthropy of improvement. The philanthropy of improvement is a catalyst for progress. Carnegie purposely rejected the traditional form of philanthropy, relief. He hoped the philanthropy of improvement would nurture human connectivity. The philanthropy of improvement was revolutionary for the twentieth century, it was a time of severe discrimination against minorities like African Americans. On the surface, it may seem that philanthropy of improvement proposed by Carnegie barely benefits the community as a whole. The truth of the matter is by simply building public libraries, Carnegie indirectly engaged …show more content…
Carnegie believed that the poverty-stricken who aspire to be wealthier can do so with help from the affluent in the form of public libraries. He saw libraries as the pinnacle of self-help for the penniless and “essential for the progress of the race” (201). Carnegie was right as seen in the life of Malcolm X. Malcolm X was a minority born into low social and economic status yet he rose to greatness in part to his use of libraries and his desire to improve his life. Carnegie promoted the idea that it was the successful individual's responsibility to use it to promote the advancement of society. Malcolm X and Carnegie believed that “without education, you’re not going anywhere in this world” (The Estate of Malcolm X). Libraries are a gateway to a greater understanding of the world around you. Through the gradual integration of public institutions, learning would occur. Carnegie’s philanthropy of improvement attacked the underlying circumstance of inequality, he perceived as an immigrant. Carnegie provided the tools he used to the public in the hopes that they would motivate them to better themselves. While Malcolm X was in jail, he began reading books in an effort to educate himself. He was successful in bettering his life with the use of self-motivation and a library. Malcolm X’s knowledge helped him develop an “understanding of …show more content…
He aimed to solve social problems and the structural inequalities that keep people from higher education which is the definition of social reform. Carnegie provided libraries that had books. The books allowed people to gain knowledge that they did not have access to before. The knowledge would enable people to better themselves. Therefore, improving their social and economic status. Through, Malcolm X’s life he spread the message of freedom. A message he could not spread without his “alma mater books [and] a good library” (The Estate of Malcolm X). The knowledge obtained from books not only benefited Malcolm X but the larger African American community. I conclude that Carnegie may have pioneered the philosophy of improvement, but in many ways, he called for social

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