The Importance Of Self Definition In American Society

1535 Words 7 Pages
During the late 19th century in America, working class individuals did not have much opportunity in searching for self definition. This was a time in American history where big businesses and industries were flourishing and dominated a big part of the economy including the roles of workers. Many of these working class individuals were treated very poorly by their employers by having to deal with terrible working conditions and miniscule pay. The influx of immigrants into American also occurring at the same time made these working class individuals very replaceable and therefore denouncing these individuals as being insignificant to the businesses and not having an identity. The working classes came together in various forms of groups and organizations …show more content…
One group that failed to justify the unfair working conditions of the late 19th century were the Knights of Labor. The Populist Party, or “The People’s Party”, was another group that failed to expand the opportunity for self definition in working class individuals. The last group mentioned here that failed to truly give a fair opportunity for self definition in the African American working classes was the Reconstruction Union Governments in the South. Three groups that failed in trying to truly expand opportunity for self definition for individuals in the working classes of America during the late 19th century were the Knights of Labor, the Populist Party, and Reconstruction Union Governments in the …show more content…
Achieving these types of reforms in the workplace would definitely have been a huge step for working class individuals because they would have higher standpoint in American society where they would no longer be looked at as cogs who have to work terrible hours for terrible pay in terrible working conditions. One reason why the Knights of Labor were so popular was due to their inclusive nature. This stood out for many in a time where America was dominated by white male supremacy. Another reason the Knights of Labor stood out to the American public was their goals they wanted to achieve. Ending child labor and shorter work days were both things that would have heavily appealing to the average working class American at the time which is why the Knights of Labor were able to gain so many supporters. White or black, male or female, skilled or unskilled; the Knights of Labor may have been welcoming to a large group of people, but this strategy would prove to be their downfall in the future. In a time where capitalist and the industrialist had massive power over the workplace in America, any group who wanted to try and rearrange the capitalist workplace setting to be owned by the workers would have needed a really good reputation if they wanted any hope in appealing this type of reform to

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