Essay on The United States

839 Words Mar 16th, 2016 4 Pages
An impoverished Englishman looks out the window of the ship’s leaky hold. The year is 1639, and he has fallen victim to debt. In his already precarious social position, this indebted Englishman faced demoralization, disenfranchisement, and the as-of-yet unbreached social and economic wall of the Ancien Regime. The authorities of the time had little concern for his plight. The rapid population growth of the lowest classes in monarchic Europe made them eager to dispense of as many of the masses as possible. Our poor Englishman is, among many others, shipped to the American colonies, and sold into indentured servitude or made to spend his life in a penal colony. The trauma of this displacement and subsequent assimilation into a new, constructed colonial society was passed on through these early European colonists to their American descendants. With no hereditary wealth sequestered to a minority of nobles, many Americans were soon wealthier than their European counterparts. Intermediately, African enslaved peoples were brought in small numbers. While Africans were subject to Enlightenment Era pseudo-scientific racism, the American institution of slavery had not yet reached its most brutal manifestations. Following Bacon’s Rebellion in 1676, wealthy landowners began to fear a united lower class. Laws were passed which segregated African Americans and codified not only their economic enslavement but their social inferiority. In his work The Challenge of the Revolution, Edmund S.…

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