The American Nation: A History of the United States, Volume 2 / Edition 14

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The American Nation’s pedagogical mission is to show readers how history connects to the experiences and expectations that mark their lives. The authors pursue that mission through a variety of distinctive features, including an innovative art program and provocative chapter-opening questions and essays to engage readers.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The American Nation offers a detailed standard history of the United States, with materials beyond what can be covered in a classroom. It also has features within the book to encourage original thinking on the part of students.

-Billy Hathorn, Laredo Community College

…does an excellent job of organzing the material in a way that ties everything together for the student…this text provides the best instructional aides on the market. Without the powerpoint presentations and instructor test banks, my preparation for these subjects would be considerably more time consuming and difficult.

-Andrew Bagley, Phillips Community College

…does an excellent job at providing a compelling chronological narrative that flows smoothly. Although [our] History Instructor Selection Committee continues to examine other textbooks, we have not found one that surpasses the strengths of this textbook.

-Horacio Salinas, Jr., Laredo Community College

I once used a text that had very effective writing — but its political bias ultimately undermined its effectiveness. Also, some texts manage a very solid “feel” by omitting inconvenient parts of history. This text avoids all these pitfalls and remains the best.

-Hubert P. van Tuyll, Augusta State University

This text is very complete for an introductory course. It will keep the students’ interest in learning.

-Armando C. Alonzo, Texas A&M University

…a comprehensive people’s history that is not shy to be critical of many deeds, but is also careful to give credit to unknown individuals and groups when it is due.

-Dr, Itai Sneh, John Jay College

..the picture captions … inform students about the context and challenge them to think about the message a particular piece of art is sending. These seem well-chosen and not just throw-away illustrations.

-Brian Steele, University of Alabama at Birmingham

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205790432
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 1/18/2011
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 14
  • Pages: 560
  • Sales rank: 267,239
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark C. Carnes

Mark C. Carnes received his undergraduate degree from Harvard and his Ph.D in history from Columbia University. He has chaired both the history and American studies departments at Barnard College and Columbia University, where he serves as the Ann Whitney Olin Professor of History. Carnes and Garraty were general editors of the 26-volume American National Biography, for which they were awarded the Waldo Leland Prize of the American Historical Association. Carnes has published numerous books on American social and cultural history, including Secret Ritual and Manhood in Victorian America (1989), Past Imperfect: History According to the Movies (1995), Novel History: Historians and Novelists Confront America’s Past (2001) and Invisible Giants: 50 Americans That Shaped the Nation but Missed the History Books (2002). Carnes also pioneered the Reacting to the Past pedagogy, which won the Theodore Hesburgh Award as the top outstanding pedagogical innovation in the nation (2004). In Reacting to the Past, college students play elaborate games, set in the past, their roles informed by classic texts. (For more on Reacting, see: In 2005 the American Historical Association named Carnes the recipient of the William Gilbert Prize for the best article on teaching history.

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Table of Contents





Chapter 15: Reconstruction and the South

Chapter 16: The Conquest of the West

Chapter 17: An Industrial Giant Emerges

Chapter 18: American Society in the Industrial Age

Chapter 19: Intellectual and Cultural Trends in the Late Nineteenth Century

Chapter 20: From Smoke-Filled Rooms to Prairie Wildfire: 1877-1896

Chapter 21: The Age of Reform

Chapter 22: From Isolation to Empire

Chapter 23: Woodrow Wilson and the Great War

Chapter 24: Postwar Society and Culture: Change and Adjustment

Chapter 25: From "Normalcy" to Economic Collapse: 1921-1933

Chapter 26: The New Deal: 1933-1941

Chapter 27: War and Peace: 1941-1945

Chapter 28: Collision Courses, Abroad and at Home: 1946-1960

Chapter 29: From Camelot to Watergate: 1961-1975

Chapter 30: Running on Empty: 1975-1991

Chapter 31: From Boomers to Millennials

Chapter 32: Shocks and Responses, 1992-Present




About the Authors

Chapter 15: Reconstruction and the South

The Assasination of Lincoln

Presidential Reconstruction

Republican Radicals

Congress Rejects Johnsonian Reconstruction

The Fourteenth Amendment

The Reconstruction Acts

Congress Supreme

The Fifteenth Amendment

"Black Republican" Reconstruction: Scalawags and Carpetbaggers

The Ravaged Land

Sharecropping and the Crop-Lien System

-The White Backlash

Grant as President

The Disputed Election of 1876

The Compromise of 1877

DEBATING THE PAST Were Reconstruction Governments Corrupt?

MAPPING THE PAST The Politics of Reconstruction


Chapter 16: The Conquest of the West

The West after the Civil War

The Plains Indians

Indian Wars

The Destruction of Tribal Life

The Lure of Gold and Silver in the West

Farmers Struggle to Keep Up

Big Business and the Land Bonanza

Western Railroad Building

The Cattle Kingdom

Open-Range Ranching

Barbed-Wire Warfare

DEBATING THE PAST Did the Frontier Promote Individualism and Democracy?


Chapter 17: An Industrial Giant Emerges

Essentials of Industrial Growth

Railroads: The First Big Business

Iron, Oil, and Electricity

Competition and Monopoly: The Railroads

Competition and Monopoly: Steel

Competition and Monopoly: Oil

Competition and Monopoly: Retailing and Utilities

American Ambivalence to Big Business

Reformers: George, Bellamy, Lloyd

Reformers: The Marxists

The Government Reacts to BIg Business: Railroad Regulation

The Government Reacts to Big Business: The Sherman Antitrust Act

The Labor Union Movement

The American Federation of Labor

Labor Millitancy Rebuffed

Whither America, Whither Democracy?

MAPPING THE PAST Were the Railroads Indispensable?

Chapter 18: American Society in the Industrial Age

Middle-Class Life

Skilled and Unskilled Workers

Working Women

Working-Class Family Life

Working-Class Attitudes

Working Your Way Up

The "New" Immigration

New Immigrants Face New Nativism

The Expanding City and Its Problems

Teeming Tenements

The Cities Modernize

Leisure Activities: More Fun and Games

Christianity's Conscience and the Social Gospel

The Settlement Houses

Civilization and Its Discontents

DEBATING THE PAST Did Immigrants Assimilate?

MAPPING THE PAST CHOLERA A New Disease Strikes the Nation

Chapter 19: Intellectual and Cultural Trends in the Late Nineteenth Century

Colleges and Universities

Revolution in the Social Sciences

Progressive Education

Law and History

Realism in Literature

Mark Twain

William Dean Howells

Henry James

Realism in Art

The Pragmatic Approach

The Knowledge Revolution

AMERICAN LIVES Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Chapter 20: From Smoke-Filled Rooms to Prairie Wildfire: 1877-1896

Congress Ascendant

Recurrent Issues

Party Politics: Sidestepping the Issues

Lackluster Presidents: From Hayes to Harrison

African Americans in the South After Reconstruction

Booker T. Washington: A "Reasonable" Champion for African Americans

City Bosses

Crops and Complaints

The Populist Movement

Showdown on Silver

The Depression of 1893

The Election of 1896

The Meaning of the Election

DEBATING THE PAST Populism--Crusade of Cranks or Potent Grass-Roots Protest?

MAPPING THE PAST Agrarian Discontent and the Populist Challenge

Chapter 21: The Age of Reform

Roots of Progressivism

The Muckrackers

The Progressive Mind

"Radical" Progressives: The Wave of the Future

Political Reform: Cities First

Political Reform: The States

State Social Legislation

Political Reform: The Woman Suffrage Movement

Theodore Roosevelt: Cowboy in the White House

Roosevelt and Big Business

Roosevelt and the Coal Strike

TR's Triumphs

Roosevelt Tilts Left

William Howard Taft: The Listless Progressive, or more is Less

Breakup of the Republican Party

The Election of 1912

Wilson: The New Freedom

The Progressives and Minority Rights

Black Militancy


DEBATING THE PAST Were the Progressives Forward-Looking?

Chapter 22: From Isolation to Empire

Isolation or Imperialism?

Origins of the Large Policy: Coveting Colonies

Toward an Empire in the Pacific

Toward and Empire in Latin America

The Cuban Revolution

The "Splendid Little" Spanish-American War

Developing a Colonial Policy

The Anti-Imperialists

The Philippine Insurrection

Cuba and the United States

The United States in the Caribbean and Central America

The Open Door Policy in China

The Panama Canal

Imperialism without Colonies

AMERICAN LIVES Frederick Funston

Chapter 23: Woodrow Wilson and the Great War

Wilson's "Moral" Diplomacy

Europe Explodes in War

Freedom of the Seas

The Election of 1916

The Road to War

Mobilizing the Economy

Workers in Wartime

Paying for the War

Propaganda and Civil Liberties

Wartime Reforms

Women and Blacks in Wartime

Americans: To the Trenches and Over the Top

Preparing for Peace

The Paris Peace Conference and the Versailles Treaty

The Senate Rejects the League of Nations

The Red Scare

The Election of 1920


Chapter 24: Postwar Society and Culture: Change and Adjustment

Closing the Gates to New Immigrants

New Urban Social Patterns

The Younger Generation

The "New" Woman

Popular Culture: Movies and Radio

The Golden Age of Sports

Urban-Rural Conflicts: Fundamentalism

Urban-Rural Conflicts: Prohibition

The Ku Klux Klan

Literary Trends

The "New Negro"

Economic Expansion

The Age of the Consumer

Henry Ford

The Airplane


DEBATING THE PAST The 1920s: A Decade of Self-Absorption?

Chapter 25: From "Normalcy" to Economic Collapse: 1921-1933

Harding and "Normalcy"

"The Business of the United States is Business"

The Harding Scandals

Coolidge Prosperity

Peace without a Sword

The Peace Movement

The Good Neighbor Policy

The Totalitarian Challenge

War Debts and Reparations

The Election of 1928

Economic Problems

The Stock Market Crash of 1929

Hoover and the Depression

The Economy Hits Bottom

The Depression and Its Victims

The Election of 1932


Chapter 26: The New Deal: 1933-1941

The Hundred Days

The National Recovery Administration (NRA)

The Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA)

The Dust Bowl

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)

The New Deal Spirit

The Unemployed

Literature During the Depression

Three Extremists: Long, Coughlin, and Townsend

The Second New Deal

The Election of 1936

Roosevelt Tries to Undermine the Supreme Court

The New Deal Winds Down

Significance of the New Deal

Women as New Dealers: The Network

Blacks During the New Deal

A New Deal for Indians

The Role of Roosevelt

The Triumph of Isolationism

War Again in Asia and Europe

A Third Term for FDR

The Undeclared War

DEBATING THE PAST Did the New Deal Succeed?


Chapter 27: War and Peace: 1941-1945

The Road to Pearl Harbor

Mobilizing the Home Front

The War Economy

War and Social Change

Minorities in Time of War: Blacks, Hispanics, and Indians

The Treatment of German and Italian Americans

Interment of Japanese Americans

Women's Contribution to the War Effort

Allied Strategy: Europe First

Germany Overwhelmed

The Naval War in the Pacific

Island Hopping

Building the Atom Bomb

Wartime Diplomacy

Allied Suspicion of Stalin

Yalta and Potsdam

RE-VIEWING THE PAST Saving Private Ryan

DEBATING THE PAST Should A-Bombs Have Been Dropped on Japan?

Chapter 28: Collision Courses, Abroad and at Home: 1946-1960

The Postwar Economy

Truman Becomes President

The Containment Policy

The Atom Bomb: A "winning" Weapon?

A Turning Point in Greece

The Marshall Plan and the Lesson of History

The Election of 1948

Containing Communism Abroad

Hot War in Korea

The Communist Issue at Home


Dwight D. Eisenhower

The Eisenhower-Dulles Foreign Policy

McCarthy Self-Destructs

Asian Policy after Korea

Israel and the Middle East

Eisenhower and Khrushchev

Latin America Aroused

Fighting the Cold War at Home

Blacks Challenge Segregation

Direct Action Protests: The Montgomery Bus Boycott

The Election of 1960

AMERICAN LIVES Martin Luther King, Jr.

Chapter 29: From Camelot to Watergate: 1961-1975

Kennedy in Camelot

The Cuban Crises

JFK's Vietnam War

"We Shall Overcome": The Civil Rights Movement

Tragedy in Dallas: JFK Assassinated

Lyndon Baines Johnson: The Great Society

New Racial Turmoil

From the "Beat Movement" to Student Radicalism

Johson Escalates the War

The Election of 1968

Nixon as President: "Vietnamizing" the War

The Cambodian "Incursion"

Nixon in Triumph

Domestic Policy under Nixon

The Watergate Break-in and Cover-up

The Judgement on Watergate: "Expletive Deleted"

Nixon Resigns, Ford Becomes President

MAPPING THE PAST School Segregation after the Brown Decison

Chapter 30: Running on Empty: 1975-1991

The Oil Crisis

Ford as President

The Fall of South Vietnam

Ford versus Carter

The Carter Presidency

A National Malaise

Stagflation: The Weird Economy

"Constant Decency" in Action

The Iran Crisis: Origins

The Iran Crisis: Carter's Dilemma

The Election of 1980

Reagan as President

Four More Years

"The Reagan Revolution"

The New Merger Movement

"A Job for Life": Layoffs Hit Home

Corporate Restructuring

Rogue Foreign Policy

Assessing the Reagan Revolution

The Election of 1988

George H.W. Bush as President

The Collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe

The War in the Persian Gulf



Chapter 31: From Boomers to Millennials

The New Immigration

The Emergence of Modern Feminism

Roe v. Wade

Conservative Counter-Attack

The Rise of Gay and Lesbian Rights


Publicly Gay

Crime and Punisment

"Crack" and Urban Gangs

Violence and Popular Culture

From Main Street to Mall to Dot.Com

From Community to Facebook

Greying of the Boomers


Chapter 32: Shocks and Responses, 1992-Present

A New Face: William Clinton

The Election of 1992

A New Start: Clinton as President

Emergence of the Republican Majority

The Election of 1996

Clinton Impeached

Clinton's Legacy

The Economic Boom and the Internet

The 2000 Election: George W. Bush Wins by One Vote

The New Terrorism

September 11, 2001

America Fights Back: War in Afghanistan

The Second Iraq War

2004-Bush Wins a Second Term

Crime: Good News and Bad

Hurricane Katrina

Iraq Insurgency and Bush's "Surge"

2008: McCain v. Obama

Financial Meltdown

"Yes We Can": Obama Elected President

Obama as President

Health Care Reform

Immigration Reform

Environmental Concerns and Disaster in the Gulf

Afghanistan, Again

The Persistent Past and Imponderable Future


DEBATING THE PAST Do Historians Ever Get It Right?





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