By H.W. Brands
The years among the Civil struggle and the top of the 19th century observed the wholesale transformation of the USA from a land of small farmers and small businessmen into an business enormous. pushed by means of unfathomably prosperous and strong businessmen like J. P. Morgan, Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller, armies of staff, either female and male, have been harnessed to a brand new imaginative and prescient of big undefined. A society rooted within the soil grew to become one established in towns, and legions of immigrants have been attracted to American beaches. What’s extra, in achieving its revolution, capitalism threatened to eclipse American democracy. “What do I care in regards to the law?” bellowed Cornelius Vanderbilt. “Hain’t I obtained the power?” He did, and with it he and the opposite capitalists reshaped each point of yank lifestyles. In American Colossus, H.W. manufacturers portrays the emergence, in a remarkably few minutes, of a recognizably glossy the United States.
The capitalist revolution left now not a unmarried quarter or point of yankee existence untouched. It roared around the South, wrenching that quarter from its feudal earlier and integrating the southern financial system into the nationwide one. It burst over the West, dictating the destruction of local American economies and peoples, using the exploitation of ordinary assets, and making the frontier of payment a enterprise frontier besides. It crashed around the city panorama of the East and North, turning towns into engines of wealth and poverty, opulence and squalor. It swamped the politics of an previous period, taking pictures one significant get together and 1/2 the opposite, inspiring the construction of a 3rd social gathering and deciding on the problems over which all 3 waged a few of the bitterest battles in American background.
Brands’s spellbinding narrative superbly depicts the oil gushers of western Pennsylvania, the increase, in Chicago, of the 1st skyscraper, the exploration of the Colorado River, the farm animals drives of the West, and the early passionate sparks of union existence. by way of 1900 the the USA he portrays is wealthier than ever, but prosperity is precarious, inequality rampant, and democracy stretched skinny. American Colossus is an unforgettable portrait of the years whilst the competition among capitalism and democracy used to be at its sharpest, and capitalism triumphed.
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Extra resources for American Colossus
American Colossus by H.W. Brands