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The Brief American Pageant , Sixth Edition
David M. Kennedy, Stanford University
Lizabeth Cohen, Harvard University
Thomas A. Bailey
Mel Piehl, Valparaiso University
Suggested Lecture Topics
Chapter 14
Developing The Chapter: Suggested Lecture Or Discussion Topics


  • Focus on the Irish and German immigrants and the nativist reaction to them. Show why nativists thought that immigrant poverty and Catholicism posed a threat to American democracy. Consider the important role that the Catholic Church played in the lives of Irish and German Catholic immigrants, despite the opposition of nativists.

    REFERENCES: Kerby Miller, Emigrants and Exiles: Ireland and the Irish Exodus to North America (1985); Jay P. Dolan, The Immigrant Church (1975).

  • Examine the effects of early industrial development on labor and society. Show how the change from a subsistence to a market economy affected workers, farmers and especially women.

    REFERENCES: Herbert Gutman, Work, Culture, and Society in Industrializing America (1976); Mary Blevitt, Men, Women, and Work (1988).

  • Consider the various stages of the market and transportation revolutions. Focus on the particular significance of the steamboat and the canal, and their gradual replacement by the railroad.

    REFERENCE: Charles Sellers, The Market Revolution: Jacksonian America, 1815-1846 (1992).

  • Analyze the relation between the growing national economy and the regional economic specialization of the Northeast, South, and Midwest. Point out the paradoxical way in which economic development both united and divided the sections.

    REFERENCE: W. Elliot Brownlee, Dynamics of Ascent (1974).



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