Race and Manifest Destiny : The Origins of American Racial Anglo-Saxonism

Race and Manifest Destiny : The Origins of American Racial Anglo-Saxonism


American myths about national character tend to overshadow the historical realities. Reginald Horsman's book is the first study to examine the origins of racialism in America and to show that the belief in white American superiority was firmly ensconced in the nation's ideology by 1850.

The author deftly chronicles the beginnings and growth of an ideology stressing race, basic stock, and attributes in the blood. He traces how this ideology shifted from the more benign views of the Founding Fathers, which embraced ideas of progress and the spread of republican institutions for all. He finds linkages between the new, racialist ideology in America and the rising European ideas of Anglo-Saxon, Teutonic, and scientific ideologies of the early nineteenth century. Most importantly, however, Horsman demonstrates that it was the merging of the Anglo-Saxon rhetoric with the experience of Americans conquering a continent that created a racialist philosophy. Two generations before the "new" immigrants began arriving in the late nineteenth century, Americans, in contact with blacks, Indians, and Mexicans, became vociferous racialists.

In sum, even before the Civil War, Americans had decided that peoples of large parts of this continent were incapable of creating or sharing in efficient, prosperous, democratic governments, and that American Anglo-Saxons could achieve unprecedented prosperity and power by the outward thrust of their racialism and commercial penetration of other lands. The comparatively benevolent view of the Founders of the Republic had turned into the quite malevolent ideology that other peoples could not be "regenerated" through the spread of free institutions.

Similar Books

ISBN 10: 0806146532
ISBN 13: 9780806146539

30 Aug 2017
Elliott West

ISBN 10: 0674237692
ISBN 13: 9780674237698

28 Jun 2019
Kathleen Belew

ISBN 10: 1844671453
ISBN 13: 9781844671458

17 Jul 2007
David R. Roediger

ISBN 10: 1469626632
ISBN 13: 9781469626635

27 Jun 2016
Robert G. Parkinson

ISBN 10: 163149905X
ISBN 13: 9781631499050

15 Jun 2021
Kristin Kobes Du Mez

ISBN 10: 1541673476
ISBN 13: 9781541673472

27 Dec 2018
David Roediger

ISBN 10: 1984880098
ISBN 13: 9781984880093

08 Jun 2021
Bryan Burrough

ISBN 10: 0465097413
ISBN 13: 9780465097418

03 May 2016
Kevin Kruse

ISBN 10: 0195085574
ISBN 13: 9780195085570

13 Oct 1994
David E. Stannard

ISBN 10: 1541672615
ISBN 13: 9781541672611

15 Jun 2021
Erika Lee

ISBN 10: 0252083822
ISBN 13: 9780252083822

30 Dec 2018
Erika K. Jackson

ISBN 10: 0062859692
ISBN 13: 9780062859693

16 Oct 2018
John F Kennedy