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Freedom as The Root of What It Means to Be an American

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Words: 793 |

Pages: 2|

4 min read

Published: Oct 2, 2020

Words: 793|Pages: 2|4 min read

Published: Oct 2, 2020

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Legacy of Slavery: A Struggle for Freedom in America
  3. The Civil War: A Nation's Struggle for Freedom
  4. Innovation and Growth: The American Spirit
  5. Conclusion
  6. Works Cited

Gettysburg Address captured the essence of the conflict, declaring that the nation was dedicated to the proposition that \"all men are created equal.\"\n\nLincoln's words underscored the belief that freedom is an inherent right of every American, regardless of their background or circumstances. The Civil War was a testament to the American commitment to freedom, as the nation grappled with its own divisions and confronted the moral imperative of ending slavery. The war's outcome signaled a \"new birth of freedom,\" as the United States moved toward a more just and inclusive society.\n\nInnovation and Growth: The American Spirit\n\nIn addition to its enduring commitment to freedom, America is characterized by its spirit of innovation and growth. The late 1800s and early 1900s marked a period of rapid industrialization and economic expansion, known as the Industrial Revolution. During this era, the United States witnessed the rise of large-scale businesses, the development of agriculture, and the emergence of national labor unions.\n\nThis period of transformation exemplified the American drive to grow and improve as a society. Americans are not content to remain stagnant; they continually seek ways to innovate, adapt, and thrive. The willingness to embrace change and pursue progress is a defining trait of the American identity.\n\nConclusion\n\nIn conclusion, the root of what it means to be an American is undeniably freedom. Throughout its history, America has grappled with the complexities of freedom, from the legacy of slavery to the ideals enshrined in the Gettysburg Address. Freedom is the driving force behind the American spirit of innovation and growth, as the nation continually seeks to expand opportunities and improve the lives of its citizens.\n\nThe story of Huckleberry Finn and the sacrifices made during the Civil War serve as powerful reminders of the enduring American commitment to freedom. These historical and literary examples illustrate that being an American means valuing and fighting for the principles of liberty, equality, and opportunity. As the nation continues to evolve, freedom remains at the core of what it means to be an American—a beacon of hope and aspiration for all who seek to call this great nation home."}" data-sheets-userformat='{"2":6787,"3":{"1":0},"4":{"1":2,"2":13228792},"10":2,"12":0,"14":{"1":2,"2":0},"15":"Arial, sans-serif"}'>Introduction

Being an American is defined by a myriad of values and ideals, but none is more fundamental and emblematic than the concept of freedom. Freedom has been the cornerstone of the American identity since its inception, shaping the nation's history, culture, and collective consciousness. This essay explores the idea that freedom is the root of what it means to be an American, examining historical events, literary examples, and the American spirit of innovation as testaments to the enduring significance of this principle.

'Why Violent Video Games Shouldn't Be Banned'?

The Legacy of Slavery: A Struggle for Freedom in America

Freedom has been deeply embedded in the American psyche, yet it was not always equally accessible to all its residents. The specter of slavery looms large in American history, a stark reminder that the promise of freedom was denied to millions based on their race. In the 1800s, slavery was a brutal institution that robbed individuals of their basic human rights, including the freedom to make choices about their lives.

Mark Twain's novel, "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," stands as a testament to the enduring American belief in freedom. The story centers on Huck Finn, a young boy who helps a runaway slave named Jim escape to freedom despite the societal norms of his time. Huck's internal struggle mirrors the broader American dilemma of reconciling the ideals of freedom with the reality of slavery. He comes to recognize that freedom is not reserved for one race or group; it is a universal right that every person in America deserves.

Jim's journey to freedom symbolizes the enduring fight for liberty in America. As Huck and Jim navigate the Mississippi River, they are both on a quest for freedom—one from societal expectations, the other from physical bondage. Jim's jubilation upon reaching the free state of Cairo underscores the profound importance of freedom to those who have been denied it. His cry of "We's safe, Huck, we's safe!" resonates with the shared American aspiration for liberty.

The Civil War: A Nation's Struggle for Freedom

The American Civil War, which erupted on April 12th, 1861, was a defining moment in the nation's history. It was a war fought not only for the preservation of the Union but also for the emancipation of slaves and the restoration of freedom to all Americans. President Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address captured the essence of the conflict, declaring that the nation was dedicated to the proposition that "all men are created equal."

Lincoln's words underscored the belief that freedom is an inherent right of every American, regardless of their background or circumstances. The Civil War was a testament to the American commitment to freedom, as the nation grappled with its own divisions and confronted the moral imperative of ending slavery. The war's outcome signaled a "new birth of freedom," as the United States moved toward a more just and inclusive society.

Innovation and Growth: The American Spirit

In addition to its enduring commitment to freedom, America is characterized by its spirit of innovation and growth. The late 1800s and early 1900s marked a period of rapid industrialization and economic expansion, known as the Industrial Revolution. During this era, the United States witnessed the rise of large-scale businesses, the development of agriculture, and the emergence of national labor unions.

This period of transformation exemplified the American drive to grow and improve as a society. Americans are not content to remain stagnant; they continually seek ways to innovate, adapt, and thrive. The willingness to embrace change and pursue progress is a defining trait of the American identity.

Struggle for Freedom\n\nFreedom has been deeply embedded in the American psyche, yet it was not always equally accessible to all its residents. The specter of slavery looms large in American history, a stark reminder that the promise of freedom was denied to millions based on their race. In the 1800s, slavery was a brutal institution that robbed individuals of their basic human rights, including the freedom to make choices about their lives.\n\nMark Twain's novel, \"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,\" stands as a testament to the enduring American belief in freedom. The story centers on Huck Finn, a young boy who helps a runaway slave named Jim escape to freedom despite the societal norms of his time. Huck's internal struggle mirrors the broader American dilemma of reconciling the ideals of freedom with the reality of slavery. He comes to recognize that freedom is not reserved for one race or group; it is a universal right that every person in America deserves.\n\nJim's journey to freedom symbolizes the enduring fight for liberty in America. As Huck and Jim navigate the Mississippi River, they are both on a quest for freedom—one from societal expectations, the other from physical bondage. Jim's jubilation upon reaching the free state of Cairo underscores the profound importance of freedom to those who have been denied it. His cry of \"We's safe, Huck, we's safe!\" resonates with the shared American aspiration for liberty.\n\nThe Civil War: A Nation's Struggle for Freedom\n\nThe American Civil War, which erupted on April 12th, 1861, was a defining moment in the nation's history. It was a war fought not only for the preservation of the Union but also for the emancipation of slaves and the restoration of freedom to all Americans. President Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address captured the essence of the conflict, declaring that the nation was dedicated to the proposition that \"all men are created equal.\"\n\nLincoln's words underscored the belief that freedom is an inherent right of every American, regardless of their background or circumstances. The Civil War was a testament to the American commitment to freedom, as the nation grappled with its own divisions and confronted the moral imperative of ending slavery. The war's outcome signaled a \"new birth of freedom,\" as the United States moved toward a more just and inclusive society.\n\nInnovation and Growth: The American Spirit\n\nIn addition to its enduring commitment to freedom, America is characterized by its spirit of innovation and growth. The late 1800s and early 1900s marked a period of rapid industrialization and economic expansion, known as the Industrial Revolution. During this era, the United States witnessed the rise of large-scale businesses, the development of agriculture, and the emergence of national labor unions.\n\nThis period of transformation exemplified the American drive to grow and improve as a society. Americans are not content to remain stagnant; they continually seek ways to innovate, adapt, and thrive. The willingness to embrace change and pursue progress is a defining trait of the American identity.\n\nConclusion\n\nIn conclusion, the root of what it means to be an American is undeniably freedom. Throughout its history, America has grappled with the complexities of freedom, from the legacy of slavery to the ideals enshrined in the Gettysburg Address. Freedom is the driving force behind the American spirit of innovation and growth, as the nation continually seeks to expand opportunities and improve the lives of its citizens.\n\nThe story of Huckleberry Finn and the sacrifices made during the Civil War serve as powerful reminders of the enduring American commitment to freedom. These historical and literary examples illustrate that being an American means valuing and fighting for the principles of liberty, equality, and opportunity. As the nation continues to evolve, freedom remains at the core of what it means to be an American—a beacon of hope and aspiration for all who seek to call this great nation home."}" data-sheets-userformat='{"2":6787,"3":{"1":0},"4":{"1":2,"2":13228792},"10":2,"12":0,"14":{"1":2,"2":0},"15":"Arial, sans-serif"}'>Conclusion

In conclusion, the root of what it means to be an American is undeniably freedom. Throughout its history, America has grappled with the complexities of freedom, from the legacy of slavery to the ideals enshrined in the Gettysburg Address. Freedom is the driving force behind the American spirit of innovation and growth, as the nation continually seeks to expand opportunities and improve the lives of its citizens.

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The story of Huckleberry Finn and the sacrifices made during the Civil War serve as powerful reminders of the enduring American commitment to freedom. These historical and literary examples illustrate that being an American means valuing and fighting for the principles of liberty, equality, and opportunity. As the nation continues to evolve, freedom remains at the core of what it means to be an American—a beacon of hope and aspiration for all who seek to call this great nation home.

Works Cited

  1. Foner, E. (2018). The Second Founding: How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution. W. W. Norton & Company.
  2. Gettysburg Address. (1863). In National Archives. https://www.archives.gov/founding-docs/gettysburg-address
  3. Twain, M. (1885). The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Charles L. Webster & Co.
  4. Wood, G. S. (1992). The Radicalism of the American Revolution. Vintage.
  5. Zinn, H. (1980). A People's History of the United States. Harper & Row.
  6. Industrial Revolution. (n.d.). In History.com. https://www.history.com/topics/industrial-revolution/industrial-revolution
  7. Lincoln, A. (1863). Gettysburg Address. https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/gettysburg-address/gettysburg-text.html
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Freedom as The Root of What It Means to Be an American. (2020, October 10). GradesFixer. Retrieved April 13, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/freedom-is-the-root-of-what-it-means-to-be-an-american/
“Freedom as The Root of What It Means to Be an American.” GradesFixer, 10 Oct. 2020, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/freedom-is-the-root-of-what-it-means-to-be-an-american/
Freedom as The Root of What It Means to Be an American. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/freedom-is-the-root-of-what-it-means-to-be-an-american/> [Accessed 13 Apr. 2024].
Freedom as The Root of What It Means to Be an American [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2020 Oct 10 [cited 2024 Apr 13]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/freedom-is-the-root-of-what-it-means-to-be-an-american/
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