Meaning of UNITED STATES in English

officially United States of America, abbreviations U.S. or U.S.A., byname America country of North America with 48 contiguous states occupying the mid-latitudes of the continent, together with the state of Alaska at the northwest extreme of North America and the island state of Hawaii lying in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The coterminous United States is bounded to the north by Canada; to the west by the Pacific Ocean; to the south by Mexico, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Straits of Florida; and to the east by the Atlantic Ocean. Its capital is Washington, D.C. Area, including the U.S. share of the Great Lakes, 3,679,192 square miles (9,529,063 square km). Pop. (1993 est.) 258,233,000. Fishing boat at the harbour at Portsmouth, New Hampshire. officially United States of America, abbreviations U.S. or U.S.A., byname America country of North America, a federal republic of 50 states. Besides the 48 contiguous states that occupy the middle latitudes of the continent, the United States includes the state of Alaska, at the northwestern extreme of North America, and the island state of Hawaii, in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The coterminous states are bounded on the north by Canada, on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, on the south by the Gulf of Mexico and Mexico, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean. The national capital is Washington, which is coextensive with the District of Columbia, the federal capital region created in 1790. The total area of the United States is 3,679,192 square miles (9,529,063 square kilometres), making it the fourth largest country in the world in area (after Russia, Canada, and China). Outlying territories and other politically associated areas in the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea add approximately 4,000 square miles to this figure. The major characteristic of the United States is probably its great variety. Its physical environment ranges from the Arctic to the subtropical, from the moist rain forest to the arid desert, from the rugged mountain peak to the flat prairie. Although the total population of the United States is large by world standards, its overall population density is relatively low; the country embraces some of the world's largest urban concentrations as well as some of the most extensive areas that are almost devoid of habitation. The United States contains a highly diverse population; but, unlike a country such as China that largely incorporated indigenous peoples, its diversity has to a great degree come from an immense and sustained global immigration. Probably no other country has a wider range of racial, ethnic, and cultural types than does the United States. In addition to the presence of surviving native Americans (including American Indians, Aleuts, and Eskimo) and the descendants of Africans taken as slaves to America, the national character has been enriched, tested, and constantly redefined by the tens of millions of immigrants who by and large have gone to America hoping for greater social, political, and economic opportunities than they had in the places they left. The United States is the world's greatest economic power, measured in terms of gross national product (GNP). The nation's wealth is partly a reflection of its rich natural resources and its enormous agricultural output, but it owes more to the country's highly developed industry. Despite its relative economic self-sufficiency in many areas, the United States is the most important single factor in world trade by virtue of the sheer size of its economy. Its exports and imports represent major proportions of the world total. The United States also impinges on the global economy as a source of and as a destination for investment capital. The country continues to sustain an economic life that is more diversified than any other on Earth, providing the majority of its people with one of the world's highest standards of living. The United States is relatively young by world standards, being barely more than 200 years old; it achieved its current size only in the mid-20th century. America was the first of the European colonies to separate successfully from its motherland, and it was the first nation to be established on the premise that sovereignty rests with its citizens and not with the government. In its first century and a half, the country was mainly preoccupied with its own territorial expansion and economic growth and with social debates that ultimately led to civil war and a healing period that is still not complete. In the 20th century the United States emerged as a world power, and since World War II it has been one of the preeminent powers. It has not accepted this mantle easily nor always carried it willingly; the principles and ideals of its founders have been tested by the pressures and exigencies of its dominant status. Although the United States still offers its residents opportunities for unparalleled personal advancement and wealth, the depletion of its resources, contamination of its environment, and continuing social and economic inequality that perpetuates areas of poverty and blight all threaten the fabric of the country. The Editors of the Encyclopdia Britannica The District of Columbia is discussed in the article Washington. For discussion of other major U.S. cities, see the articles Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. Political units in association with the United States include Puerto Rico, discussed in the article Puerto Rico, and several Pacific islands, discussed in Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa. Additional reading Geography The land (Landforms and geology): The standard work on the landform regions of the United States is still William D. Thornbury, Regional Geomorphology of the United States (1965), superbly illustrated. Walter Sullivan, Landprints: On the Magnificent American Landscape (1984), while journalistic in tone, is a lively, authoritative, and well-illustrated treatment. An elementary, illustrated textbook is E.C. Pirkle and W.H. Yoho, Natural Landscapes of the United States, 4th ed. (1985). Nevin M. Fenneman, Physiography of Western United States (1931), and Physiography of Eastern United States (1938), are exhaustive and still standard references. William L. Graf (ed.), Geomorphic Systems of North America (1987), is a highly technical discussion. Recommended atlases include Charles O. Paullin, Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States (1932, reprinted 1975); and Geological Survey (U.S.), The National Atlas of the United States of America (1970).(Climate): Stephen S. Visher, Climatic Atlas of the United States (1954, reprinted 1966), contains more than 1,000 maps. United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Climates of the United States, 2nd ed., 2 vol. (1980), makes available physical and climatic data in narrative, tabular, and map form. John L. Baldwin, Climates of the United States (1973), is a concise treatment. Scholarly discussions are found in Reid A. Bryson and F. Kenneth Hare (eds.), Climates of North America (1974).(Plant and animal life): An authoritative regional treatment of plant and animal ecology is Victor E. Shelford, The Ecology of North America (1963, reprinted 1978). Michael G. Barbour and William Dwight Billings (eds.), North American Terrestrial Vegetation (1988), covers all major types. The relationship between climate and natural vegetation is obvious but far from simple; the most ambitious cartographic attempt to correlate them in a North American setting is explained in Robert G. Bailey (comp.), Description of the Ecoregions of the United States (1978).(Human geography): Of the several general texts covering the human geography of the continent, perhaps the most stimulating and informative is J. Wreford Watson, North America, Its Countries and Regions, rev. ed. (1967). D.W. Meinig, The Shaping of America, vol. 1, Atlantic America, 14921800 (1986), is indispensable for an understanding of the origins of America's human geography. A general discussion of the traditional regions of the country is found in Wilbur Zelinsky, The Cultural Geography of the United States (1973). Joel Garreau, The Nine Nations of North America (1981), is a lively, highly readable description of the emerging socioeconomic regions.(Landscape and land use): Stephen S. Birdsall and John W. Florin, Regional Landscapes of the United States and Canada, 3rd ed. (1985), is a general introduction. John R. Stilgoe, Common Landscape of America, 1580 to 1845 (1982), offers a valuable account of the early evolution of settlement. John Brinckerhoff Jackson, Discovering the Vernacular Landscape (1984), delves into the meaning of everyday man-made environments. The growth and development of America's cities and towns are detailed in Alexander B. Callow, Jr. (ed.), American Urban History, 3rd ed. (1982); and Richard Lingeman, Small Town America: A Narrative History, 1620the Present (1980). Peirce F. Lewis Wilbur Zelinsky The people The Statistical Abstract of the United States, published annually by the United States Bureau of the Census, is the standard summary of statistics on the country's social, political, and economic composition. Interpretations of demographic data include Edward G. Stockwell, Population and People (1968); and Richard M. Scammon and Ben J. Wattenberg, The Real Majority (1970). For an analysis of national values, a classic account is Gunnar Myrdal, An American Dilemma: The Negro Problem and Modern Democracy, 2 vol. (1944, reprinted 1975). Oscar Handlin, The Uprooted, 2nd ed. enlarged (1973), covers the era of mass immigration, 18601920. Examinations of contemporary American minority groups include Stephan Thernstorm (ed.), Harvard Encyclopedia of American Ethnic Groups (1980); and Frank D. Bean and W. Parker Frisbie (eds.), The Demography of Racial and Ethnic Groups (1978). Ethnic patterns as of 1980 are treated definitively in James Paul Allen and Eugene James Turner, We the People: An Atlas of America's Ethnic Diversity (1988). Oscar Handlin The economy John Agnew, The United States in the World (1987), analyzes the growth of regional economic blocs and their effects on the U.S. economy. Anthony S. Campagna, U.S. National Economic Policy, 19171985 (1987), is a history of changes in America's economic policies over nearly 70 years. Aspects of the economy are treated in Howard F. Gregor, Industrialization of U.S. Agriculture (1982), an atlas emphasizing aspects of U.S. industrialized farming, mainly from census information; Robert J. Newman, Growth in the American South (1984), on the shift of U.S. manufacturing to the Southern states in the 1960s and '70s; and Rutherford H. Platt and George Macinko (eds.), Beyond the Urban Fringe (1983), essays on the vast land acreage outside U.S. metropolitan areas. Administration and social conditions The United States Government Manual (annual) offers a broad overview of the federal structure; while the Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report and National Journal (weekly) provide closer views of the public record of the federal legislature. Congressional Quarterly's Guide to Congress, 3rd ed. (1982), details the development and present organization of Congress. See also The Book of the States, published biennially by the Council of State Governments. Donald R. Whitnah (ed.), Government Agencies (1983), contains essays on the agencies' purposes and histories, with bibliographies. Discussions of election politics include Fred I. Greenstein and Frank B. Feigert, The American Party System and the American People, 3rd ed. (1985); the series by Theodore H. White, begun with The Making of the President, 1960 (1961), which continued by covering subsequent presidential elections; and Jack P. Greene (ed.), Encyclopedia of American Political History, 3 vol. (1984). Alexander DeConde (ed.), Encyclopedia of American Foreign Policy, 3 vol. (1978), also contains useful bibliographies. Neal R. Peirce and Jerry Hagstrom, The Book of America: Inside 50 States Today, rev. and updated ed. (1984), provides an insightful look at persistent social differences among various regions of the country. The Editors of the Encyclopdia Britannica Cultural life The classic statement of the American vision in literary criticism is Lionel Trilling, The Liberal Imagination (1950, reissued 1976). See also Leslie Fiedler, What Was Literature? (1982), a radical egalitarian polemic against the division of American literature into high and low forms. Emory Elliott (ed.), Columbia Literary History of the United States (1988), covers the many aspects of American literature. Daniel Hoffman (ed.), Harvard Guide to Contemporary American Writing (1979), is the best general introduction. Useful works on art include Dore Ashton, American Art Since 1945 (1982); Irving Sandler, The Triumph of American Painting: A History of Abstract Expressionism (1970, reissued 1982); and Milton W. Brown et al., American Art (1979). The renaissance of American dance has produced two great dance critics, Arlene Croce and Edwin Denby. Their works include Arlene Croce, Going to the Dance (1982), and Sight Lines (1987); and Edwin Denby, Dance Writings (1986). For a history of America's unique contribution to the theatre arts, see Gerald Bordman, American Musical Theater, expanded ed. (1986). James Agee, Agee on Film, vol. 1, Reviews and Comments (1958, reprinted 1983), is still the most eloquent writing about American movies. Stephen Mamber, Cinema Verite in America: Studies in Uncontrollable Documentary (1974), is a good introduction to alternative theories about alternative film. H. Wiley Hitchcock and Stanley Sadie (eds.), The New Grove Dictionary of American Music, 4 vol. (1986), is an excellent starting point for research. Gilbert Chase, America's Music, from the Pilgrims to the Present, rev. 3rd ed. (1987), is invaluable and readable. Adam Gopnik History Among the many overviews of U.S. history, the following are representative: Samuel Eliot Morison, Henry Steele Commager, and William E. Leuchtenburg, The Growth of the American Republic, 7th ed. (1980); and John A. Garraty and Robert A. McCaughey, The American Nation, 6th ed. (1987). Reference sources include Dictionary of American History, rev. ed., 8 vol. (197678); and Richard B. Morris (ed.), Encyclopaedia of American History, 6th ed. (1982). Discovery and exploration Useful introductions include Samuel Eliot Morison, The European Discovery of America, 2 vol. (197174); and David B. Quinn, North America from Earliest Discovery to First Settlements: The Norse Voyages to 1612 (1977). The Editors of the Encyclopdia Britannica Colonial development to 1763 Charles M. Andrews, The Colonial Period of American History, 4 vol. (193438, reprinted 1964), is the starting point for an understanding of the structure of the British Empire in America. Lawrence Henry Gipson, The British Empire Before the American Revolution, 15 vol. (193670), represents the culmination of the British Imperial school of interpretation. Gary B. Nash, Red, White, and Black: The Peoples of Early America, 2nd ed. (1982); and Jack P. Greene and J.R. Pole (eds.), Colonial British America (1984), are excellent surveys.(Settlement): Perry Miller, The New England Mind: The Seventeenth Century (1939, reissued 1983), and a sequel, The New England Mind: From Colony to Province (1953, reissued 1967), together constitute perhaps the finest work of intellectual history ever written by an American historian. Francis Jennings, The Invasion of America (1975); and James Axtell, The European and the Indian (1982), are important accounts of whiteIndian relations.(Imperial organization): Useful surveys include Michael Kammen, Empire and Interest: The American Colonies and the Politics of Mercantilism (1970); and Stephen Saunders Webb, 1676, the End of American Independence (1984).(The growth of provincial power): James A. Henretta, The Evolution of American Society, 17001815 (1973), is an excellent survey of the American economic and political order. Jack P. Greene, Pursuits of Happiness (1988), seeks to demonstrate the variety of colonial social developments. Carl Bridenbaugh, Myths and Realities: Societies of the Colonial South (1952, reprinted 1981), argues persuasively that the colonial South consisted of not one but three sections. Rhys Isaac, The Transformation of Virginia, 17401790 (1982), imaginatively surveys the social order of 18th-century Virginia. Gary B. Nash, The Urban Crucible: Social Change, Political Consciousness, and the Origins of the American Revolution (1979), surveys the growth of American cities in the 18th century. John J. McCusker and Russell R. Menard, The Economy of British America, 16071789 (1985), is a good survey.(Cultural and religious development): Daniel J. Boorstin, The Americans: The Colonial Experience (1958, reissued 1988), gives a brilliant, if overstated, account of American uniqueness. Henry F. May, The Enlightenment in America (1976), provocatively examines American intellectual development. See also Brooke Hindle, The Pursuit of Science in Revolutionary America, 17351789 (1956, reprinted 1974). Alan Heimert, Religion and the American Mind, from the Great Awakening to the Revolution (1966), makes an important though polemical contribution to the understanding of the Great Awakening.(America, England, and the wider world): Overviews are found in Francis Parkman, A Half-Century of Conflict, 2 vol. (1892, reprinted 1965); Howard H. Peckham, The Colonial Wars, 16891762 (1964); and Alan Rogers, Empire and Liberty: American Resistance to British Authority, 17551763 (1974). Richard R. Beeman The American Revolution (Prelude to revolution): Bernard Bailyn, The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (1967), examines the transmission of English republican ideology and its American reception, while his The Origins of American Politics (1968) emphasizes political processes. Edward Countryman, The American Revolution (1985), considers American social history in the explanation of how American resistance developed. P.G.D. Thomas, British Politics and the Stamp Act Crisis (1975), is the most scholarly account of British objectives and methods, and his The Townshend Duties Crisis (1987) is the most comprehensive account of this episode.(War of Independence): John R. Alden, The American Revolution, 17751783 (1954, reprinted 1962), is distinguished for its political and military analyses. Jack P. Greene (ed.), The American Revolution (1987), contains a valuable collection of essays. Jerrilyn Greene Marston, King and Congress (1987), studies how Congress acquired formal legitimacy in the course of rebellion. Robert Middlekauff, The Glorious Cause (1982), examines the Revolution from a somewhat older point of view than is now fashionable. Piers Mackesy, The War for America, 17751783 (1964), explains the British side of the war. J.G.A. Pocock (ed.), Three British Revolutions: 1641, 1688, 1776 (1980), sets the American Revolution in the historical context of British experience. Morton White, The Philosophy of the American Revolution (1978), analyzes the concepts that took shape in the Declaration of Independence. Jack N. Rakove, The Beginnings of National Politics (1979), interprets the complex politics of the Continental Congress. Military histories include John Shy, Toward Lexington (1965), on the British army in America; Don Higginbotham, The War of American Independence (1971, reprinted 1985), the best of the military studies, showing the interrelationship of military and political developments; Charles Royster, A Revolutionary People at War (1979, reissued 1981); and William M. Fowler, Jr., Rebels Under Sail (1976), on the American navy. Willard M. Wallace J.R. Pole The early federal republic Peter S. Onuf, The Origins of the Federal Republic (1983), stresses the jurisdictional problems of relations among states and between states and the Confederation. Gordon S. Wood, The Creation of the American Republic, 17761787 (1969), provides a comprehensive ideological interpretation emphasizing the transformation of political thought into action. David F. Epstein, The Political Theory of The Federalist (1984); and the lengthy introduction to Cecelia M. Kenyon, The Antifederalists (1966, reprinted 1985), are excellent studies. Jackson Turner Main, The Antifederalists: Critics of the Constitution, 17811788 (1961, reprinted 1974), analyzes the social origins and aspirations of the Anti-Federalists. Joyce Appleby, Capitalism and a New Social Order (1984), persuasively argues that capitalism was seen as a liberating force by Jeffersonians as well as by Hamiltonians. Gerald Stourzh, Alexander Hamilton and the Idea of Republican Government (1970), explains Hamilton's vision of American opportunity. James M. Banner, Jr., To the Hartford Convention: The Federalists and the Origins of Party Politics in Massachusetts, 17891815 (1970), examines Federalist rumblings of secession. John Zvesper, Political Philosophy and Rhetoric (1977), analyzes the underlying differences of principle and political thought in the 1790s. Richard Hofstadter, The Idea of a Party System (1969), explains how the idea of opposition was transferred into accepted political institutions between 1780 and 1840. Noble E. Cunningham, The Jeffersonian Republicans (1957), is the most scholarly account of the formation of an organized opposition leading to Jefferson's victory in 1800, while his The Process of Government Under Jefferson (1978), and The Jeffersonian Republicans in Power (1963), study the translation of Jeffersonian politics into action. J.R. Pole From 1816 to 1850 (The Era of Mixed Feelings): A comprehensive and highly readable overview of the politics of this period is George Dangerfield, The Era of Good Feelings (1952, reprinted 1973). Shaw Livermore, Jr., The Twilight of Federalism: The Disintegration of the Federalist Party, 18151830 (1962, reissued 1972), is an excellent analysis. Glover Moore, The Missouri Controversy, 18191821 (1953, reissued 1967), skillfully untangles that complex problem.(Economic development): Peter Temin, The Jacksonian Economy (1969), is provocative but not always easy to follow. Still valuable and informative are Bray Hammond, Banks and Politics in America, from the Revolution to the Civil War (1957, reissued 1967); Edward Pessen, Most Uncommon Jacksonians: The Radical Leaders of the Early Labor Movement (1967, reprinted 1970); and Walter Buckingham Smith, Economic Aspects of the Second Bank of the United States (1953, reissued 1969).(Blacks, slave and free): Particularly noteworthy studies are Eugene D. Genovese, Roll, Jordan, Roll: The World the Slaves Made (1974); Herbert G. Gutman, The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 17501925 (1976); Leon F. Litwack, North of Slavery: The Negro in the Free States, 17901860 (1961, reprinted 1970); and Ira Berlin, Slaves Without Masters: The Free Negro in the Antebellum South (1974, reissued 1981).(Social and intellectual developments): Lightly documented but brilliantly insightful is Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 2 vol. (1835; originally published in French, 1835), available in many later editions. Edward Pessen, Riches, Class, and Power Before the Civil War (1973), challenges Tocqueville's version of equality in Jacksonian America. William H. Pease and Jane H. Pease, The Web of Progress: Private Values and Public Styles in Boston and Charleston, 18281843 (1985); and Barbara Welter, Dimity Convictions: The American Woman in the Nineteenth Century (1976), are useful studies. Rush Welter, The Mind of America, 18201860 (1975), is valuable if not always persuasive. Surveys of the era's reform movements include Martin Duberman (ed.), The Antislavery Vanguard (1965); and David Brion Davis (comp.), Ante-Bellum Reform (1967).(Jacksonian politics): Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., The Age of Jackson (1945, reissued 1953), is an influential study that stimulated a great array of refutations of its pro-Jackson interpretation, including Edward Pessen, Jacksonian America, new ed. (1978, reprinted 1985). A stimulating if not always convincing comparison of Jacksonian and earlier America is Robert H. Wiebe, The Opening of American Society: From the Adoption of the Constitution to the Eve of Disunion (1984). Richard P. McCormick, The Second American Party System (1966, reissued 1973), is an influential study. Michael Paul Rogin, Fathers and Children: Andrew Jackson and the Subjugation of the American Indian (1975), is brilliant, original, and controversial. John M. Belohlavek, Let the Eagle Soar!: The Foreign Policy of Andrew Jackson (1985), fills a void in the Jacksonian literature.(Expansionism): Bernard De Voto, The Year of Decision, 1846 (1942, reissued 1989); and K. Jack Bauer, The Mexican War, 18461848 (1974), are scholarly treatments. Edward Pessen The Civil War The best general syntheses of modern scholarship are James M. McPherson, Ordeal by Fire (1982); and J.G. Randall and David Donald, The Civil War and Reconstruction, 2nd ed. rev. (1969). Allan Nevins, Ordeal of the Union, 8 vol. (194771), provides a comprehensive history. Clement Eaton, A History of the Old South, 3rd ed. (1975, reissued 1988), is the best general history of the region. Full, critical assessments of slavery are provided by Kenneth M. Stampp, The Peculiar Institution (1956, reprinted 1978); and the study on slavery by Genovese, cited in the section covering 1816 to 1850. A most perceptive account of the political conflicts of the late 1850s is Roy F. Nichols, The Disruption of American Democracy (1948, reissued 1967); while Don E. Fehrenbacher, The Dred Scott Case (1978), offers a masterful analysis of the constitutional issues. Jean H. Baker, Affairs of Party (1983), discusses the strong partisan attachments of ordinary citizens. James M. McPherson, Battle Cry of Freedom (1988), is an engrossing narrative history of the Civil War. The most comprehensive coverage of the Confederate military effort in the East is Douglas Southall Freeman, Lee's Lieutenants, a Study in Command, 3 vol. (194244, reissued 197072); while Warren W. Hassler, Jr., Commanders of the Army of the Potomac (1962, reprinted 1979), does the same for the Federals. The ablest studies of the war in the Mississippi valley are the works by Thomas L. Connelly, Army of the Heartland: The Army of Tennessee, 18611862 (1967), and Autumn of Glory: The Army of Tennessee, 18621865 (1971). The best book on the war's greatest battle is Edwin B. Coddington, The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in Command (1968, reissued 1984). Virgil Carrington Jones, The Civil War at Sea, 3 vol. (196062), comprehensively describes the naval war. David Herbert Donald Warren W. Hassler, Jr. Reconstruction Excellent syntheses of scholarship on the Reconstruction period are Rembert W. Patrick, The Reconstruction of the Nation (1967); John Hope Franklin, Reconstruction (1961); and Kenneth M. Stampp, The Era of Reconstruction, 18651877 (1965, reprinted 1975). The fullest account of blacks' experience in the postwar years are Leon F. Litwack, Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery (1979); and Eric Foner, Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution, 18631877 (1988). C. Vann Woodward, Reunion and Reaction (1951, reissued 1966), covers behind-the-scenes political and economic negotiations in the disputed 187677 election. The definitive account of the South in the post-Reconstruction era is C. Vann Woodward, Origins of the New South, 18771913 (1951, reissued 1971). Important studies of postwar race relations include C. Vann Woodward, The Strange Career of Jim Crow, 3rd rev. ed. (1974, reissued 1982); and Joel Williamson, The Crucible of Race (1984). David Herbert Donald The transformation of American society, 18651900 (National expansion): A comprehensive study of the American frontiers of the period is Harold E. Briggs, Frontiers of the Northwest: A History of the Upper Missouri Valley (1940, reissued 1950). Walter Prescott Webb, The Great Plains (1931, reprinted 1981), is a scholarly classic; see also Ray Allen Billington and Martin Ridge, Westward Expansion, 5th ed. (1982); and Rodman W. Paul, The Far West and the Great Plains in Transition, 18591900 (1988). Henry E. Fritz, The Movement for Indian Assimilation, 18601890 (1963, reprinted 1981), traces the development of this policy after the Civil War. Two excellent studies of the occupation of the Plains by the farmers are Fred A. Shannon, The Farmer's Last Frontier: Agriculture, 18601897 (1945, reprinted 1977); and Gilbert C. Fite, The Farmers' Frontier, 18651900 (1966, reissued 1987).(Industrial development): Edward C. Kirkland, Industry Comes of Age (1961), recounts development from the Civil War to 1897. Samuel P. Hays, The Response to Industrialism, 18851914 (1957), offers a perceptive appraisal of the impact of industry on American life. The best brief summary of the role of the trade unions during the second half of the 19th century is Norman J. Ware, The Labor Movement in the United States, 18601895 (1929, reprinted 1964).(Politics): Sean Dennis Cashman, America in the Gilded Age: From the Death of Lincoln to the Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, 2nd ed. (1988), provides an overview of the era. Leonard D. White, The Republican Era, 18691901 (1958, reissued 1965), presents a careful and useful analysis. H. Wayne Morgan, From Hayes to McKinley: National Party Politics, 18771896 (1969); and Harold U. Faulkner, Politics, Reform, and Expansion, 18901900 (1959, reissued 1963), are also valuable. Studies of populism include John D. Hicks, The Populist Revolt (1931, reprinted 1981); and Lawrence Goodwyn, Democratic Promise: The Populist Moment in America (1976). Harold Whitman Bradley The Editors of the Encyclopdia Britannica Imperialism, progressivism, and America's rise to power in the world, 18961920 (American imperialism): Varying interpretations of imperialism are presented by Ernest R. May, Imperial Democracy (1961, reissued 1973); Walter LaFeber, The New Empire: An Interpretation of American Expansion, 18601898 (1963); and Richard E. Welch, Jr., Response to Imperialism: The United States and the Philippine-American War, 18991902 (1979). David F. Trask, The War with Spain (1981), is an excellent account of the Spanish-American War. Julius W. Pratt, America's Colonial Experiment (1950, reissued 1964), discusses the administration of the American overseas empire. A. Whitney Griswold, The Far Eastern Policy of the United States (1938, reissued 1966), remains the standard work; but, for the Open Door policy and relations with China, see also Tyler Dennett, John Hay: From Poetry to Politics (1933, reissued 1963). The U.S. penetration and domination of the Caribbean is most authoritatively recounted in Dana G. Munro, Intervention and Dollar Diplomacy in the Caribbean, 19001921 (1964, reprinted 1980).(The Progressive era): The best introduction to the United States during the Progressive era is John Whiteclay Chambers II, The Tyranny of Change (1980); but Arthur S. Link and Richard L. McCormick, Progressivism (1983), is also valuable. Still the standard treatment of populism is the work by John D. Hicks cited in the previous paragraph.(The rise to world power): An overview of the period is John M. Dobson, America's Ascent: The United States Becomes a Great Power, 18801914 (1978). The best surveys of American national politics from Roosevelt through Wilson are George E. Mowry, The Era of Theodore Roosevelt, 19001912 (1958, reprinted 1962); Arthur S. Link, Woodrow Wilson and the Progressive Era, 19101917 (1954, reprinted 1963); and Robert H. Ferrell, Woodrow Wilson and World War I, 19171921 (1985). On the neutrality issue, see Ernest R. May, The World War and American Isolation, 19141917 (1959); and Arthur S. Link, Wilson, 5 vol. (194765), especially the last three volumes. American mobilization is well covered by Daniel R. Beaver, Newton D. Baker and the American War Effort, 19171919 (1966); and Neil A. Wynn, From Progressivism to Prosperity: World War I and American Society (1986). Arno J. Mayer, Political Origins of the New Diplomacy, 19171918 (1959, reissued 1970), and a sequel, Politics and Diplomacy of Peacemaking: Containment and Counterrevolution at Versailles, 19181919 (1967), include a brilliant account of the development of Wilson's peace program in its worldwide context. The best study on Wilson and American diplomacy at the Paris peace conference is Arthur Walworth, Wilson and His Peacemakers (1986). For the best account of the fight over the treaty in the United States, see William C. Widenor, Henry Cabot Lodge and the Search for an American Foreign Policy (1980). Wesley M. Bagby, The Road to Normalcy: The Presidential Campaign and Election of 1920 (1962), is an excellent study. Arthur S. Link From 1920 to 1945 Geoffrey Perrett, America in the Twenties (1982), gives extensive overviews of political, social, and cultural aspects of this period. The best scholarly history is William E. Leuchtenburg, The Perils of Prosperity, 191432 (1958). Norman H. Clark, Deliver Us from Evil (1976), provides a challenging revisionist history of Prohibition. Frederick Lewis Allen, Only Yesterday (1931, reprinted 1986), is a contemporaneous account, covering all aspects of the years 191931; its companion volume is Since Yesterday (1940, reprinted 1986), on the 1930s. The standard account of politics in the 1930s is William E. Leuchtenburg, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, 19321940 (1963). J.C. Furnas, Stormy Weather: Crosslights on the Nineteen Thirties (1977), is a complete survey. Irving Bernstein, Turbulent Years: A History of the American Worker, 19331941 (1969), is authoritative. Geoffrey Perrett, Days of Sadness, Years of Triumph (1973, reprinted 1985), comprehensively covers the war years 193945. John Morton Blum, V Was for Victory: Politics and American Culture During World War II (1976), offers a critique of the war period. Military history is provided by Kenneth S. Davis, Experience of War: The United States in World War II (1965; also published as The American Experience of War, 19391945, 1967). From 1945 to the present James Gilbert, Another Chance: Postwar America, 19451985, 2nd ed. edited by R. Jackson Wilson (1986), is a useful survey. Coverage of the Cold War is provided by Ralph B. Levering, The Cold War, 19451987, 2nd ed. (1988); and John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment (1982), a brilliant analysis of U.S. Cold War policies. Burton I. Kaufman, The Korean War (1986), is a reliable overview. One of the most useful histories of the Civil Rights Movement is Taylor Branch, Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 19541963 (1988). George C. Herring, America's Longest War: The United States and Vietnam, 19501975, 2nd ed. (1986), is solid. William L. O'Neill, Coming Apart: An Informal History of America in the 1960's (1971), is a study of the quality of American life under the impact of changing social values. Frederick F. Siegel, Troubled Journey: From Pearl Harbor to Ronald Reagan (1984), analyzes the relationship between American social and cultural life and government policy. William L. O'Neill Administration and social conditions Government The national government The Mall, looking east toward the Capitol, Washington, D.C. The United States Constitution defines a federal system of government in which certain powers are delegated to the national government and others are reserved to the states. The national government consists of executive, legislative, and judicial branches that are designed, through separation of powers and checks and balances, to ensure that no one branch of government is able to subordinate the other two branches. All three branches are interrelated, each with overlapping yet quite distinct authority. Since its ratification in 1788 there have been 27 amendments to the Constitution. The first 10 amendments, adopted in 1791 and known collectively as the Bill of Rights, established a number of individual liberties, including speech, religion, the press, and the rights of the criminally accused. Among other important amendments are the Thirteenth (1865), which abolished slavery; the Fourteenth (1868), which granted citizenship rights to former slaves and guaranteed to every citizen due process and equal protection of the laws; the Fifteenth (1870), which granted voting rights to former male slaves; the Seventeenth (1913), which provided for the direct election of U.S. senators; the Nineteenth (1920), which established woman suffrage; the Twenty-Second (1951), which limited a president to a maximum of two elected terms in office; and the Twenty-Sixth (1971), which extended voting rights to all citizens 18 years of age or older. Amending the Constitution requires a proposal by a two-thirds vote of both houses of Congress or by a national convention, followed by ratification by three-fourths of the state legislatures or state conventions. The executive branch The executive branch is headed by the president, who must be a natural-born citizen of the United States, at least 35 years old, and a resident of the country for at least 14 years. The president's official residence and office is the White House in Washington, D.C. The formal constitutional responsibilities vested in the presidency of the United States include serving as commander in chief of the armed forces; negotiating treaties; appointing federal judges, ambassadors, and cabinet officials; and acting as head of state. In practice, presidential powers have expanded to include drafting legislation, formulating foreign policy, conducting personal diplomacy, and leading the president's political party. The members of the president's cabinetthe attorney general and the secretaries of State, Treasury, Defense, Interior, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, Education, Energy, and Veterans Affairsare appointed by the president with the approval of the Senate; although they are described in the Twenty-Fifth Amendment as the principal officers of the executive departments, significant power has flowed to non-cabinet-level presidential aides, such as those serving in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Council of Economic Advisers, the National Security Council (NSC), and the office of the White House Chief of Staff.

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