History Coursework – Depth Study C: The USA, 1919-1941
Assignment A: Question 1
Did Roosevelt’s upbringing, background and character make it easy for him to understand the concerns and fears of ordinary Americans? Explain your answer. To understand if Roosevelt knew and understood the problems fears and concerns we have to take a look at him and his upbringing. Roosevelt was born in 1882 to a rich family of land owners, who were privileged, had good connections and were financially secured. He grew up in a rich environment were friends and other families had a lot of money as well. It is said that his mother was quiet protective and fact is that Roosevelt was teached at home meaning he had no connection to ordinary Americans. Ordianary Americans at the time were no where near him in terms of social class and money and so how could Roosevelt possibly understand the needs of ordinary Americans? Private teaching again was a privilege which was reserved for very rich families at the time. This made it difficult for him to understand some of the problems about the American education because some problems can only be realized when one experience them. He also never experienced any problems to do with money or finding a job since everything was laid to his feet Roosevelt then went to Harvard University where he could maybe experience some of the problems of education but again Harvard University is not a University for ordinary people. Hardly anyone back then without a lot of money was able to visit Harvard University. After University he married his cousin Eleanor Roosevelt in 1905. Eleanor was the daughter of Elliott Roosevel who was the brother of Theodor Roosevelt who again was the President of America from 1901 to 1909. This meant to Franklin had really good connections which probably smoothed his way to become a successful Politian meaning he didn’t have to work for it. Roosevelt joined the American Democratic Party because there were already Roosevelt’s in the Republican Party. On the other side, his character did help Roosevelt. To become part of the New York State Senate Roosevelt drove around in his car, giving speeches and talking to people which soon made him a well-known person. He was an excellent speaker which is an attribute that is very important to rise in the ranks of a Politian. While he traveled around he surely got to know some of the problems and concerns of the ordinary Americans there are many occasions where he went to the people and asked them about their problems and concerns. When Roosevelt was stricken by polio at the age of 39 it looked quiet bad for his career but he never lost determination and even though he had to use a wheelchair he still went on. This could have also brought him closer to the ordinary Americans since he actually had to fight for something. I think that Roosevelts background didn’t help him at all to understand ordinary Americans since during his childhood he was never in the position of ordinary Americans. His upbringing also didn’t really help him since he came from a rich family with good connections and so there was no one in the family who was on the same level as an ordinary American. On the other side his character game him a big advantage since he was a good speaker and cared about the people, or at least he listened to their concerns.
2. How far was Roosevelt himself responsible for his election victory in 1932? Explain your answer. In during the Presidential elections in 1932 in America, two candidate were running for the President. It was Franklin D. Roosevelt for the Democratic party and Herber Hoober for the Republican Party. During the time of the election, America was shocked by the Depression, everyone had lost some of their prosperity, so everyone was looking for a president who would guide them through the Depression and restore prosperity. The two candidates had very different believes about how to deal with the Depression. Hoover believed that the...
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