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The Bosses Of The Senate

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“The Bosses of the Senate.”
AJ Calvert

This cartoon depicts corporate interests in the end of the 19th century. Further analysis of the cartoon shows that the “people’s entrance” is bolted shut (a metaphor for the middle to lower class, who feel that large businesses and monopolies have gained substantially more political power than their counterparts. The sign in the back states, “This is a Senate of the Monopolists, by the Monopolists, for the Monopolists.” This is another way of criticizing the government with a somewhat satirical approach. The size of the businessmen in comparison with the Senate is another representation of their control over the Senate. The Monopolists are depicted by representing their interest in various industries (such as coal, iron, steel, oil, copper, etc.) and the impact that those industries have on the senate. These oversized monopolists represent large corporation owners of the day, such as Vanderbilt, Carnegie, and Rockefeller. The overall theme of this cartoon is political corruption, and it intends to bring the issue to surface on a larger stage.

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