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mirza's avatar

Would you clharecterize the post-civil war industrial leaders as "robber barons" or "industrial statesmen"? Why?

Asked by mirza (5042points) October 6th, 2007
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

5 Answers

freerangemonkey's avatar

It depends. Is this for a high school or college essay?

gooch's avatar

robber barrons because they took advantage of people who were in need.

mirza's avatar

@freerange: college essay

hossman's avatar

Way too broad a question. It depends on which leaders you are talking about, and from whose perspective. While it is currently politically correct to refer to them as “robber barons,” that is too simplistic. Jobs were provided. Colleges and hospitals were built. Products were innovated. Economies were advanced. Sure, it’s easy to complain from today’s perspective about that worker in barely adequate factory conditions working a 60 hour work week, IF you forget they are there because that “robber baron’s” job has allowed them to leave the completely dangerous coal mining job, starving to death working long hours on a failing tobacco farm, etc. gooch needs to be a lot more specific when he says they “took advantage of people who were in need.” If you look at any powerful group, you can focus on the good they did, or the bad, or you can be intellectually honest and try to examine both.

TysonEdwards's avatar

Honestly I would take a different approach and say that the leaders of the post civil war industrial era were no different than the leaders previous to that point. As a whole, they wished to see an provement in the style of lives for themselves and others.

While this era was filled with many who essencially doomed some of their population to poverty, they acted no different than the way that previous leaders did.

They are viewed negatively in history not because of their actions but for their successes and how easily they played a part in changing our world.

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