The Making of American Exceptionalism: The Knights of Labor and Class Formation in the Nineteenth Century

By Kim Voss | Go to book overview

INTRODUCTION Working-Class Formation and the Knights of Labor

The late nineteenth century saw the emergence of many features that we today associate with "American exceptionalism."1. In the mid 1870s the American labor movement did not differ significantly from labor movements in England and France, two countries at roughly the same stage of capitalist development. All were primarily movements of skilled craft workers, all shared broad similarities in rhetoric and behavior. By the early twentieth century, however, the American labor movement had begun to stand apart. Whereas workers in France and England had incorporated less-skilled wage earners into

____________________
1.
The debate over American exceptionalism dates from the publication of Werner Sombart 's 1906 book, Why Is There No Socialism in the United States? trans. Patricia M. Hocking and C. T. Husbands (rpt. White Plains, N.Y.: International Arts and Sciences Press, 1976). An insightful treatment of both Sombart and the issue of American socialism can be found in Jerome Karabel, "The Failure of American Socialism Reconsidered," The Socialist Register 18 ( 1979): 204-27. Other recent efforts to grapple with American exceptionalism include John M. Laslett and Seymour Martin Lipset, eds., Failure of a Dream: Essays in the History of American Socialism ( Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor, 1974); Mike Davis, "Why the U.S. Working Class Is Different," New Left Review 123 ( 1980): 5-44; Michael Shalev and Walter Korpi, "Working Class Mobilization and American Exceptionalism," Economic and Industrial Democracy 1 ( 1980): 31-61; Sean Wilentz, "Against Exceptionalism: Class Consciousness and the American Labor Movement, 1790-1920," International Labor and Working Class History 26 ( 1984): 1-24; Eric Foner, "Why Is There No Socialism in America?" History Workshop 17 ( 1984): 57-80; Richard Oestreicher, "Urban Working- Class Political Behavior and Theories of American Electoral Politics, 1870-1940," Journal of American History 74 ( 1988): 1257-86; Byron E. Shafer, ed., Is America Different? A New Look at American Exceptionalism ( Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991); and Ian Tyrrell, "American Exceptionalism in an Age of International History," American Historical Review 96 ( 1991): 1031-55.

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Making of American Exceptionalism: The Knights of Labor and Class Formation in the Nineteenth Century
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 296

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.