From Progressivism to Prosperity: World War I and American Society

By Neil A. Wynn | Go to book overview

2
From Peace to War
1914-1917

Among the many concerns of American Progressives was the cause of international peace. Between 1900 and 1914 some forty-five different peace organizations were established in America, and the membership embraced "an impressive number of the nation's political, business, religious, and academic leaders" including, among others, President Wilson, former President Taft, and both Andrew Carnegie, president of the New York Peace Society and founder of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and Jane Addams, a leading officer in the American Peace Society. Indeed, as Roland Marchand has pointed out, the diversity of the campaign for peace was a reflection of the breadth of progressivism itself. The common factor was a "longing for order, for stability, for regularity" at home and abroad, and an optimistic belief that reason could triumph over irrationalism in order to achieve this goal. War was the very antithesis of reform: "the devil's answer to human progress."1 Thus, the outbreak of war in Europe in August 1914 was greeted with a mixture of horror and disbelief. Jane Addams wrote of her "astonishment that such an archaic institution should be revived in modern Europe," and of "that basic sense of desolation, of suicide, of anachronism, which the first news of the war brought to thousands of men and women who had come to consider war as a throwback in the scientific sense." The New York Times went further and suggested that in failing to prevent war the Europeans had revealed their

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From Progressivism to Prosperity: World War I and American Society
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • From Progressivism to Prosperity *
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Note on Sources xi
  • Introduction War, Reform, and Social Change— the First World War in American History xiii
  • Notes xx
  • From Progressivism to Prosperity *
  • 1: The Progressive Era American Society, 1900-1914 1
  • Notes 23
  • 2: From Peace to War 1914-1917 26
  • Notes 38
  • 3: Mobilizing the Population for War Propaganda and Civil Liberties 41
  • Notes 61
  • 4: Organizing for War Government, Business, and the Economy 65
  • Notes 82
  • 5: Labor and the War 86
  • Notes 124
  • 6: War, Women, and the Family 133
  • Notes 163
  • 7: Black Americans and the First World War 170
  • Notes 191
  • 8: The Aftermath of War Reconstruction, Red Scare, and the 1920s 196
  • Notes 221
  • Epilogue from Progressivism to Prosperity: the First World War in Perspective 226
  • Notes 236
  • Bibliography 239
  • Index 257
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