The American Work Ethic and the Changing Work Force: An Historical Perspective

By Herbert Applebaum | Go to book overview

1
THE AMERICAN WORK ETHIC
IN THE COLONIAL PERIOD

Colonial American history is about a land that was wild and unspoiled, about a people full of hope and opportunity, and about a culture brimming over with youth and energy. It was a time when America was greening, with its vast canopy of forests and unspoiled mountains, its rivers and lakes all teaming with fish, and game roaming the grassy plains, woods, and deserts, while at night, only a few sparkles of light appeared from campfires lit by human hands. It was also a land filled with mystery, unpredictability, savagery, and imagined horrors. After nearly two hundred years, colonial Americans in 1790 still only numbered 3,900,000, and most of them lived within fifty miles of the Atlantic Ocean. It was an abundant land nurturing many Native Americans who lived in balance with their environment, but both the land and the Native-American cultures would soon be overrun by men and women imbued with a sense of mission, believing they were favored by Providence to take control of the New World.

Colonial America represents half of U.S. history, two centuries out of four since the founding of Jamestown in 1607. It is also the period when the framework for governing the country was fashioned, a framework which remarkably has withstood the tests, changes, and challenges of societal and cultural transformations over the last two hundred years. Finally, the colonial period was the time when the ideology of work, the American work ethic, took root, and that too has withstood the test of time. Americans still value work and still consider it an obligation to society, to oneself, and to one's family.

One of the striking things about life in colonial America was the informality, as well as the uncertainty in all aspects of life, including work. Work did not proceed according to the clock nor any regular or regimented routine. If the winter was harsh and the harbor froze, the artisan might not have enough materials to carry on his work. Like the artisan, the farmer was faced with uncertainties, being subject to the vicissitudes of weather, varying fertilities of soils, and insects and pests which

-3-

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 ...
Default project is now your active project.
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 American Work Ethic and the Changing Work Force: An Historical Perspective
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
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?

Help
Full screen
/ 228

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    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

    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.