Fighting for the American Manhood Essay Example
Fighting for the American Manhood Essay Example

Fighting for the American Manhood Essay Example

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  • Pages: 9 (2355 words)
  • Published: December 13, 2021
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Kristin Hoganson indicates that the calls for the America to join the Cuban conflict came from different points of view in the times that led to the conflict. The supporters gave economic reasons such as national strategy analysts, imperialist aspirations, the Cuban independence movement sympathy and other various reasons in the advocacy for the intervention of the US. Kristine argues that there was only one way to understand the claims that underlie and that unite the varied reasoning that is to examine the framework of culture within which the actors from the US made their claims. She thus argues that the dominant cultural gender understanding, specifically manliness, significantly impacted on the way the politicians made their decisions concerning the Cuban situation (Kristin, 375).

Thus, regardless of the diverse reasoning, the US politicians have a common under


standing of the obligations and character of the manly authority, both in the public sphere and the fewer private sectors of international relations. The gendered rhetoric that significantly surrounded the conflict in Cuba betrays the degree in how the war advocates in the US, such as Albert beverage, Alfred Mayan Thayer, and Teddy Roosevelt used the notion of assertive and strong manhood in bringing supporters together that had a vastly different interest for the cause of the Cuban war.

The 1898 war

The historian Louis Perez offers an alternative perspective on the 1898 conflict. He indicates that even by referring to the conflict as Spanish-American war is an exclusion of the place of the Cuba people. He would rather likely consider the war in a global system’s context that includes a close and careful assessment of the Cuban sources. Despite the US goin

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to war with supporting the Libre cause of Cuban, rhetorically, their domination of the island had been key for quite long, to the US interest and security. The leaders of the independence movement of Cuba together with their followers contributed decisively to the efforts of war, the welfare and health of the US soldiers, and yet the military command of the country dismissed these contributions. The people of Cuba were excluded completely from the negotiations which later brought an end to the war.

Thus, the independence movement of the country became completely obscured and finally thwarted by the larger national goals of the US and the policy that made stabilization a qualification for the self-determination of Cuba. The US continued their surveillance on the affairs of Cuba, and this was ensured Platt amendment. Perez argues that the removal of the contributions of Cuba to the efforts of war and their self-determination claims were important to the implementation of a successful domination by the US and the historical writing. This resulted to a historiography that does not recognize the involvement of the US in the war being part of the goals of their foreign policy that are long-standing and fail to take into consideration the essential place of the people of Cuba and their interests.

The foreign relations of America according to the Cambridge history

The supports for the war of Spaniards and Americans as many of the historians have claimed fueled by the press of America about the Maine sinking in Havana Cuba. Walter Lafeber, also a historian argues that President McKinley was not influenced entirely by the American press, but for quite some time set his sights

on Philippines and Cuba. After he was first elected, the president had argued that he was against conquest wars, but as time went by and the Caribbean problems escalated, and at the same time the investments of the US continued to get threatened in that country, McKinley realized that he had to amend his foreign policy. Walter argues that through a calculated and careful process, McKinley, through his terms, brought a nation that was initially united into war. President McKinley should have gathered support for his plans on an economic, political and military level. First, the president conferred with his advisers in the military and came to the conclusion that Spain was not one of the formidable foes, but was among those the US could easily defeat (Walter, 138).

Again, he should have ensured security support from the business community of the US. Instead, he argued that the war was not going to arm the investments but helped in protecting them. Through subduing the problems ongoing in the Caribbean, the president held that Americans would stimulate the profits from, steel, textiles, iron and the processing of food. Lastly, McKinley had to deal with the Congress. The Congress supported overwhelmingly, the war with Spain but was unable to decide on whether or not they were going to recognize the revolutionary government of Cuba. Through not able to recognize this government of Cuba, McKinley would be able to secure the action of freedom and once thwart the control by the Spaniards. Lafeber indicates that the president forced the senate and house not to recognize the new government of Cuba so as to be able to allow the freedom

of action at the widest during the war aftermath. At last, it was the president himself who sought actively, the control in the South Pacific and the Caribbean in the plan to secure the future investments of the US.

The Cuban Perspective

According to Gregory a historian, the traditional view, and perspective on the Spanish-American war begin with the US Maine and battle ship which had an infamous explosion and proceeded through the convincing of the American navy and army victories. Gregory argues that the narrative is lacking an item: does not include the views form the people of Cuba themselves. He further asserts that the even the name that was used to assign the war also seems to ignore the facts of Cuba who were the major participants in the war involved from the very beginning. As per his arguments, the fight against the Spaniards and which was joined by the US had already been carried on by the people of Cuba for some time before. Traditionally, the historians view this entrant of the US into this Cuban revolution and war as being a prerequisite to the Spaniards defeat on the island. From the perspective of the Cubans the interpretation ids subject to open debate as it is the motivation of the Americans to join the conflict. The second war of Cuba for independence had begun towards the end of February 1895 (Gregory, 875).

There was a previous attempt to overthrow the rulers of Cuban Spanish rulers that had been defeated in 1878, but the years of intervention had not made any improvement to the Cuban people’s status. While the use of the Spanish and Cuban terms

may be an implication that the two sides represented two different backgrounds, this is not the case. According to him, the population of the Indians of the island had been essentially eliminated during the beginning of the colonization process, and thus no foreign immigrants were allowed. As a result, every four out of five Cubans were Spaniards or a second or third or fourth Spanish descent generation. The remaining, one out of five Cubans were Mullatos Creole and represented descendants to the former African slaves. Gregory thus asserts that this was supposed to mean, for the greater part, the revolution of the Cubans was a civil war between the monarchists from Spain and Cuban Republicans.

American Economic Imperialism

Allan writes in his article that the US entered into war with Spaniards on behalf of Cuba with a view of stopping the humanitarian disaster in the country and help in granting the country its independence. Cuba, which was a Spaniard colony for 400 years, had fought on this issue for quite some time since 1866 (Beaman, 693). Gregory writes that the war which ended quickly with the decisive victory of the US military led to the taking hold of the colonial possessions of Spain by the Americans. The US then found itself being a major player in the world with a lot of influence in Guam, Puerto Rico, Philippines, and Cuba. The Americans became an imperial power during the 1898 summer along with the Hawaii annexation. Gregory also asserts that forever 114 years the opinions on Americans actions during those times took very many adaptations.

He argues that after a close examination of the Spanish-American war basing on the

war and economic expansions economically, the war is itself seen in one piece of a very larger picture that has inclusive of the American expansion trend overseas. To be able to understand the case of the US during the period of the war, it is also important to understand the overall context. The record of the history explains the time as a blending to the manifest destiny concept with new interpretations of the doctrine of Monroe and the new perceptions on the character of the Americans, together with the crippling depression that led to labor unrest that changed the discussion of the economy.

Power, Domestic Politics, and the Spanish-American War

The account by the Americans on the Spanish-American war puts some emphasis on the fight of the people of Cuba for their independence and the speedy victories of the US in the Pacific and the Caribbean, which was described as a splendid little war by John Hay, the secretary of state. As Wang puts it, the Spaniards dubbed the events like the disaster of the 98, which indicates the magnitude of a psychological disintegration of the empire (Wang, 231). This is because the war cemented the rise to power of the US and the fall of the Spaniards in the western hemisphere. According to Bella, the war supports the theory of power transition which is a prediction of those wars are bound to happen when a country is rising to power as the US did and the clash with states in the status quo levels to retain the power as Spain was doing.

According to him, the Spanish leaders were aware that they could never win the war

a fact that brings a puzzle. Bella asks himself; was the US pursuing the war so as to attain regional hegemony, and if that was the case, why would Spain decide to fight such a costly war that was very humiliating rather than settling the disputes in an amicable way? Bella further argues that cha balance of power that was changing then increased the war chances because the politics of democracy made the US undergo a transition of revisionist power as the Spanish troubles in democracy made the Spaniards towards the defending of the status quo.

Annotated Bibliography

  • Humphreys, R. A.. “The Historiography of the Spanish-American Revolutions”. The Hispanic American Historical Review 36.1 (1956): 81–93. Web.

Humphreys is the argument that the wars in Spanish-America were a series of military campaigns that lasted for a long period. The author attributes the war to political, biographical, military and diplomatic aspects of the revolutionary. Humphreys’ piece of work highlights the main events that caused the wars. The author contends that the revolutionary period of Spanish- American was as a result of the dissolution of the Spanish monarchy from the French invasion. Similar arguments are echoed in different works of Chasteen, who supports Humphrey in that all the intentions and objectives of Spanish- American independence movements started with the imprisonment and abdication of the Spanish King.

  • Altman, Ida. “The Revolt of Enriquillo and the Historiography of Early Spanish America”. The Americas 63.4 (2007): 587–614. Web.

Altman and Ida are for the idea that the revolutionary movements in Spanish- America was basically on military, political and economic aspects. These authors do a remarkable analysis of breaking down the phases of the revolution

into the imperial crisis, forging of Spanish American identity and also nationalistic tendencies in the area. The author main analysis are drawn back to the imperial crisis as the primary source of the Spanish American revolutions.

  • DE LA REZA, Germán A.. “HOW SPANISH AMERICA DISINTEGRATED: SELECTED CROSS-NATIONAL FACTORS”. Revista de Historia de América 140 (2009): 9–31. Web.

De la Reza offers a great work that traces the war to a general impulse on the part of the American public opinion. A more sophisticated form of this interpretation has been advanced by different historians like Richard Hofstadter. The authors wonder how newspaper Titans were able to exploit the public opinion. A major analysis of the war according to this author is that psychological dilemmas arising from the depression of the 1890’s made America react irrationally due to the tension and fear and open to exploitation.

  • Weber, David J.. “John Francis Bannon and the Historiography of the Spanish Borderlands: Retrospect and Prospect”. Journal of the Southwest 29.4 (1987): 331– 363. Web.

Weber and David holds a different perspective on the advent of the Spanish - America war. The author believes that the United States went to war due to humanitarian reasons. He believes that the united States were out to free Cuba from the horrors and tribulations of Spanish policies and give Cuba democratic institutions. The initial impulse resulted in American protectorate over Cuba and Puerto Rico and American participation in quarrels on the Asian mainland.

  • Murray, John. “Reflections on the 'liberators' of Spanish America”. Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review 42.168 (1953): 381–394. Web.

The author’s interpretation best analysis for a historical background of the Spanish American Revolutions offers a

regional and a chronological assessment of the period with supportive arguments. The author believes the events beginning with Spain’s constitutional crisis led to the independence of the colonies. Murray sees Bourbon reforms as the catalyst for the independence movements with the Spanish crisis as a chance to strive for freedom.

  • Robertson, William Spence. “Russia and the Emancipation of Spanish America, 1816- 1826”. The Hispanic American Historical Review 21.2 (1941): 196–221. Web.

Robertson and William hold a view that attributes the war to the economic drive that carried nations to the war. The authors argue that the rapid industrialization in the United States after 1840 was a major result of the war. The authors are keen to note the period of the years 1893 to 1897 whereby the United States experienced the worst plunge. Government and business leaders allowed war to open overseas market.

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