Sunday, August 18, 2019
Literature Reflects Life in The Gilded Age :: Literature Essays Literary Criticism
Literature Reflects Life in The Gilded Age As immigrants began to flood into America in the late 1800's and early 1900's, they had hopes of a miraculous new life in the Land of the Free. They may have thought that they would not have to live in cramped and unsanitary conditions as they had in their old homes. They may have had hopes of finding a great new career that would skyrocket them to fame and fortune and allow them to live like the Carnegies, Rockefellers, and Morgans did. It could be possible that all their hopes were assured once they caught sight of the New York City skyline, expanding as far as the eye could see and stretching like arms spread welcoming home a loved one. The sun may have been shining bright and golden, bathing the not-so-distant city in a fantastic light. At a distance it was quite possibly one of the most exquisite sights that their eyes had ever come upon. However, the land that looked so beautiful and grand from the distance was actually filled with greed, corruption, and opportunists. That is h ow America can be described during the Gilded Age. The wrapping was pretty, but the present was awful. Such wealthy entrepreneurs as the Rockefellers and Carnegies helped to make America the beauty that she was on the outside, but to an extent they also contributed to the rotten inside. America's new European residents lived in cramped apartments and worked in unsafe factories. The factories housed the latest technology of the Gilded Age, the assembly line. The mass production that the assembly line brought about made the rich richer, but did nothing to help the poor. They were working long hours in sometimes extremely dangerous conditions. Injuries and even deaths would occur due to faulty machinery or exhausted employees, but these occurrences were often ignored or covered up to avoid any bad publicity. As the immigrants flooded the big cities seeking jobs, other Americans headed west with the expansion of the railroad. However, nobody seemed to take into consideration that they would be intruding on the American Indian's territory. It also seemed that no one cared. America was gree dy for land that lay to the west and would be quite deceitful in getting the land that they wanted. The American Indians were pushed further and further west, and their tribes began to dwindle.