Changing society


The Progressive era stands out as a time when reformers sought to address social ills brought about by a rapidly changing society. Debates surrounded issues such as political corruption, the regulation of business practices, racial equality, women’s suffrage and the living conditions of impoverished immigrants overcrowded into urban slums.

In order to prepare for this discussion forum:

  • Review and identify the relevant sections of Chapter 22 that support your discussion.
  • Read Booker T. Washington’s speech The Atlanta Compromise
  • Read W.E.B. Du Bois The Niagara Movement
  • The Niagara Movement’s “Declaration of Principles” by W.E.B.Du Bois
  • The Women’s Suffrage Movement
  • Excerpt from How the Other Half Lives by Jacob Riis and the photography of Jacob Riis.

After you have completed your readings post a response to only ONE of the following questions.

  1. Compare and contrast the ideas of Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois. In your opinion, which of these two men had a better plan? Explain why.
  2.  When it came to the issue of suffrage, did all women agree?  Explain.
  3.  Which social problem was Jacob Riis addressing through his work?  How did he communicate the severity of this problem?

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