In spite of this, Turner laments, the frontier has received little serious study from historians and economists. Nevertheless, he made it clear that his historical writing was shaped by a contemporary agenda. It explained why the American people and American government were so different from their European counterparts. He asked why the Turnerian American character was limited to English settlements in the New World, and why the frontier did not produce that same character among Native Americans and Spaniards. Cooperation and communities of various sorts, not isolated individuals, made possible the absorption of the West into the United States. Disneyland ‘s Frontierland of the mid to late 20th century reflected the myth of rugged individualism that celebrated what was perceived to be the American heritage. Internet URLs are the best.

John Perry Barlow , along with Mitch Kapor , promoted the idea of cyberspace the realm of telecommunication as an “electronic frontier” beyond the borders of any physically based government, in which freedom and self-determination could be fully realized. Turner’s emphasis on the importance of the frontier in shaping American character influenced the interpretation found in thousands of scholarly histories. Awarded his doctorate in , he was one of the first historians professionally trained in the United States rather than Europe. He asked why the Turnerian American character was limited to English settlements in the New World, and why the frontier did not produce that same character among Native Americans and Spaniards. He elaborates by stating,.

The mainstream of the profession has long since discarded Turner’s assumption that the frontier is the key to American history as a whole; they point instead to the critical influence of such factors as slavery and the Civil War, immigration, and the development of industrial capitalism. Thesus, the belief that free political institutions of the United States spawned in ancient Germanic forests endured well into the s.


It came out of the American forest, and it gained new strength each time it touched a new frontier. His critics have denied frpntier from his basic assumptions to the small details of his argument. Limerick points out that Kennedy assumed that “the campaigns of the Old Frontier had been successful, and morally justified. They were written between September and July You are commenting using your WordPress.

Crucible of Empire – PBS Online

Contact our editors with your feedback. In Search of the European and American mind pp. It was popular among New Dealers—Franklin Roosevelt and his top aides [19] thought in terms of finding new frontiers.

He won wide acclaim among historians and intellectuals. Although almost thexis ignored at the time, Turner’s lecture eventually gained such wide distribution and influence that a contemporary scholar has called it “the single most influential piece of writing in the history of American history.

Nash, “The frontier thesis: John, ” Turner, Beard, Chandler: Frontier land was practically free for the taking.

frederick jackson turners frontier thesis 1893

They also became more violent, more individualistic, more distrustful of authority, less artistic, less scientific, and more dependent on ad-hoc organizations they formed themselves. Turner took this “closing of the frontier” as an opportunity to reflect upon the influence it had exercised. Email required Address never made public.

Comps Notes: Frederick Jackson Turner’s “The Significance of the Frontier in American History”

The follow-up to that study, The United States, — Thank you for your feedback. One Comment Add yours Pingback: Any text you add should be original, not copied from other sources. The public has ignored academic historians’ anti-Turnerian models, largely because they conflict with and often destroy the icons of Western heritage. Boles, “Turner, the frontier, and the study of religion in America,” Journal of the Early Republic 13 2 pp.


The more foreboding and cautionary tale which increasing numbers of Western historians have offered in place of Turner’s account has provoked sharp controversy. Furthermore, there is a need to escape the confines of the State.

frederick jackson turners frontier thesis 1893

In these writings Turner promoted new methods in historical research, including the techniques of the freederick founded social sciences, and urged his colleagues to study new topics such as immigration, urbanization, economic development, and social and cultural history. Addresses and Opinions of Franklin Delano Roosevelt p. Turner’s contribution to American history was to argue that the frontier past best explained the distinctive history of the United States.

Prehistory Pre-Columbian Colonial — — — — — — — — — —present. The Frontier Thesis or Turner Thesisis the argument advanced by historian Frederick Jackson Turner in that American democracy was formed by fredegick American frontier.

Frederick Jackson Turner, The Frontier Thesis ()

In our understanding of what we are as a nation, if on no other level, the Western past continues to define us today. History of the United States. Inmedieval historian Carl Stephenson published an extended article refuting the Germanic germ theory. Post was not sent – check your email thezis Poor health forced his early retirement from Harvard in However, the work of historians during the s—s, some of whom sought to bury Turner’s conception of the frontier, and others who sought to spare the concept but with nuance, have done much to place Western myths in context.