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Progressivism & Mass Culture, 1880-1920 Study Guide

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The rise of the professional class: optimistic, educated, determined to make America achieve perfection. They had their work cut out for them! Scandals, poverty, Jim Crow laws, killers, and anarchists abounded.

Meanwhile, a new national media--foreseen by no one--screams must-read stories in a lurid mix of fine reporting and sleaze-mongering. Abusive insane asylums. Diseased meat. Lynchings. And more. These were the topics of the Muckrakers--a new class of journalism for a startlingly modern world.

It was a wild time, but it didn't end with a whimper. Instead, it sank beneath the waves when the world was engulfed in a world war.

* * * I believe before students care about trends and random facts, they must first be captivated by amazing stories and extreme characters. We must hook them emotionally before we can appeal to their reason. So, when I write Study Guides and their keys, I think in terms of plot and character. And I look at several sources. * * *

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