Monthly Archives: September 2015

Artifact Project

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World War II ended in September of 1995, but the United States military was still active in Japan especially, for years to follow. As with any war, the day that one side claims a victory, is not necessarily the day that all military activity is completely stopped and this was true after the end of World War II. Since my grandfather was born in 1927, he was rejected from the military during the war because he was too young, but he was stationed on a ship off the coast of Japan during the late 1940’s after the end of World War II. During his time in the military, he was issued a side arm sword by the U.S. Military. Although the war was over, the Allied Powers were still actively trying to permanently demilitarize certain areas to prevent those nations ability to continue fighting. This was why my grandfather was given this small sword to defend himself with, while he was active in the military. The second World War was a very important war in many ways, but especially the military weapons that were used, which is one of many reasons why this artifact represents such significance to American history.

World War II, and many other wars and events, can connect to a large recurring theme of American history which is the United State’s desire for expansion and control. This connects well to the topic of the frontier according to Frederick Jackson Turner, which we talked about in depth in our American Studies Class. Turner’s paper on the frontier explains the American desire for expansion into a land that we essentially stole from the Native American Indians, when settlers first came to the United States. Over 300 years after the arrival of these settlers, something similar came up in the end of World War II. After the war ended, the United States continued to control Japan and this was very alike to what Turner reflects on, as well as many other similar situations throughout American History. This directly relates to my artifact because of my grandfathers role in the United States Military, which was evident only after the Allied Powers had successfully defeated Japan.

Works cited- history.state.govtheatlantic.comhistory.army.mil

Interview Project

Interview Recording

In November of 1979, more than 50 Americans were taken hostage in the US Embassy in Iran. In the midst of the Iranian Revolution, the United States was lead by President Jimmy Carter. At this same time many of the people of Iran were strongly against the Shah, which is why these people became infuriated when President Carter allowed the Shah into the United States to receive treatment for an illness. This was an especially difficult time for the leader of the United States because the instability in Iran tested the United States foreign policies. The hostage crisis was a direct result of the peoples anger with the United States for seemingly supporting the Shah, who was so strongly disliked in Iran. The hostages were kept until January of 1981, almost immediately after a new president of the United States was sworn in; Ronald Reagan. This event was an important event in American history, especially because of the amount of media coverage surrounding the crisis.

Resources for further reading: whrhs.orgpbs.org

Quote 1) It was recalled how much of a difference could be made between Reagan’s approach to rescuing the hostages versus Carter’s approach.

“The reality was Carter tried to use diplomacy and negotiate with them and that just didn’t work, and then Reagan came in and his whole philosophy was one of military strength.” (3:30-3:43)

Quote 2) The amount of media coverage reflected the vast importance of this crisis, which was translated through the nightly news.

“Every night that was all the news was; it was about the hostages, and maybe nothing even happened that day but that was the focus.” (4:52-5:00)

Get Culture

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Many traditions throughout the cultures of the world involve food in some way. We often associate specific foods with holidays that are a large part of certain countries cultures, individual places in the world, or the people of different cultures. Following this idea, food is definitely a large part of American culture. To explore something that we thought of as American culture, two of my friends and I went to the Villa, which is a restaurant in Charlottesville that is well known for their breakfast. Eggs, biscuits, hash browns, American bacon, and chocolate chip pancakes are some of many common breakfast foods which envelop the typical Saturday or Sunday morning for people of all ages in America. The food itself is not the only aspect of American culture that we experienced going to the Villa this past weekend either. The atmosphere that people feel anywhere is also unique to the culture they are experiencing. Which is why, in my opinion, the atmosphere in the Villa also reflects American culture. This is especially true for restaurants all around the world. The busy atmosphere that we experienced in the this small but packed diner late Saturday morning was one of the many unique cultural aspects to life in America.