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Was the New Deal a success? Source based work.

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George Bragg - 4.5 Mr. Beavington 25th August 4th year History Coursework: Assignment B/Objective 3 - Was the New Deal a success? Question 1 - Source A tells us why people supported Roosevelt in the 1932 election because Roosevelt shows many speech giving techniques to persuade the listener. His speech is a patriotic war appeal to America and he uses alliteration to represent the depression, 'Destruction, Delay, Deceit and Despair.' Those four things are the so-called 'war' that he is fighting against and it is this sentence that would have been the headlines the following morning. He talks about 'us' and 'we,' including the listener with him so he is acting as one of the people, not like a dictator who is planning to do things against their will. He uses very personal words such as 'I pledge you, I pledge you,' to try and appeal to the public in a personal way. The speech stresses that Roosevelt is not simply trying to win votes but his aims are for the benefit of the public. When outbreaks of poliomyelitis spread across America in 1921, Roosevelt contracted Polio at the age of 39. He slowly became wheelchair bound but still managed to become the leader of the democrat party and won the sympathy vote from thousands of undecided people. He won respect and managed to overcome the difficulties of Polio, and it was a sign of strength; that if he overcame Polio that he might have a good chance of overcoming the Depression. President Hoover is appealing to the rich people and the hard workers, saying that you should work for your money and not get help from the government. This concept was called rugged individualism and is represents what the Republicans stood for. This had been tested and failed and was becoming very unpopular with the American people, and the people it did please, the rich and hard workers were the minority of the population. ...read more.


It was also after the election so not propaganda by Roosevelt. Source H was part of Roosevelt's election campaign and therefore is bound to be biased or even altered to promote him. The couple who allegedly wrote it may not have even written the letter. The letter itself is only showing the opinion of two people, which certainly does not represent America's public opinion, The only hint that everyone is supporting him is the sentence 'We join millions of others in praying for you every night.' It is only one positive letter and it may have been the only positive letter out of thousands of negative ones. However this is unlikely because Roosevelt one the election with a landslide, so it does suggest that he did have a good public opinion. The letter supports Roosevelt's fireside chat image. He got the letter and sent someone round to deal with the problem. This shows a personal concern for individual members of the public and the letter picks out what Roosevelt thought was important. In source I, there are certain lines that are particular and would relate to the people who sang it. 'He's got things in full swing, we're all working and getting our pay,' would relate to many of the people who sang the song. However the song may have become very popular because of the tune that people liked, or because it was 'catchy.' Certain lines in the song may have been added simply for a rhyming effect and are not necessarily true. It does not give many specific details and is therefore less useful to the historian, but probably a more reliable source. Question 6 - Sources J and K disagree about the New Deal mainly because S.B.Fuller, who wrote source J, is a republican and Frances Perkins is a Democrat and the secretary of Labour in Roosevelt's New Deal. They come from two different governments that support two different ideas. ...read more.


The cartoon emphasizes that Roosevelt used billions of dollars to try and make the New Deal a success and he only got minimal results from it. This point is made briefly in interpretation 2. ' The New Deal wasted a lot of money.' This cartoon is reliable because it was published in a newspaper and would probably reflect the general public opinion at this time, because the newspaper would not want to disagree with the public opinion. The public would not want to read the newspaper and believe it to be wrong. However, the newspaper may create the public opinion in the first place so it is hard to tell. The remaining two sources are also cartoons. Source D only loosely supports interpretation 2 because it shows poor people queuing up for government relief. However, these people will be getting food from the government so it is more of a neutral source than an anti-Roosevelt source. Source G is also a source that should not be relied on too heavily to promote the anti-Roosevelt interpretation. It does not highlight any of the points that the interpretation makes, about the economical side, or World War Two. The only thing it touches upon is that Roosevelt had too much power. However, the source is reliable, as it is a published cartoon so it is not to be completely disregarded. Having surveyed and analyzed each of the sources in turn, I think that there are more reliable and accurate sources that contribute to interpretation 1 than interpretation 2. The sources that support interpretation one have facts to support their arguments, and are written or drawn by generally non-biased authors or artists, and their arguments convince me more than the arguments for interpretation 2 do. However this isn't to say that interpretation 2 is wrong in its entirety. I do agree with it when it says that the Second World War helped to solve America's economic problems. However, opinion one is the one I agree with more and there are more sources to support this than interpretation 2. ...read more.

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