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Great Britain And The American Colonies

836 words - 3 pages

How could two lands that share a common language, a common ancestry, and a common religious background be so very different from each other? Great Britain and the American Colonies began with a shared heritage, but, over time, developed ideologies as widely apart as their two lands were geographically apart. England was island of limitation and the Colonies was a land of endless possibility. The difference between these two lands contrabret in the differences in their attitudes and actions in the economic, political and social areas particularly illustrate this truth.
Britain and the Colonies held vastly different attitudes toward economics in the 1750s. As an island, England developed with a definite awareness of limitations. The American Colonies, in contrast, were perched on the edge of what seemed to be a boundless land overflowing with endless resources. Partly because of these geographic differences, England developed a restrictive view towards economics that greatly differed from the views of her more expansively inclined Colonies. One particular example was in the British view that work must be rationed because, “... the total amount of work for which society could pay was strictly limited...” (Morgan 603) The limitations did not stop there, however. Laws were passed that made it illegal “for a man to practice more than one trade or one craft.” (Morgan 603) The Colonies, on the other hand, had so much work that work was not viewed as limited, but never ending. Whereas the British lands had been occupied and improved for more than a millennium, the Colonies were seeking to carve an entire civilization out of a rugged, untouched wilderness in little more than a century. The amount of available work was so vast, in fact, the South turned to slavery as a solution to their permanent labor shortage. (Schweikart 45) The economic differences of these two groups could perhaps have remained a minor point of contention, had not one of the groups had political power over the other.
It is seen in history that the Colonies major problem with the British was the taxing without a say, politics was another area of great difference between the two peoples. Again, geographic distance played a role in the development of those divergences. One primary difference was the American demand for free speech. In Great Britain, citizens had a say in their government, but their voices could be easily ignored or silenced by their king. The distance between the power of the monarchy and the streets of Boston or New York or Philadelphia lead...

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