Nationalism: French and Indian War Assignment

Nationalism: French and Indian War Assignment Words: 482

FRQ-Nationalism Nationalism is divine loyalty and devotion to the interests and cultures of one nation. The French and Indian War was a colonial extension of The Seven Years War and was fought between the British and the French, to whom, however, had an advantage due to the fact that the American Indians were allied with them. The two countries fought for control of the Ohio Valley and Canada.

The French and Indian War was a nationalizing experience for colonial Americans due to the fact that they all supported one cause: to build one independent country, despite the different cultures and ideas, uplifted their self-esteem, and brought them together as fellow Americans to discover the ideals they shared in common. The British and French in America were in war to each increase their land holdings. The French, called “runners of the wood,” wanted to expand their territories with respect to fur-trading and other French economic interests.

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The Indians migrated around so much and envied others permanent settlements, so they therefore wanted land to call their own. The British, like both the French and Indians, wanted one land. French, British, and Indians were fighting against each other in regard to the common cause of land holding. The French and Indian War was a nationalizing experience due to the fact that it bolstered colonial self-esteem, while shattering the myth of British invincibility.

Friction had developed over the course of the war between British officers and colonial men. The haughty British would not recognize any American militia men above the rank of captain. For example, General Wolfe referred to the colonial militia as “in general the dirtiest, most contemptible, cowardly dogs that you can conceive. ” The confident, energetic Americans believed to be the cutting edge of British civilization and they felt that they deserved credit rather than contempt for securing a New World empire.

During the French and Indian War unity received some encouragement. Soldiers and statesmen from widely separated colonies met around campfires and council tables and were surprised by what they found. The men discovered that they were all Americans devoted to common ideals and a common language. This proposition helped them to overcome some of the jealousy and suspicion they may have had. Although they endured a long, rugged road ahead of them, the barriers of disunity began to melt away.

The common ideals of the French, British, and Indians proved to be a nationalizing experience for colonial Americans. The soldiers had to overcome their jealousy of each other in order to see what was really important in the cause of the war, which was amount of land holdings. As one can see, The French and Indian War was very much so a nationalizing experience due to the common cause, American boost of self-esteem, and help of the unifying campfires and council tables.

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