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Yellow Journalism, Imperialism and The Spanish American War


During the Cuban Revolution of the late 19th Century, atrocities committed upon the Cubans by the Spanish were massively hyped and sensationalized in the U.S. newspapers, a practice known as Yellow Journalism.” The two kingpins of the press at the time were William R. Hearst (publisher of the New York Journal) and Joseph Pulitzer (publisher of the New York World). In order to grow their circulations (i.e. sell more newspapers), both men were willing to go so far as to fabricate a war.


Your are presented with discovering how Hearst and Pulitzer used Yellow Journalism to such an extent as to create a war between the United States and Spain. In doing so, you will learn that creating an “American Empire” was actually the goal of some in our government.


You will answer each question by reading from the link/s provided for each. If you feel that you need further information for understanding, use a metasearch such as Dogpile or Unabot, or a search engine/directory such as Google or Bing. Be sure to answer each in complete and grammatically correct sentences.

  1. Explain the origins and purpose of the Yellow Kid.
  2. Explain what is meant by Imperialism.
  3. Describe the part Manifest Destiny played in America’s empire building of the late 19th Century.
  4. Describe how the idea of Social Darwinism aided in America’s empire building of the late 19th Century.
  5. Explain the role that Pan-Americanism played in America’s empire building of the late 19th Century.
  6. Describe the five things that Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan said the U.S. needed to do in order to become a world power, in his book, The Influence of Sea Power Upon History.
  7. Contrast the actual reason for the explosion of the U.S.S. Maine in Havana, Cuba to the fabricated reason given by U.S. Newspapers in 1898.
  8. Following the Declaration of War on Spain on April 25th, 1898, the U.S. involved itself in the Filipino battle for independence – explain why.
  9. Explain how this famous painting of The Rough Riders charging up San Juan Hill in Cuba is incorrect.
  10. Describe the four territorial results of the Treaty of Paris.
  11. Explain what has come to be known as “Seward’s Folly.”
  12. Contrast the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine.

* Due by the end of the period for points *


The information that you discover will be essential for your success on the next exam (re: Imperialism).