Ⅰ. Geography by yaosaigeng


									             Ⅰ. Geography
• 1).The Geographical Characteristics of the United
•    Vast area: The United States is bigger in area
  than the whole of Europe, spreading from the
  Pacific coast to the Atlantic coast. Diversity of
  land features: The United States comprehends land
  features like forest, desert, swamp, mountains,
  plains and one of the world’s largest river systems.
• 2).The Mississippi River
•    The Mississippi River, often called the
  “Father of Waters”, is the most important
  and largest river in America. It flows for
  6,400 kilometers.
3) The Growth of the Union Since Its
      Foundation in the 1780s
• At the time of its foundation, the original
  Union consisted of thirteen states along the
  eastern seaboard. As settlement spread
  westwards and stable population capable of
  self-government developed new areas, so new
  states were allowed to join the Union. Arizona
  in 1912 was the forty-eight continental state
  joining the Union. In 1959, separate territories
  of Hawaii and Alaska joined the Union. Thus
  the list of fifty states of the United States was
          4). New England
• New England refers to the northeastern six
  states: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont,
  Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode
  Island, a area running from the Canadian
  shore to New York. This area resembles old
  England in many ways. Some of the earliest
  settlement in America history was in this
  area. In general, this part of the country is
  small-scale, long established and urban.
          5). New York City
• It is the commercial capital of the United
  States. It is at the southernmost tip of the
  New York State. It is composed of five
  boroughs: Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx,
  Richmond, and Queen’s, with Manhattan
  Island as its center. It is well known for
  such places as Wall Street, the Empire
  State Building, Harlem and Central Park.
        6). Manhattan Island
• It is at southeast part of New York City. It
  is the centre of the city and includes things
  that are famous to the world: Wall Street,
  Fifth Avenue, Broadway, the Empire State
  Building. Rockefeller Centre, the United
  Nation’s Building, Central Park, Harlem
  and so on.
           7). The South
• It refers to the area across the Potomac
  River and southwards down the Atlantic
  coast. This was slave-owning area before
  the Civil War and mainly produced tobacco
  and cotton. Economically these states are
  notoriously backward, but more recently
  there has been an industrial development,
  helped by federal plans and hydroelectric
         9). The Middle West
• It describes the northeastern part of the
  central plain, or the northeastern quarter of
  the United States except for the states close
  to the Atlantic. In terms of political
  geography, it refers to these states: Illinois,
  Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin and Ohio
  and so on. First developed for farming,
  these states include huge, sparsely
  populated open spaces. Chicago and
  Detroit are two of the big industrial cities
  in this area.
  10). The search for the California
• California is blessed with attractive scenery
  and mild climate. It has the fertile land for the
  growing of oranges and grapes. And more
  important still are the electronics industry,
  aero plane factories, defense plants of many
  kinds, and a whole new industrial complex in
  this area. Therefore, California is the
  Promised Land by many people to fulfill their
  8). The Appalachian Mountains
• The range of the Appalachian Mountains
  runs behind and through the eastern states,
  beginning for south in Georgia and
  continuing northwards to Vermont and
  Canada. Sections of the range have different
  names, but rounded hills and forests are the
  main feature. The mountains place a barrier
  to early westward movement in American
• 11). Great Basin
• Great Basin refers to the part between the
  Colorado and Columbia Plateaus.
• 12). Great Central Plain
• Great Central Plain refers to the landmass between
  the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachians.
• 13). Great Plain
• Great Plain refers to the western part of the central
• 14). The Five Great Lakes
• The Five Great Lakes refers to Lake Michigan,
  Superior, Erie, Huron and Ontario.
            Ⅱ. History
• 1). He was a 15th century mariner from Italy
  believed that he could reach the Far East by
  sailing west from Europe. 2). In 1492, he
  persuaded the king and queen of Spain to finance
  his voyage to the East. 3). Instead of reaching
  Asia, he landed on one of the Bahama Island in
  the Caribbean Sea and explore most of the
  Caribbean area. 4). After his discovery, Europeans
  began to explore and colonize the New World.
  2. The Europeans’ colonization of
          the New World.
• 1). After Columbia’s discovery, European
  countries established settlements in the New
  World to claim as much territory as possible.
  2). Spanish priests wanted to convert the
  indigenous inhabitants of the Americas to
  Christianity. 3). European religious and
  political dissenters needed a refuge from
  persecution in their homelands. 4). Some
  individuals thirsted for adventure.
              3. The Pilgrims
• 1). In England, there had been a group of people
  called Puritans who had broken away from the
  Church of England and formed their own churches in
  order to purify the Church of England. Later they
  fled to Holland to escape the persecution in their
  native land. 2) Several years passed when they were
  again threatened by religious suppression, they
  thought of moving, and this time to America. 3).
  They began to call themselves Pilgrims because of
  their wanderings in search of religious freedom. 4).
  In 1620, they crossed the Atlantic in the ship
  Mayflower and settled at Plymouth, Massachusetts.
                4. Mayflower
• 1). It is the name of a ship first bringing the
  Pilgrims to New England. 2). It started in
  September of 1620 carrying 102 passengers. 3). It
  landed out of plan in Provincetown Harbor,
  Massachusetts. 4). It was on this ship that the first
  governor was chosen and the historic Mayflower
  Compact was signed. 5). It finally anchored in
  Plymouth Harbor where the Pilgrims had a
  permanent settlement.
       5. Mayflower Compact
• 1). In order to survive, the Pilgrims on the
  Mayflower needed a means of establishing
  and enforcing proper rules of conduct. Also
  they wanted to protect themselves from
  rebels within their own ranks, so they
  signed the Mayflower Compact. 2). It was
  the first formal agreement for self-
  government in America. 3) It was signed on
  the Mayflower, choosing the first governor.
             6. Boston Tea Party
• 1). In the years following the French and Indian
  War, British government enforced several acts,
  which were bitterly opposed by colonists. 2). In
  order to ease tensions, British government removed
  all the new taxes except that on tea. 3) In 1773, a
  group of patriots responded to the tea tax by staging
  the Boston Tea Party: Disguised as Indians, they
  boarded British merchant ships and tossed 342
  crates of tea into Boston harbor. 4). British
  parliament then passed the Intolerable Acts, and in
  response to this the First Continental Congress was
  held in September 1774.
7. The First Continental Congress
• 1). In response to the Intolerable Acts passed
  by British parliament, the First Continental
  Congress met in Philadelphia in September
  1774. 2). This was a meeting of colonial
  leaders opposed to what they perceived to be
  British oppression in the colonies. They
  urged Americans to disobey the Intolerable
  Acts and to boycott British trade. 3). After
  this, colonists began to organized militias and
  to collect and store weapons and ammunition.
   8). The Second Continental Congress
• 1). After the first shot of the American War of
  Independence was fired at Lexington on April
  19,1775, the Second Continental Congress met in
  Philadelphia in May 1775. 2). It began to assume the
  functions of a national government. It founded a
  Continental Army and Navy under the command of
  George Washington, and began to print paper money
  and opened diplomatic relations with foreign powers.
  It adopted on July 4,1776 the Declarations of
  Independence, which was drafted by Thomas
 9. The Declaration of Independence
• 1). It held that men have a natural right to
  “life, liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”;
  that government can rule only with “the
  consent of the governor”; that any
  government may be dissolved when it fails to
  protect the rights of the people. 2). This
  theory of politics came from the British
  philosopher John Locke. And it is central to
  the Anglo-Saxon political tradition.
10. The American War of Independence
• 1). After British parliament passed the Intolerable Acts,
  tensions were again created between colonists and
  British government. 2). On April 19,1775, the first shot
  was fired at Lexington and the American War of
  Independence began. 3). In May 1775, the Second
  Continental Congress met in Philadelphia and began to
  assume the functions of a national government. It
  founded a Continental Army and Navy under the
  command of George Washington and declared
  independence on July 4,1776. 4). In 1781, British
  General Cornwallis surrendered at York-town, Virginia
  and soon British government asked for peace. 5). The
  Treaty of Paris, signed in September 1783, recognized
  the independence of the United States.
  11. The Constitutional Convention
• 1). Since 1781, the 13 states had been
  governed by the Articles of Confederation,
  which set up a very weak central government.
  2). In May 1787, the Constitutional
  Convention met in Philadelphia with
  instructions to revise the Articles of
  Confederation. 3). Three of the delegates,
  George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and
  James Madison drafted a new and more
  workable Constitution. 4). After much debate,
  the Constitution was accepted in 1788.
       12. George Washington
• 1). He was a Virginia planter and veteran of
  the French and Indian War. 2). In 1775, he
  became the commander of the Continental
  Army in the American War of
  Independence. 3). He was one of the three
  delegates who drafted the Constitution in
  the Constitutional Convention in 1787. 4).
  He was the first president of the United
  States and governed in a Federalist style. He
  put down the “Whiskey Rebellion” during
  his administration.
 13. The Alien and Sedition Acts
• 1). During John Adam’s administration, the US was
  involved in an undeclared naval war with France. In
  an atmosphere of war hysteria, the Congress passed
  the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798. 2). These
  measures permitted the deportation or arrest of
  “ dangerous” aliens, and prescribed fines or
  imprisonment for publishing attacks on the
  government. 3). Ten Republican editors were
  convicted under these acts. 4). The repression
  occurred under the Alien and Sedition Acts ended in
  1801 with Thomas Jefferson becoming the president.
        14. Thomas Jefferson
• 1). He was a Virginia lawyer and author of
  the Declaration of Independence. 2). He
  spoke against the operation of the Alien and
  Sedition Acts and ended the repression
  under these acts in 1801, when he was
  elected president. 3). As a Republican
  president, he exercised his power
  vigorously. He purchased Louisiana
  territory from France in 1803.
     15. The Industrial Revolution in
• 1). After the War of 1812, the United States
  enjoyed a period of rapid economic expansion.
  The Industrial Revolution had reached
  America. 2). A national network of roads and
  canals was built, and the first steam railroad
  opened in Baltimore in 1830. 3). There were
  textile mills in New England; iron foundries
  in Pennsylvania. And by the 1850s, factories
  were producing various goods.
          16. Andrew Jackson
• 1). He was the first man born into a poor
  family and born in the west to be elected
  president in 1828. 2). He and his democratic
  party promoted popular democracy and
  appealed to the humble members of society.
  He rewarded inexperienced but loyal
  supporters with government jobs. 3). He
  broke the power of the Bank of the United
  States. 4). He made land available to
  western settlers by forcing Indian tribes to
  move west of the Mississippi.
         17. Monroe Doctrine
• President Monroe put it forward in 1823.
  Main points: the European countries ought
  not to start any new colonies in North or
  South America, not to interfere with the
  newly-established South American
  republics, and the United States ought not to
  interfere in the affairs of European countries.
  Monroe doctrine was an important symbol
  of American expansionism.
     18. The American Civil War
• 1) In 19th- century America, the issue of slavery
  had become the central point of contention in
  politics, economics and cultural life.2). After
  Lincoln won the election in 1861,11 Southern and
  border states seceded from the Union and formed
  the Confederate States of America. The American
  Civil War began. 3). Lincoln issued the
  Emancipation Proclamation on January 1,1863.
  Southern General Lee surrendered to General Grant
  in April 1865 and all other Confederate forces soon
  surrendered. Lincoln was assassinated on April
• 4). The Civil War was the most traumatic
  episode in American history. It devastated
  the South and subjected that region to
  military occupation. America lost more
  soldiers in this war than in any other. 5).
  The war resolved two fundamental
  questions. It put an end of slavery, which
  was legally abolished by the 13th
  Amendment to the Constitution in 1865. It
  also assured the integrity of the United
  States as an indivisible nation.
        19. The Ku Klux Klan
• 1). After the Civil War, some Southern
  whites formed the Ku Klux Klan. 2). It was
  a violent secret society that hoped to protect
  white interests and advantages by
  terrorizing blacks and preventing them from
  making social advances. 3). By 1872, the
  federal government had suppressed the Klan,
  but it revived several times in later history.
  20. The Situation of Blacks After the
               Civil War
• 1). Though the 13th Amendment to the Constitution in
  1865 had legally abolished slavery, it did not ensure
  equality in fact for former slaves. 2). Southern blacks
  were “second-class citizens”. They were not allowed to
  vote, were threatened by the Ku Klux Klan, and their
  freedom was restricted by the black codes. 3). Toward
  the end of the 19th century, the segregation and
  oppression of blacks grew far more rigid: Southern
  laws enforced strict segregation in many public places;
  most blacks had to continue to work as tenant farmers.
  4). Although blacks were legally free, they lived and
  were treated very much like slaves.
          21. Reconstruction
• 1). After the Civil War, the US Congress
  put forward the program of Reconstruction,
  or reform, of the Southern states. 2). The
  program was bitterly opposed by most
  Southern whites. 3). It ended in 1877, when
  new constitutions had been ratified in all
  Southern states and all federal troops were
  withdrawn from the south.
  22. The Westward Movement
• 1). The Westward Movement began
  following the end of the Civil War.2).
  Miners searching gold and silver went to the
  Rocky Mountain region. Farmers settled in
  Minnesota and the Dakotas. Cowboys
  managed cattle on the plains of Texas and
  other western states. 3). As settlers kept
  moving west, they fought with Indians and
  forced them from their land.
              23. Cowboys
• 1). During the Westward Movement,
  cowboys, or hired horsemen managed cattle
  on the plains of Texas and other western
  states. 2). Most of them were former
  Southern soldiers or former slaves. 3). They
  were America’s proletarian heroes, and
  were not so violent as movies later
  represented them to be. 4). They had
  become most celebrated and romanticized
  figures in American culture.
       24. The Great Depression
• 1). On October 24, 1929----“Black Thursday”----a
  wave of panic selling of stocks swept the New York
  Stock Exchange. Share and other security prices
  collapsed.2) By 1932, thousands of banks and
  businesses had failed. Industrial production was cut
  in half. Farm income had fallen by more than half.
  Wages had decreased 60 percent. New investment
  was down 90 percent. As a result one out of every
  four workers was unemployed. 3). Franklin D.
  Roosevelt won the 1932 election and carried out the
  New Deal to improve the economy. 4) Full recovery
  from the Depression was brought about by the
  defense buildup prior to America’s entering the WW
           25. The New Deal
• 1). To deal with the Depression, President
  Franklin Roosevelt rushed through Congress a
  great number of laws within the historic
  “ Hundred Days”. 2). Some of the famous ones in
  this New Deal program were the WPA, AAA and
  the Social Security Act. 3). The New Deal
  program did not end the Depression, but the
  economy improved as a result of this program of
  government intervention.
         Ⅲ. Politics and Government
• 1. Political Parties in the United States
• 1). Soon after the Union was established, political
  parties developed. The first two political parties in
  American history were the Federalists and the
  Republicans. 2). At present, two parties, Democrats
  and Republicans, dominate the political scene. 3).
  The two parties are very complex in their aims and
  in their basis of popular support. But in the long run,
  they do provide means of keeping government close
  to the people.
       2. Separation of Powers
• Influenced by Montesquieu’s theory of
  division of powers, the US Constitution
  ruled that political structures should share
  out political power between legislative,
  executive and judicial authorities, and that
  these authorities should exercise checks
  against each other.
  3. Government at Various Levels
• 1). The Federal government has three branches----
  executive (the President), legislature( Congress) and
  judicial. The three elements are checked and
  balanced by one another. 2).In each state government,
  power is also divided among three agencies---
  legislature (usually the two houses, elected for fixed
  terms), executive (the governor) and judges of the
  State Supreme Court. 3). Each state is divided into
  countries, which have their own powers. 4). Within
  the countries the towns have their own local
  governments, mainly as cities. These city
  governments, with elected mayor, council and judges,
  reproduce the state pattern on a smaller scale.
 4. The Role of the US Congress

• 1). It is the law-making body. 2). No federal
  taxes can be collected or money spent
  without the approval of both Houses. 3) If
  the President refuses to sign the laws, his
  veto can be over-ridden by a two-thirds
  majority in both House. 4) All treaties and
  all the President’s appointments to high
  offices, are subject to the Senate’s approval.
    5. Elections for the Two Houses
• 1). Elections for both Houses are held in November
  each even-numbered year. 2). The whole House of
  Representatives is elected to serve for only two years.
  Each state has one seat in the House of
  Representatives for every 1/435 share that it has of
  the Whole US population. 3). Senators are elected in
  rotation for six years with each state’s two senators
  elected at separate elections. 4). If a senator or
  representative dies or resigns, a special election is
  held to fill his place for the remainder of this term.
              6. Federalism
• 1). The states give up their rights to conduct
  separate relations with each other and with
  the outside world, but each state kept the
  basic powers of government for itself within
  its own territory. 2). The Federal
  government should have only the powers,
  which are necessary for providing for the
  matters, which are of common interest to
  them all.
  7. The US Federal Constitution
• 1). It is the supreme law in the United States, and is
  the main expression of the American ideal. 2). It is a
  short document, which embodies laws and principles
  for the form of the US government. Some of the
  most famous articles in this Constitution are the First,
  the Second, the third and the Fifth. And the first ten
  amendments----the Bill of Rights----are very
  important. 3). Some of it is vague and uncertain in
  meaning, and therefore involves much difficulty in
  interpretation. 4) It is the oldest written constitution
  in the world and has inspired dozens of other
  countries seeking political reform.
                  Ⅳ. Education
• 1. Day Care Centers
• 1). They provide care for preschool children of
  working mothers who need a place to leave their
  children all day, five days a week. 2). Free, high-
  quality day care is essential for women if they are to
  participate fully in society. 3). The need for more day
  care centers is acute because about 30 percent of
  mothers with children under age six are in the labor
  force and the number of working mothers with
  preschool children is still increasing.
             2. Nursery Schools
• 1). Nursery schools accept children from three to
  five years old for half-day sessions ranging from
  twice a week to five days a week. 2). The typical
  nursery school classroom is equipped much like
  a kindergarten, plus an outdoor playground. 3).
  A youngster who has no playmates his age living
  nearby may greatly benefit from attending
  nursery school. 4). Nursery schools usually
  charge tuition, though some are subsidized and
  some offer scholarship.
               3. Kindergarten
• 1). In most area, free public education begins
  with kindergarten classes for five-year-olds. 2)
  Through these half-day sessions, the child
  becomes accustomed to being separate from
  Mommy, playing and sharing with other children,
  and following the directions of a teacher. 3). He
  is also introduced to skills and information that
  will help him later with academic work. 4). This
  early childhood education is very beneficial to
            4. Grammar School
• 1). In the United States, classes of students are
  divided into twelve academic levels called
  grades. 2). The first academic institution that a
  child attends is called grammar school/ 3). In
  some school systems, it includes grades one
  through eight and in other school systems, one
  through six. 4). Grammar schools teach reading ,
  arithmetic, language and some other subjects.
           5. Higher Education
• 1). It refers to American education on the
  college level. 2). American higher education is
  provide by more than 3,000 institutions. 3).
  Some are supported privately and some by local
  or state governments. Most are coeducational.
  Some are called colleges, and others are
  universities. 4). After WW Ⅱ, colleges and
  universities have expanded tremendously. This
  huge expansion reflects the trend toward
  democratizing higher education.
  Ⅴ. Race and Ethnic Groups
• 1. The Melting Pot
• 1). This phrase comes from the play The Melting
  Pot. 2) It holds that America is the great Melting
  Pot where all the races of Europe are melting and
  re-forming. 3). The US is a heterogeneous society
  where diverse races and cultures are blended. 4).
  Recently, some people think America should be
  called “ a salad bowl”.
• 2 . WASP
• It stands for the White Anglo-Saxon
  Protestant. It is the dominant group in the
  US controlling economic assets and
  political power.
          3. Slavery in the US
• 1). It started in mid-seventeenth century. 2).
  The demand for cheap labor led to a massive
  slave trade. 3). The myth of racial inferiority
  of blacks was propagated as a justification for
  their continued subjugation. 4). The institution
  of slavery was finally ended by the Civil War,
  Lincoln’s emancipation of slaves in 1863. and
  the thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution
  in 1865.
       4. Segregation Laws
• 1). After the abolition of slavery wholesale
  discrimination was practiced against black
  Americans. 2). Many states passes
  segregation laws to keep the races apart in
  school, housing, restaurants, and other
  public facilities. 3) Segregation laws
  continued to be enforced in Southern States
  until the 1950s.
     5. Martin Luther King, Jr.
• 1). He was a black leader of the civil rights
  movement in the 1950s and the 1960s. 2). He
  attained national prominence by advocating a
  policy of non-violent resistance to segregation.
  3). In 1964, he was awarded the Nobel Peace
  Prize. 4). In 1968 he was assassinated by a
  white man. The assassination touched off a
  coast-to-coast wave of the most violent
  protest and demonstrations against racial
  discrimination in the US.
     6. Montgomery Bus Boycott
• On December 1, 1955, when Mrs. Rosa Parks, an
  active member of the NAACP (the national
  association for the advancement of colored people),
  refused to give up her seat to a white man on a public
  bus in Montgomery, Alabama, she got arrested.
  Under the leadership of Martin Luther King, black
  people in Montgomery decided to organize a bus
  boycott for one day. With unflinching determination,
  the black people in Montgomery eventually forced
  the company to back down from its discriminatory
7. The Civil Right Act of 1964
• This Act outlawed discrimination on the
  basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national
  origin, not only in public accommodations
  but also in employment. It also authorized
  the government to withhold funds public
  agencies that discriminated on the basis of
  race, and it empowered the attorney general
  to guarantee voting rights and end school
     8. The Black Underclass
• 1). They live in the urban ghettos. 2). They
  consist of habitually unemployed or
  underemployed black people. 3). Many
  members are young and unskilled. 4). This
  “underclass” continues to persist and offers
  an explosive potential for the future.
          9. The Reservation
• 1). It was established by the US government
  for the Indians after the Civil War,
  segregation the Indians from the national
  life. 2). In 1871 Congress decided that no
  Indian tribe would ever be recognized ad an
  independent political entity again and made
  all Indians wards of the federal government,
  without any rights of citizenship. 3). Not
  until 1924 was the right of American
  citizenship extended to the original
  inhabitants of the land.
              10. Hispanics
• 1). It is a general name for Spanish-speaking
  population of the US. 2). The Hispanic population
  is a large, diverse and rapidly growing one. 3). It
  contains Chicanos, Puerto Ricans, Cubans and
  other people from various Spanish-speaking
  nations of Central and South America. 4). The
  Hispanic population is growing so rapidly because
  of three factors: relative youth; cultural reluctance
  to practice family planning; constant inflow of
  new immigrants mostly over the Mexican border.
• 5). The diverse groups within the Hispanic
  population share a common predicament as
  a primarily poor, Catholic, Spanish-
  speaking people in a predominantly affluent,
  Protestant, English-speaking country. 6).
  Most Hispanics have relatively low levels
  of education and income and they are an
  overwhelmingly urban population.
                  11. Chicanos
• 1). They are Mexican Americans. 2). They have
  been regarded as aliens on American soil since the
  mid-19th century. 3). It is only in recent years that
  the Chicanos have come to be generally recognized
  as a genuinely American minority. 4). They are
  regarded as sojourners in the US who can “go back
  home” if they are not satisfied. 5). Urban Chicanos
  are concentrated in ethnic neighborhoods. 6). The
  Chicano population is a relatively poor one with
  relatively low educational achievement. 7).
  Chicano farm workers have experienced severe
  economic exploitation. 8). Chicano leaders are
  demanding entry into mainstream America without
  assimilation into the “Anglo” culture.
        12. The Chinatowns
• 1). Chinese Americans, because of their own
  choice and discrimination, have kept to their own
  urban communities----the Chinatowns. 2). Despite
  the thriving appearance, the Chinatowns contain
  an array of social problems----most notably
  overcrowding and extensive poverty. 3). The
  Chinese have retained a great deal of cultural
  heritage, including language, cuisine and
          13. Jewish American
• 1). Three percent of all Americans are Jews,
  most of them originally from Eastern Europe,
  including Russia. 2). They tended to be
  concentrated in the eastern area, particularly
  New York. 3). Their political status is rather
  similar to the Catholics, and it is still
  considered unlikely for a Jew to be elected
  President. 4). Many of them have been
  successful in seeking economic prosperity in
  American condition. 5). They are
  predominantly liberal, and inclined to be
  expressed in politics through the Democratic

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