Capitalism, North American Economy 1880-1950, Mexican Revolution - Free Essay in Economic History

Published: 2019-10-21
Capitalism, North American Economy 1880-1950, Mexican Revolution - Free Essay in Economic History
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  History Capitalism Economics
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1325 words
12 min read

Capitalism is an economic system where there is less regulation by the government on the way owners of factors of production should use them in their daily life. Capitalism has greatly shaped the development of businesses in America, and this has affected different groups in various ways. The experiences on the effects of capitalism in America has been different and depend on the class, sex, nationality as well as race of an individual. The aim of this research paper is to discuss the different experiences that various groups have witnessed as a result of the development of capitalistic businesses in America. Some of the experiences have been good, and many people have benefited from the same but at the same time, some have suffered as a result of capitalistic business organizations.

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First, capitalism shaped the relations between Mexico and the United States even before the government of the two states intervened. When the border between the two states was opened, the migration between the two states increased in a great way because of the wage differential. The wages in the United States were far much better than the wages in Mexico and this meant that many people benefited by moving to the United States so that they would get better pay for their labor (Thelen, 1999). The problem with this is that men stayed far away from their families as they were in another country. This was not the culture that existed in Mexico before. The good thing is that the infrastructure between the two countries was greatly developed even by private companies including the communication systems. People would make calls to the relatives from the United States, and this made living better (Grant, & Watkins, 1993). The good wages that people received in the United States helped improve their living standards.

The capitalism in America also led to the development of classes in the society and a few individuals, especially from the United States controlled the major resources in the North American countries. With time, Mexico realized that many of the companies in their country were controlled by people and companies from the United States, and this included the oil and banking industry. Many people in Mexico had sold their land as a result of the capitalist approach where the business individuals would buy land that had important resources that they would later exploit (Watkins, 1993). This means that the people in Mexico became servants of the foreigners in their own countries where they had to work in the companies that were owned by the Americans. This created some tension that is associated with the class system that had developed because of the capitalistic approach to businesses (Kopinak, 1997).

The individuals from Mexico in the United States received better pay in the foreign country, but on the other hand, they were regarded as slaves. The labor that was received in the US was used in the production of agricultural products which boosted the US economy. This shows that there was a mutual benefit between US and Mexico because the laborers received better pay while production in the US was boosted. However, the production activities in Mexico reduced and this meant higher prices for the agricultural products in Mexico (OMMER, 1981).

The role of women in the society changed as a result of the capitalistic nature of businesses in the Latin America. While the women were passive in decision and policy making activities, the women in Mexico were left to take care of children, and this changed their roles in the society. They became more powerful when the United States and Mexico were about to go to war as a result of the actions by the Mexican government of privatizing various business organizations that were mainly owned by US government as well as US citizens (Lazonick, 2002). The women groups in the two countries worked to change the decisions by the leaders in their countries. In the United States, the women groups worked together to convince the public that the imminent war was not necessary and would adversely affect their lives. This is why the US Congress agreed to the idea that the imminent war was not popular in the society, and the US had no reason to start fighting with Mexico. This experiences in this situation is that the women in the two countries were becoming more powerful, and governments had started to listen to their opinion (Chandler, 1995).

The economic system also was characterized by great levels of competition between the various stakeholders in the economy. The merchants, laborers, as well as various nations. An example is the merchants in the fishing industry where in places like Canada, the regulations were eased and this led to the increased number of merchants doing the business. The effects were that there was a diminishing return on capital as well as labor. The merchants had to be careful in the way they invested their capital since there were chances that losses were incurred. The profits decreased significantly as a result of this level of competition. As the US started making bilateral trade agreements with specific countries, the effects were that countries competed to make deals with the United States so that they were not locked out of the largest market in the region. The rest of North American countries felt that specific countries were betraying them but later realized that they were also better off making trade deals with the United States. This kind of rivalry experienced by the North American countries can mainly be explained in terms of the capitalistic behavior of various countries and investors (Threlkald, 2014).

Based on the analysis so far, it is evident that the capital from the United States had mixed experiences with the communities and individuals in the foreign countries. Some of the people benefited while some suffered as a result. An example is the effects of capital to Mexico where many people sold their land and became servants in their own country. In Canada, increased merchants meant that the competition made various businesses less profitable (Salvucci, 2010). However, locals benefited from employment opportunities that were created directly and indirectly by capital from the United States. The locals also benefited from the cheap products that were availed to them by the traders.

In conclusion, capitalism businesses had various different effects to the different culture. Some people benefited from the capitalism businesses while others did not benefit in a great way. It is evident that the businesses from the United States benefited more from the businesses that they set up. Regardless of this, it can be pointed out that there was a generally positive effect on the various groups in North America that witnessed the growth of capitalism in the region (WRIGHT, 2002).


Chandler Jr., A. D. (1995). The railroads: The first modern business enterprises, 1850s1860s. Historical Perspectives on the American Economy, 81-109. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139174244.017

Grant, H. M., & Watkins, M. H. (1993). Economic Factors in Canadian History: Canadian economic history: Classic and contemporary approaches; a selection of essays. Ottawa: Carleton Univ. Press [u.a]

Kopinak, K. M. (1997). Desert capitalism: What are the maquiladoras? Montreal: Black Rose.

Lazonick, W. (2002). The coming of modern Industrial Corporation. In American corporate economy: Critical perspectives on business and management. London: Routledge.

OMMER, R. E. (1981). All the Fish of the Post": Resource Property Rights and Development in a Nineteenth-Century Inshore Fishery. Journal of the History of the Atlantic Region, 102, 107-123. Retrieved from

Salvucci, R. J. (2010). Some Thoughts on the Economic History of Early Colonial Mexico. History Compass, 8(7), 626-635. doi:10.1111/j.1478-0542.2010.00690.x

Thelen, D. (1999). Mexico, the Latin North American Nation: A Conversation with Carlos Rico Ferrat. The Journal of American History, 86(2), 467. Doi: 10.2307/2567041

Threlkald M. (2014). Chapter 4. The Peace with Mexico Campaign. Pan American Women. doi:10.9783/9780812290028.117

Watkins, M. H. (1993). Myth and Measurement: The Innis Tradition in Economic History. In Canadian Economic History: Classic and Contemporary Approaches. Montreal: MQUP.

WRIGHT, G. (2003). Slavery and American Agricultural History. Agricultural History, 77(4), 527-552. doi:10.1525/ah.2003.77.4.527

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