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Introduction to Otto Brunner, “Conclusion,” Land and Lordship: Fundamental Questions of the Constitutional History of South-East Germany in the Middle Ages

Michael Kazin, The Populist Persuasion: An American History (New York: Basic Books, 1995). xLIII - SPRING/SUMMER 2010 - 1-12 COPYRIGHT © 2010 BY THE UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA. ALL RIGHTS OF REPRODUCTION IN ANY FORM RESERVED Party of the late 1880s and 1890s, which rallied behind William Jennings Bryan’s oft-cited “Cross of Gold” speech at the Democratic Convention in 1896 and his subsequent first run as presidential candidate, was in certain ways left-wing populism’s high-water mark. Bryan famously preached against an anti-inflationary gold standard and in favor of “bimetallism” (silver as well as gold), but what this meant in practical terms was an argument against the “idle” capital of urban Eastern bankers—the creditors of the time—and in favor of Western agrarian interests whose debts would be reduced by the inflation resulting from the abandonment of the gold standard. The most enduringly left-leaning or “progressive” contributions of this earlier phase of populism—the desire to protect small farmers, anti-trust and monetary reform, the surge in the power of labor unions under Samuel Gompers, new banking and stock market regulations after the crash of 1929, and Franklin D. Roosevelt’s federal works projects in response to the Great Depression of the 1930s—have been http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Genre: Forms of Discourse and Culture Duke University Press

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