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Intro

It has long been debated whether Theodore Roosevelt changed the Monroe Doctrine and the vision for the United States through the Roosevelt Corollary.  Many have drawn Roosevelt as an imperialist who claimed that the Anglo-Saxons of America were the best possible race and were meant to thus rule over the other races in such a way that they would teach them to be civilized.  Others contend that Roosevelt was a man who wished to protect the less developed countries from the other powers of the world so that they would be able to develop free from the corruption that had caused so many of the problems in Europe.1  In either case, the mission that he had laid forth in the Roosevelt Corollary, is the mission that Roosevelt expected the presidents who succeeded him to follow.  That expectation led Roosevelt to work hard to influence those presidents through direct advisory as well as through other channels. This question will become the focus of this inquiry module. Through exploration of primary sources, this inquiry module will answer the whether Roosevelt changed the United States mission to one of imperialism and whether or not he was then able to convince Wilson that his vision was the correct one to follow, causing Wilson to enter World War I.

 

1 Richard H. Collin, Theodore Roosevelt’s Caribbean The Panama Canal, the Monroe Doctrine, and the Latin American Context (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1990).