American Interests in the Panama Canal Analytical Essay by Thukydides

A look at the history of American interests in the Panama Canal.
# 151910 | 2,604 words | 9 sources | MLA | 2011 | UA

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This paper analyzes the history of the Panama Canal and the implications of its construction and ownership by the USA. First, the paper discusses the Roosevelt Administration's interests in constructing the canal. It also touches on the history of the plan to build a canal in this location. Next, the paper describes other attempts to construct the Panama canal. It focuses on a Scottish attempt, a French enterprise and then highlights the American involvement in the project. The paper concludes by stating that the choice of Panama for the location of American-run interoceanic canal was rather logical, and the implementation of this plan had the great importance for the further history of Panama in the 20th century.


General Body

From the Paper:

"Unfortunately, this so-called 'Darien scheme', which consisted of brief attempt at establishing a settlement a two additional failed expeditions in 1698-1699 was doomed to failure from the very outset: not only were the merchants that provided initial capital for this venture unable to sustain long-term expenses4, but also the harsh natural conditions of the place led to the virtual epidemic among the settlers, and in the end this colonial adventure turned out to be a manifest failure. For the next century, there were no comparable ambitious projects for exploiting the narrow Isthmus of Panama in interoceanic trade.
"The first scientifically grounded proposal for the construction of the Canal that was to unite two oceans was expounded by famous scientist and traveler Alexander Humboldt5. From his travels in Central America, he came to believe that it was possible to start the construction of permanent waterway in nine locations, including Panama, though he evidently thought that the territory of Nicaragua was more suitable for such an endeavor6. Humboldt's judgment on the feasibility of interoceanic canal project marked the beginning of 'Panama fever' that was to reach its peak in the second half of the nineteenth century. "

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Ameringer, Charles. "The Panama Lobby of Philippe Bunau-Varilla and William Nelson Cromwell". American Historical Review 68, no. 2 (1963): 346-363.
  • Connel-Smith, Gordon. The United States and Latin America: An Historical Analysis of Inter-American Relations. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann Educational, 1974.
  • Connif, Michael. Panama and the United States: the Forced Alliance. Athens, GE: University of Georgia Press, 2001.
  • Hill, Howard. Roosevelt and the Caribbean. 1927. La Vergne, TN: Lightning Source, 2008.
  • Loizillon, Gabriel. The Bunau-Varilla Brothers and the Panama Canal., 2008.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

American Interests in the Panama Canal (2012, October 23) Retrieved March 04, 2024, from

MLA Format

"American Interests in the Panama Canal" 23 October 2012. Web. 04 March. 2024. <>