SAT Subject US History Practice Question 784: Answer and Explanation
45. In his futuristic novel, Looking Backward 2000-1887, published in 1888, Edward Bellamy
A. described a world in which the United States exercised unrivaled naval power.
B. scolded the South for enacting Jim Crow laws and tolerating the lynching of African Americans.
C. imagined a world in which socialism and harmony replaced the antagonisms of the Gilded Age.
D. discussed the potential benefits of having a single tax on unimproved lands.
E. warned readers about the dangers of totalitarian regimes.
Correct Answer: C
Bellamy's utopian novel, which described the benefits of socialism, inspired over 100 Bellamy Clubs devoted to implementing Bellamy's ideas. Questions of naval power (A) or race (B) were not included in the novel. Others addressed these issues in the late 19th century. Imperialists, such as Alfred T. Mahan, supported an expansionistic foreign policy, while several African American writers and activists, notably Ida B. Wells, Booker T. Washington, and W. E. B. DuBois, addressed issues of race in America around the turn of the 20th century. It was Henry George in Progress and Poverty in 1879, who proposed a single tax on unimproved land (D) to ensure that land be used for the common good instead of for speculation. Totalitarian regimes (E) are a 20th-century phenomenon, the dangers of which are the subject of anti-utopian novels such as George Orwell's 1984, written in 1948.