This work investigates the use of wealth redistribution mechanisms in establishing and promoting meritocratic practices in early United States history. From the fifteenth to eighteenth century, the reward system used in exploration, colonization incentives, and land redistribution techniques are examined. During the eighteenth and nineteenth century, the effects of industrialization and education on social mobility are reviewed. Finally, the social and economic factors resulting in southern secession, particularly slavery, are examined. While the concept may be unpopular in modern society, wealth redistribution mechanisms were essential to cultivating merit-based social mobility and overall societal stability throughout the period covered.
Bobo, Micah D.
"Building a Meritocracy: The American Precedent for Wealth Redistribution,"
Undergraduate Economic Review:
1, Article 11.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.iwu.edu/uer/vol5/iss1/11