In sociolinguistics, a style is a set of linguistic variants with specific social meanings. In this context, social meanings can include personal attributes, or beliefs. Linguistic variation is at the heart of the concept of linguistic style—without variation there is no basis for distinguishing social meanings. Variation can occur syntactically and phonologically. Many approaches to interpreting and defining style incorporate the concepts of indexicality, indexical order, stance-taking, linguistic ideology. Note that a style is not a fixed attribute of a speaker. Rather, a speaker may use different styles depending on context. Additionally, speakers incorporate elements of multiple styles into their speech, either consciously or subconsciously, thereby creating a new style. William Labov first introduced the concept of style in the context of sociolinguistics in the 1960s, though he did not explicitly define the term. Labov studied individual linguistic variables, how they were associated with various social groups.
He summed up his ideas about style in five principles: "There are no single style speakers." Style-shifting occurs in all speakers to a different degree. "Styles can be ranged along a single dimension, measured by the amount of attention paid to speech." Style-shifting correlates with the amount of attention paid to speech. According to studies conducted by Labov, this was one of the single most important factors that determined whether or not an interlocutor would make a style-shift. "The vernacular, in which the minimum attention is paid to speech, provides the most systematic data for linguistic analysis." Labov characterized the vernacular as the original base mode of speech, learned at a young age, on which more complex styles build in life. This "basic" style has the least variation, provides the most general account of the style of a given group. "Any systematic observation of a speaker defines a formal context where more than the minimum attention is paid to speech." In other words formal face-to-face interviews limit a speaker’s use of their vernacular style.
An interlocutor’s vernacular style is most displayed if they do not perceive outside observers, are not paying immediate attention to their own speech. "Face-to-face interviews are the only means of obtaining the volume and quality of recorded speech, needed for quantitative analysis." Quantitative analysis requires the kind of data that must be obtained in a obvious, formal way. Labov’s work attempted to linked linguistic variants as a function of formality to specific social groups. In his study of /r/-variation in New York Department stores, he observed that those with a lower social class are less to pronounce postvocalic in words like fourth and floor, while those with a higher social class are more to pronounce postvocalic in their less careful speech. However, once forced to pay attention to language, they style-shift in a way indicative of their social aspirations; that is, those with a middle social class alter their pronunciation of /r/ in a way, indicative of a higher social standing, while those with a lower or higher social class more or less maintain their original pronunciation.
Penny Eckert's characterization of style as related to indexicality marked the beginning of a new approach to linguistic style. She builds on Michael Silverstein's notion of indexical order: the notion that linguistic variables index a social group, which by association leads to the indexing of certain traits stereotypically associated with members of that group. For example, in New York in the 1960s, a study by Labov showed that the clear articulation of postvocalic in words like "fourth" and "floor" indexed a higher class, whereas the absence of postvocalic indexed a lower class. However, the presence of lack of postvocalic can function as a higher order indexical that points indirectly to traits stereotypically associated with members of the upper or lower class. In this way, not articulating the in the word "fourth" could index, for example, a lack of education in addition to a lower social class. According to this theory, any linguistic variable has its own indexical field spanning any number of potential meanings.
These indexical fields are fluid and change depending on their usage in different contexts or in combination with other variables. This view of style revolves around variation, interpretation of variation as a purely indexical system built from ideological connections. In Judith Irvine's conception of style she emphasizes the fact that a style is defined only within a social framework. A variant and the social meanings it indexes are not inherently linked, the social meanings exist as ideologically mediated interpretations made by members of the social framework, she highlights the fact that social meanings such as group membership mean nothing without an ideology to interpret them. Mary Bucholtz's approach to style relies on ideology, she defines style as "a unidimensional continuum between vernacular and standard that varies based on the degree of speaker self-monitoring in a given speech context". This continuum depends on the ideology of the speaker, for they self-monitor depending on their ideologies concerning particular words.
Bucholtz explains th
Linguistic prescription, or prescriptive grammar, is the attempt to lay down rules defining preferred or "correct" use of language. These rules may address such linguistic aspects as spelling, vocabulary and semantics. Sometimes informed by linguistic purism, such normative practices may suggest that some usages are incorrect, lack communicative effect, or are of low aesthetic value, they may include judgments on proper and politically correct language use. Linguistic prescriptivism may aim to establish a standard language, teach what a particular society perceives as a correct form, or advise on effective and stylistically felicitous communication. If usage preferences are conservative, prescription might appear resistant to language change. Prescriptive approaches to language are contrasted with the descriptive approach, employed in academic linguistics, which observes and records how language is used; the basis of linguistic research is text analysis and field study, both of which are descriptive activities.
Description, may include researchers' observations of their own language usage. In the Eastern European linguistic tradition, the discipline dealing with standard language cultivation and prescription is known as "language culture" or "speech culture". Despite being apparent opposites and description are considered complementary, as comprehensive descriptive accounts must take existing speaker preferences into account, an understanding of how language is used is necessary for prescription to be effective. Since the mid-20th century some dictionaries and style guides, which are prescriptive works by nature, have integrated descriptive material and approaches. Examples of guides updated to add more descriptive and evidence-based material include Webster's Third New International Dictionary and the third edition Garner's Modern English Usage in English, or the Nouveau Petit Robert in French. A descriptive approach can be useful when approaching topics of ongoing conflict between authorities, or in different dialects, styles, or registers.
Other guides, such as The Chicago Manual of Style, are designed to impose a single style and thus remain prescriptive. Some authors define "prescriptivism" as the concept where a certain language variety is promoted as linguistically superior to others, thus recognizing the standard language ideology as a constitutive element of prescriptivism or identifying prescriptivism with this system of views. Others, use this term in relation to any attempts to recommend or mandate a particular way of language usage, however, implying that these practices must involve propagating the standard language ideology. According to another understanding, the prescriptive attitude is an approach to norm-formulating and codification that involves imposing arbitrary rulings upon a speech community, as opposed to more liberal approaches that draw from descriptive surveys. Mate Kapović makes a distinction between "prescription" and "prescriptivism", defining the former as "process of codification of a certain variety of language for some sort of official use", the latter as "an unscientific tendency to mystify linguistic prescription".
Linguistic prescription is categorized as the final stage in a language standardization process. It is politically motivated, it can be included in the cultivation of a culture. As culture is seen to be a major force in the development of standard language, multilingual countries promote standardization and advocate adherence to prescriptive norms; the chief aim of linguistic prescription is to specify preferred language forms in a way, taught and learned. Prescription may apply to most aspects of language, including spelling, vocabulary and semantics. Prescription is useful for facilitating inter-regional communication, allowing speakers of divergent dialects to understand a standardized idiom used in broadcasting, for example, more than each other's dialects. While such a lingua franca may evolve by itself, the desire to formally codify and promote it is widespread in most parts of the world. Writers or communicators adhere to prescriptive rules to make their communication clearer and more understood.
Stability of a language over time helps one to understand writings from the past. Foreign language instruction is considered a form of prescription, since it involves instructing learners how to speak, based on usage documentation laid down by others. Linguistic prescription may be used to advance a social or political ideology. During the second half of the 20th century, efforts driven by various advocacy groups had considerable influence on language use under the broad banner of "political correctness", to promote special rules for anti-sexist, anti-racist, or generically anti-discriminatory language. George Orwell criticized the use of euphemisms and convoluted phrasing as a means of hiding insincerity in Politics and the English Language, his fictional "Newspeak" is a parody of ideologically motivated linguistic prescriptivism. Prescription presupposes authorities whose judgments may come to be followed by many other speakers and writers. For English, these authorities tend to be books. H. W. Fowler's Mo
Ruqaiya Hasan was a professor of linguistics who held visiting positions and taught at various universities in England. Her last appointment was at Macquarie University in Sydney, from which she retired as emeritus professor in 1994. Throughout her career she researched and published in the areas of verbal art, culture and text, text and texture and semantic variation; the latter involved the devising of extensive semantic system networks for the analysis of meaning in occurring dialogues. Born in 1931 in Pratapgarh, Hasan took her undergraduate degree at the University of Allahabad, in 1953, in English literature and history, her elder brother Zawwar Hasan, working as a journalist in Pakistan brought her and the rest of the family to Lahore in 1954. From 1954 to 1956, she was a lecturer at the Training College for Teachers of the Deaf, in Lahore, Pakistan. In 1958, she completed an MA in English literature at Government College Lahore, the University of the Punjab. From 1959 to 1960 she was a lecturer in English language and literature at Lahore's Queen Mary College.
With a British Council scholarship, Hasan went to Edinburgh where she completed a postgraduate diploma at the University of Edinburgh in applied linguistics. In 1964 she completed her PhD in linguistics at the University of Edinburgh; the title of her thesis was'A Linguistic Study of Contrasting Features in the Style of Two Contemporary English Prose Writers'. The writers were William Golding, she drew on Halliday's early work, in particular, his "Categories of the Theory of Grammar" paper, published in 1961. Between 1964 and 1971 she held various research fellowships, first with the Nuffield Foreign Languages and Teaching Materials Project, at the University of Leeds, where she directed the Child Language Survey. Between 1965 and 1967 she was a research fellow with the Nuffield Programme in Linguistics and English Teaching, at University College London. From 1968 to 1971, she worked in the Sociological Research Unit, with Basil Bernstein, where she directed the Nuffield Research Project on Sociolinguistic Aspects of Children's Stories.
Following this she went to the Department of Linguistics and Anthropology, at Northwestern University in Illinois, before returning to England and taking up a lectureship in the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics at the University of Essex. She migrated to Australia in 1976, was appointed senior lecturer in linguistics at Macquarie University, she retired from Macquarie in 1994 as emeritus professor. She has held numerous visiting appointments in the US, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong. Hasan worked in her career of more than 50 years in linguistics around a number of central concerns, but all have set out from a basic conviction concerning the "continuity from the living of life right down to the morpheme", her early PhD research began a long interest in verbal art. In the 1960s she worked at the Sociolinguistic Research Centre with Basil Bernstein,on issues concerning the relation of language and the distribution of forms of consciousness; this engagement spawned both her work on semantic variation, provided the impetus and data for her early studies of what underpins text unity—in her terms and text structure.
In 1976, with MAK Halliday she published what remains the most comprehensive analysis of cohesion in English. In their further co-authored book, Language Context and Text: Aspects of Language in a Social-Semiotic Perspective, Hasan set out the interrelationships of texture and text structure. In all of these endeavours, language as a social semiotic served as the point of departure; the specific type of connection she saw between language and social context has meant that her work has been concerned with many important problems in linguistics, such as the relations between language and culture and social class and learning. A distinguishing feature of her contributions is her work on many of these larger questions at the same time as attending to matters of detailed linguistic description, she divided linguistic theories into two categories: "externalist" and "internalist". She applied the term "externalist" to those theories where language is assigned a "subsidiary role" in the creation of meaning.
In such theories, language plays no role in bringing about the existence of the thing to be understood or expressed. In the externalist approach, "language is reduced to a name device: it becomes a set of'names' that label pre-existing things, events, so on, it is a condition of naming that the phenomena should exist and be recognisable as having specific identities quite independent of the'names' that the speakers of the language choose to give them." She urged linguists to abandon the externalist view, arguing instead for a linguistic model "that is capable of doing two disparate things at once: first, we need to show that meanings are the artefact of language and so are internal to it. Hasan followed but extended the model of linguistic context set out by Michael Halliday going back to the 1960s, in which he proposed that linguistic context must be seen as a "semiotic construct" with three essential parameters: field and mode. Hasan argued that context is essential to resolving Saussure's dichotomy of'langue' and'parole'.
Hasan made a theoretical distinction between "relevant context" [aspects of context encapsulated in the t
Pledge of Allegiance
The Pledge of Allegiance of the United States is an expression of allegiance to the flag of the United States and the republic of the United States of America. It was composed by Captain George Thatcher Balch, a Union Army Officer during the Civil War and a teacher of patriotism in New York City schools; the form of the pledge used today was devised by Francis Bellamy in 1892, formally adopted by Congress as the pledge in 1942. The official name of The Pledge of Allegiance was adopted in 1945; the most recent alteration of its wording came on Flag Day in 1954, when the words "under God" were added. Congressional sessions open with the recital of the Pledge, as do many government meetings at local levels, meetings held by many private organizations. All states except Hawaii, Iowa and Wyoming require a scheduled recitation of the pledge in the public schools, although the Supreme Court has ruled in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette that students cannot be compelled to recite the Pledge, nor can they be punished for not doing so.
In a number of states, state flag pledges of allegiance are required to be recited after this. The United States Flag Code says: The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag—"I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, with liberty and justice for all."—should be rendered by standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. When not in uniform men should remove any non-religious headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Persons in uniform should remain silent, face the flag, render the military salute. Members of the Armed Forces not in uniform and veterans may render the military salute in the manner provided for persons in uniform; the Pledge of Allegiance, as it exists in its current form, was composed in August 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister, a Christian socialist, the cousin of socialist utopian novelist Edward Bellamy. There did exist a previous version created by Captain George T. Balch, a veteran of the Civil War, who became auditor of the New York Board of Education.
Balch's pledge, which existed contemporaneously with the Bellamy version until the 1923 National Flag Conference, read: We give our heads and hearts to God and our country. Balch was a proponent of teaching children those of immigrants, loyalty to the United States going so far as to write a book on the subject and work with both the government and private organizations to distribute flags to every classroom and school. Balch's pledge, which predates Bellamy's by 5 years and was embraced by many schools, by the Daughters of the American Revolution until the 1910s, by the Grand Army of the Republic until the 1923 National Flag Conference, is overlooked when discussing the history of the Pledge. Bellamy, did not approve of the pledge as Balch had written it, referring to the text as "too juvenile and lacking in dignity." The Bellamy "Pledge of Allegiance" was first published in the September 8 issue of the popular children's magazine The Youth's Companion as part of the National Public-School Celebration of Columbus Day, a celebration of the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas.
The event was conceived and promoted by James B. Upham, a marketer for the magazine, as a campaign to instill the idea of American nationalism in students and to encourage children to raise flags above their schools. According to author Margarette S. Miller, this campaign was in line both with Upham's patriotic vision as well as with his commercial interest. According to Miller, Upham "would say to his wife:'Mary, if I can instill into the minds of our American youth a love for their country and the principles on which it was founded, create in them an ambition to carry on with the ideals which the early founders wrote into The Constitution, I shall not have lived in vain.'"Bellamy's original Pledge read: I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, with liberty and justice for all. The Pledge was supposed to be quick and to the point. Bellamy designed it to be recited in 15 seconds; as a socialist, he had also considered using the words equality and fraternity but decided against it, knowing that the state superintendents of education on his committee were against equality for women and African Americans.
Francis Bellamy and Upham had lined up the National Education Association to support the Youth's Companion as a sponsor of the Columbus Day observance and the use in that observance of the American flag. By June 29, 1892, Bellamy and Upham had arranged for Congress and President Benjamin Harrison to announce a proclamation making the public school flag ceremony the center of the Columbus Day celebrations; this arrangement was formalized when Harrison issued Presidential Proclamation 335. Subsequently, the Pledge was first used in public schools on October 12, 1892, during Columbus Day observances organized to coincide with the opening of the World's Columbian Exposition, Illinois. In his recollection of the creation of the Pledge, Francis Bellamy said, "At the beginning of the nineties patriotism and national feeling was at a low ebb; the patriotic ardor of the Civil War was an old story... The time was ripe for a reawakening of simple Americanism and the leaders in the new movement rightly felt that patriotic education should begin in the public schools."
James Upham "felt that a flag should be on every schoolhouse," so his publication "fostered a plan of selling flags to schools through the children themselves at cost, whi
International Organization for Standardization
The International Organization for Standardization is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various national standards organizations. Founded on 23 February 1947, the organization promotes worldwide proprietary and commercial standards, it is headquartered in Geneva and works in 164 countries. It was one of the first organizations granted general consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council; the International Organization for Standardization is an independent, non-governmental organization, the members of which are the standards organizations of the 164 member countries. It is the world's largest developer of voluntary international standards and facilitates world trade by providing common standards between nations. Over twenty thousand standards have been set covering everything from manufactured products and technology to food safety and healthcare. Use of the standards aids in the creation of products and services that are safe, reliable and of good quality.
The standards help businesses increase productivity while minimizing errors and waste. By enabling products from different markets to be directly compared, they facilitate companies in entering new markets and assist in the development of global trade on a fair basis; the standards serve to safeguard consumers and the end-users of products and services, ensuring that certified products conform to the minimum standards set internationally. The three official languages of the ISO are English and Russian; the name of the organization in French is Organisation internationale de normalisation, in Russian, Международная организация по стандартизации. ISO is not an acronym; the organization adopted ISO as its abbreviated name in reference to the Greek word isos, as its name in the three official languages would have different acronyms. During the founding meetings of the new organization, the Greek word explanation was not invoked, so this meaning may have been made public later. ISO gives this explanation of the name: "Because'International Organization for Standardization' would have different acronyms in different languages, our founders decided to give it the short form ISO.
ISO is derived from the Greek isos, meaning equal. Whatever the country, whatever the language, the short form of our name is always ISO."Both the name ISO and the ISO logo are registered trademarks, their use is restricted. The organization today known as ISO began in 1928 as the International Federation of the National Standardizing Associations, it was suspended in 1942 during World War II, but after the war ISA was approached by the formed United Nations Standards Coordinating Committee with a proposal to form a new global standards body. In October 1946, ISA and UNSCC delegates from 25 countries met in London and agreed to join forces to create the new International Organization for Standardization. ISO is a voluntary organization whose members are recognized authorities on standards, each one representing one country. Members meet annually at a General Assembly to discuss ISO's strategic objectives; the organization is coordinated by a Central Secretariat based in Geneva. A Council with a rotating membership of 20 member bodies provides guidance and governance, including setting the Central Secretariat's annual budget.
The Technical Management Board is responsible for over 250 technical committees, who develop the ISO standards. ISO has formed two joint committees with the International Electrotechnical Commission to develop standards and terminology in the areas of electrical and electronic related technologies. ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee 1 was created in 1987 to "evelop, maintain and facilitate IT standards", where IT refers to information technology. ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee 2 was created in 2009 for the purpose of "tandardization in the field of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources". ISO has 163 national members. ISO has three membership categories: Member bodies are national bodies considered the most representative standards body in each country; these are the only members of ISO. Correspondent members are countries; these members do not participate in standards promulgation. Subscriber members are countries with small economies, they can follow the development of standards. Participating members are called "P" members, as opposed to observing members, who are called "O" members.
ISO is funded by a combination of: Organizations that manage the specific projects or loan experts to participate in the technical work. Subscriptions from member bodies; these subscriptions are in proportion to each country's gross national trade figures. Sale of standards. ISO's main products are international standards. ISO publishes technical reports, technical specifications, publicly available specifications, technical corrigenda, guides. International standards These are designated using the format ISO nnnnn: Title, where nnnnn is the number of the standard, p is an optional part number, yyyy is the year published, Title describes the subject. IEC for International Electrotechnical Commission is included if the standard results from the work of ISO/IEC JTC1. ASTM is used for standards developed in cooperation with ASTM International. Yyyy and IS are not used for an incomplete or unpublished standard and may under some
The word ain't is a contraction for am not, is not, are not, has not, have not in the common English language vernacular. In some dialects ain't is used as a contraction of do not, does not, did not; the development of ain't for the various forms of to be not, to have not, to do not occurred independently, at different times. The usage of ain't for the forms of to be not was established by the mid-18th century, for the forms of to have not by the early 19th century; the usage of ain't is a continuing subject of controversy in English. Ain't is used by many speakers in oral and informal settings in certain regions and dialects, its usage is highly stigmatized, it can be used by the general public as a marker of low socio-economic or regional status or education level. Its use is considered non-standard by dictionaries and style guides except when used for rhetorical effect. Ain't has several antecedents in English, corresponding to the various forms of to be not and to have not that ain't contracts.
The development of ain't for to have not is a diachronic coincidence. Amn't as a contraction of am not is known from 1618; as the "mn" combination of two nasal consonants is disfavoured by many English speakers, the "m" of amn't began to be elided, reflected in writing with the new form an't. Aren't as a contraction for are not first appeared in 1675. In non-rhotic dialects, aren't lost its "r" sound, began to be pronounced as an't. An't arose from am not and are not simultaneously. An't first appears in print in the work of English Restoration playwrights. In 1695 an't was used as a contraction of "am not", in William Congreve's play Love for Love: "I can hear you farther off, I an't deaf", but as early as 1696 Sir John Vanbrugh uses an't to mean "are not" in The Relapse: "Hark thee shoemaker! These shoes an't ugly, but they don't fit me". An't are not. Isn't was sometimes written as in't or en't, which could have changed into an't. An't for is not may have filled a gap as an extension of the already-used conjugations for to be not.
Jonathan Swift used an't to mean is not in Letter 19 of his Journal to Stella: It an't my fault,'tis Patrick's fault. An't with a long "a" sound began to be written as ain't, which first appears in writing in 1749. By the time ain't appeared, an't was being used for am not, are not, is not. An't and ain't coexisted as written forms well into the nineteenth century—Charles Dickens used the terms interchangeably, as in Chapter 13, Book the Second of Little Dorrit: "'I guessed it was you, Mr Pancks", said she,'for it's quite your regular night. An't Mr Pancks, though. In the English lawyer William Hickey's memoirs, ain't appears as a contraction of aren't. Han't or ha'n't, an early contraction for has not and have not, developed from the elision of the "s" of has not and the "v" of have not. Han't appeared in the work of English Restoration playwrights, as in The Country Wife by William Wycherley: Gentlemen and Ladies, han't you all heard the late sad report / of poor Mr. Horner. Much like an't, han't was sometimes pronounced with a long "a", yielding hain't.
With H-dropping, the "h" of han't or hain't disappeared in most dialects, became ain't. Ain't as a contraction for has not/have not first appeared in dictionaries in the 1830s, appeared in 1819 in Niles' Weekly Register: Strike! Why I ain't got nobody here to strike.... Charles Dickens used ain't to mean haven't in Chapter 28 of Martin Chuzzlewit: "You ain't got nothing to cry for, bless you! He's righter than a trivet!"Like with an't, han't and ain't were found together late into the nineteenth century, as in Chapter 12 of Dickens' Our Mutual Friend: "'Well, have you finished?' asked the strange man.'No,' said Riderhood,'I ain't'....'You sir! You han't said what you want of me.'" Ain't meaning didn't is considered a feature unique to African American Vernacular English, although it can be found in some dialects of Caribbean English as well. It may function not as a true variant of as a creole-like tense-neutral negator, its origin may have been due to approximation when early African Americans acquired English as a second language.
Ain't is attested for the present-tense constructions do not or does not. Linguistically, ain't is formed by the same rule that English speakers use to form aren't and other contractions of auxiliary verbs. Most linguists consider usage of ain't to be grammatical, as long as its users convey their intended meaning to their audience. In other words, a sentence such as "She ain't got no sense" is grammatical because it follows a native speaker's word order, because a native speaker would recognize the meaning of that sentence. Linguists draw a distinction, between grammaticality and acceptability: what may be considered grammatical across all dialects may be considered not acceptable in certain dialects or contexts; the usage of ain't is unacceptable in some situations. Functionally, ain't has operated in part to plug what is known as the "amn't gap" – the anomalous situation in standard English whereby there are standard contractions for other forms of to be not, but no standard contraction for am not.
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti