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According to one interpretation, America from its inception was a nation committed to democracy, a peoples determined to fashion a new civilization based upon freedom of choice for all men 0 This view of its uniqueness has given rise to the query whether American civilization is also sui generis or whether it is derived, and whether Americans have developed a culture which has significantly enriched the world. Human history records a conscious effort by man to progress from primitivism to enlightenment, from the cave to the city, from the pebble tool to the megamachineo The idea of progress has inspired many civilization to invention in order to secure their permanence as well as introduce order and unity into their world. Continuity has not always distinguished history, but sometimes that break has been voluntary and has given rise to yet another experiment in social living. The American colonies, cultural nationalists have argued, consciously chose to sever themselves from the practices of European - 2 - civilization and give form to a substantially different culture, pure in its newness and strong in its youthful vitality.