Feudalism in Today's Society

Essay by Frog9091University, Bachelor's April 2003

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Feudalism in Today's Society

When searching for information on feudalism it is difficult to find modern sources speaking of it in a positive connotation. Most seem to regard it as merely a necessary step to capitalism. However, there are many aspects of feudalism still present in our society. Our society's modes of defense and organization, as well as the devices used to make our standard of living possible, can be traced back to the age of feudalism.

The feudal system stemmed from the people's need to defend themselves from their many enemies. The main reason that people were willing to become vassals and work for their lord was so that they could be protected by him (Tierney 162). In the same sense, people in modern society expect their government to provide protection from any enemies that arise. In the feudal system, this protection was in the form of armies provided by the vassals to the lord.

These armies where made up of knights who where expected to fight when called upon by their lords to do so (Tierney 162 ). In modern society the armies are also made up of people in the community who are called upon during times of war through, a system of drafts. In the Middle Ages, when a neighboring fief controlled by the same lord was attacked, the neighbor was expected to help defend it (Feudal Life). If one of the United States is attacked by a hostel force, soldiers are drafted from all of the adjoining states, not just the one under attack.

The organization of the country into different states that are in turn divided into counties and cities is also reminiscent of the feudal system. Each successively smaller division is run by it's own elected official and each official answers to the...