A. What do I write about?
1. Thesis – Explain the topic of the article as well as the author’s main argument or focus.
2. Evidence – Analyze the evidence that the author uses to support his/her thesis. Does the evidence support his/her thesis? Identify any primary sources used. Primary sources are sources that were contemporary for the period discussed. Typically, an historical journal article uses newspaper articles and magazine articles of the era. Other primary sources would be essays written in that time period such as autobiographies, pamphlets, letters, diaries, and legal documents. Here’s a few examples: Harper’s Weekly (a popular magazine in the 1800s), The New York Times (published in the time period discussed), The Federalist Papers (a collection of essays written by James Madison, John Jay and Alexander Hamilton, written in 1787), “Common Sense” (a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine in 1776), letters from John Adams to Abigail Adams, and the diary of Mary Chestnut which was written during the Civil War. Secondary sources are typically textbooks, history books, biographies, and scholarly journal articles.
Use this format for citing pages of your article in the Common Assignment: (56). You do not need to write the name of the article.
Ø This is not a research paper. Do not use Wikipedia. Do not copy/past from the Internet.
3. Conclusion – How did the article change your knowledge of that historical topic. How does your background affect your reading of this topic?
4. Connection to the present You should make a connection to whatever you read to the present day. Example: Coxey’s Army (1894) was a march to Washington in which the marchers demanded jobs from the federal government. It foreshadows some modern day Washington marches such as the 2016 Women’s March.
5. Provide comments and/or criticisms of the work. You can use direct quotes but be sure you use quotation marks. Avoid long quotes (more than three lines). You do not use any other sources.
Ø You are limited to two quotes. If you do use more than two, I will dock points. If you do use a long quote, I will dock points.
1. How long does it have to be? It should be at least 550 words. It can be longer.
2. Format – The essay should be double-spaced (except for the citation). The font should be Times New Roman, 12 point.
3. Citation – Your citation should use the correct Chicago Style which is used by historians. You can use the citations that most databases use. You can copy the citation to the clipboard on Word.
4. It must be in Word.
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