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[SOLVED] Assignment 1: Dealing with Diversity in America from Reconstruction

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Assignment 1:  Dealing with Diversity in America from Reconstruction through the 1920s 

Due Week 3 and worth 120 points.  The formal deadline is on Monday morning at 9am Eastern Time; this is the next day after Week 3 ends.  Watch announcements, emails, and postings for exact dates and any holiday notes that sometimes arise.

[NOTE ON ECREE:  The university is adopting a tool called ecree for helping and doing writing assignments in many classes. In our History 105 class, we will be using the ecree program only for EXTRA CREDIT as a tool for doing work on your rough draft of the paper.  We hope this approach encourages more rough drafting and revision work by students as well as makes students familiar with this useful new tool.  For Assignment 1, in the Week 3 unit, you will see the link “EXTRA CREDIT: ROUGH DRAFT….”—that is where you can get up to 5 points of extra credit.   Instructions will be posted there in the early days of the summer course.  If you try this option, you will be able to use the file developed in ecree as a rough draft; you will then download that draft and edit it further.  Then, once your paper is fully polished and finished  as you see fit, you will then submit it at the next link in the Week 3 unit, which says “ASSIGNMENT 1:  DEALING WITH DIVERSITY….”.  ]

BACKGROUND FOR THE PAPER: This is a 5-paragraph paper based on research in designated sources.  It is a position paper in which you support a thesis statement by reason and historical examples.  After the Civil War, the United States had to recover from war, handle western expansion, and grapple with very new economic forms. However, its greatest issues would revolve around the legacies of slavery and increasing diversity in the decades after the Civil War. In the South, former slaves now had freedom and new opportunities but, despite the Reconstruction period, faced old prejudices and rapidly forming new barriers. Immigrants from Europe and Asia came in large numbers but then faced political and social restrictions. Women continued to seek rights. Yet, on the whole, America became increasingly diverse by the 1920s. Consider developments, policies, and laws in that period from 1865 to the 1920s. Examine the two statements below and drawing from provided sources, present a paper with specific examples and arguments to demonstrate the validity of your position. [Don’t use this background paragraph in your paper.]

Topic and Thesis Statement—choose one of the following as your Thesis Statement:  

  • THESIS STATEMENT 1:  Political policies in the period from 1865 to the 1920s generally tried to promote diversity and “the melting pot” despite the strong prejudices of a few.
  • THESIS STATEMENT 2:  Political policies in the period from 1865 to the 1920s generally tried to hinder or restrict diversity and “the melting pot”, in part because of widespread prejudices. 
  • Plan to make that thesis statement the last sentence in your introductory paragraph.  The general subject is DIVERSITY and policy in that period of history.  You may moderate the wording slightly to fit more precisely the position you wish to take.  This is NOT a simple statement of a topic; it is a statement of a position you are taking about that topic.  p.s.—Valid arguments and “A” papers can be made with either thesis.  So, you choose the one you think is the stronger position.   

After giving general consideration to your assigned readings so far and any research (using sources listed on this sheet), select one of the positions above as your position—your thesis. (Sometimes after doing more thorough research, you might choose the reverse position. This happens with critical thinking and inquiry. Your final paper might end up taking a different position than you originally envisioned.) Organize your paper as follows with the four parts below (see TEMPLATE also), handling these issues:  

  1. Part One—one paragraph.  INTRODUCTION AND THESIS STATEMENT.  The position you choose will be the thesis statement in your opening paragraph; make it the last sentence of the paragraph.
  2. Part Two—two paragraphs normally.  THREE EXAMPLES.  To support your thesis, use three (3) specific examples from different decades between 1865 and 1930. The examples should be specific and clearly support your thesis.  You may narrowly focus on race or gender or immigrant status, or you may use examples relevant to all categories.  In these paragraphs one generally must have in-text citations to support your specific examples and to show where the information was found.  Spread out the examples—different decades (tip—and different chapters of the class text).  Make the examples SPECIFIC.  The FORMAT SAMPLE paper can also help on this part.   
  3. Part Three—one paragraph normally. DEALING WITH THE OPPOSING VIEW. The opposing view is the thesis statement you did NOT choose. Identify that opposing view and explain why the opposing view is weak in comparison to yours. No new research needed; just one paragraph of critical thinking suggesting why your thesis/position is stronger than that different view.  Approach it this way:  You adopted a thesis statement. The opposing view is the thesis statement you did NOT adopt. You might start this paragraph by saying “Some may disagree with my thesis and argue that  ——- .”  THEN—you spend 3 or 4 sentences giving a reasoned argument why your thesis is stronger than the opposing view. 
  4. Part Four—one paragraph:  LEGACY TODAY AND CONCLUSION:  Consider your life and work today in relation to DIVERSITY issues and current “policies” and practices.  Also consider your major. In what way does the history you have shown shape or impact diversity issues in your workplace or desired profession? This will work as the conclusion paragraph.  Be succinct—consider how these diversity issues covered in your paper impacted later laws and regulations and hiring rules—and yet some of the problem issues keep resurfacing in different ways. The FORMAT SAMPLE paper has good suggestions for this part also.

After the fourth part concluding the paper, be sure you have the numbered list of sources at the end.  And be sure each source listed is also used and cited clearly in the body of the paper.  The FORMAT SAMPLE paper illustrates this.

Length: The paper should be 500-to-750 words in length. 500 is a minimum.  750 is a guideline as a maximum.  This word-count does not include any title page or sources list.

Research and References: You must use a MINIMUM of three sources; the Schultz textbook must be one of them. Your other two sources MUST be drawn from the list provided below on this instruction sheet. This is guided research, not googling. 

Source list for Assignment 1: Some sources listed below are “primary” sources from the time period being studied. Some sources below can be accessed via direct link. 

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