Culminating Paper

Below are several options for your culminating response paper. Notice that each option corresponds to the next few textbook chapters. Choose one of the options for your culminating paper and begin to think about it in depth.

Your paper:

should only utilize the textbooks: Give Me Liberty and Voices of Freedom
should include at least two primary sources from Voices of Freedom
should be 3-5 pages long, double-spaced
should include relevant quotes of both primary and secondary sources
should include an introduction and a conclusion that provide historical context and to tie the paper together.
should be divided into paragraphs
should be checked for grammar and spelling errors
All these are identical to the feedback you’ve received throughout the semester, so grading for this last paper will be more strict.

Also, slavery existed in the colonies for well over 100 years and in the United States for nearly 100 years. Therefore, a paper on any of the following options should convey how slavery is related to the issue. And finally, Foner your textbook author, has identified “liberty” as a thread that runs through the pre-Civil War era. A good paper will convey an understanding of either liberty, republicanism or liberalism as they relate to the paper topic.


Option A: Reform Movements

Characterize the abolitionist movements (white and black) in the mid-1800s? Note their purpose, their strategies and their goals. Take into account the various activities in which the abolitionists engaged.

Address one or more of the following questions:

What were the range of abolitionist or anti-slavery activities that African Americans pursued?
How was the abolition movement affected by other social and economic changes such as the rise in literacy, new print technology, and ideas associated with the market revolution?
How was racism evident in the abolitionist movement?
How did white women’s participation in the abolitionist movement push them to a new understanding of their own rights and oppression?
How did the antislavery movement give rise to a new understanding of citizenship and the rights it afforded?
What place did colonization occupy in the abolitionist movement?

Option B: Manifest Destiny

What was “Manifest Destiny” and how does it explain U.S. actions in terms of early to middle 19th century foreign policy, including U.S. relations with Native American groups?
Even though the phrase was not used until 1845, it was clearly in effect earlier. Explain.
Consider including in your paper the following events/people: John L. O’Sullivan, Lewis and Clark, Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, James K. Polk, American Indians, the Louisiana Purchase, Missouri Compromise, the Monroe Doctrine, the Mexican-American War, Kansas-Nebraska, the Compromise of 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Clause, John Brown, Mexican American War, the Dred Scott Decision.


Option C: The Civil War

How did a war to preserve the Union become a war to end slavery?
How are American notions of liberty related to the Civil War?
How did the Civil War transform the national economy and create a stronger nation-state?
Consider including the following in your paper: the sectional origins of the war (Northwest Ordinances, Missouri Compromise, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, the Compromise of 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Act, the Dred Scott Decision), the role of African Americans in winning the war and in defining the war’s consequences, women’s war efforts in the North and the South, ideas of liberty and republicanism, the market revolution’s effect on the outcome of the war

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