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The word requirement is at least a 1,000 words.
Your goal for the Final Exam Essay is to identify and analyze a larger pattern or process of U.S. History, and to explain how that pattern/process changed or continued over the comprehensive timeline studied in this course.
By “larger pattern or process,” we mean a theme, but for history it’s crucial to think beyond just a topic. We must consider the development and evolution of a theme over time.
You will use Farewell to Manzanar, and other assigned readings of your choice, as the evidence that supports your conclusion about the pattern/process you chose to evaluate.
Timeline. : late 19th to early 20th century (1860’s-1930’s)
Reconstruction and Jim Crow – rebuilding the nation post-Civil War, and the struggle of freedmen to gain rights
Western Settlement and Indian Wars – railroads and ethnic conflicts in the final stages of settling the west
The Gilded Age and Industrialism – economic growth, industrialization, new immigration, and urbanization
Week 2 Module will cover these topics:
US Imperialism and Overseas Territories – the U.S. expanded beyond its own borders and became a global power
The Progressive Era – reform and regulation in response to conditions of the Gilded Age
World War I – global conflict that brought the U.S. deeper into world power
Week 3 Module will cover these topics:
The Roaring 1920s – economic boom cycle, clashes between cultural modernism and traditionalism
The Great Depression and the New Deal – economic crash and the government response
Middle to Late 20th century ( 1940’s-early 2000’s)
World War II – global crisis that elevated the status of the United States as world leader, and led to conflicts and changes domestically in America
Start of the Cold War, 1950s – early phases of a tense standoff between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. (Russia) over nuclear weapons and the spread of communism, which lasted for four decades
The Affluent Society, 1950s – post-war economic boom cycle, growth of the middle class, consumer culture, youth culture, conformity and rebellion
Week 5 Module will cover these topics:
The Civil Rights Movement, 1950s/1960s – the African American struggle to reverse almost a century of race-based discrimination under Jim Crow laws in southern states
The 1960s: Rights Movements Continue – more organized social activism by historically marginalized Americans
Week 6 Module will cover these topics:
The 1960s: the Vietnam War – costly proxy war in southeast Asia, source of discontent and divisions in America, with goals left unfulfilled
The 1970s & 1980s: New Conservatism – after the turmoil of the 1960s, a dull and stagnant 1970s, followed by a surge in patriotism, conservative politics, and traditional social values
Continuing Questions for Modern Americans – end of the Cold War, and ongoing questions for the era of technology, the internet, and globalization