Thursday, March 20, 2008

Reading assignment and blog for week of 3/24

Finish reading and copious notes for Chapter 22 of Out of Many.

For your blog -
Read Chapter 8 of The Story of American Freedom by Friday 3/28.

In Chapter 8 of The Story of American Freedom, Eric Foner explains that "the enlistment of democracy and freedom as ideological war weapons, qualities that set the country apart from German authoritarianism, inevitably inspired demands for their expansion at home."

In your opinion, why did American social movements gain momentum during the period leading up to and immediately following the Great War. Reference at least three achievements of social movements to support your answer.

Be prepared to have a seminar on this chapter on Friday 3/28.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

What constitutes a just war? Analyzing the US' involvement in WWI and modern-day Iraq

This week marks the fifth consecutive year that US forces have been at war in Iraq. With all the emphasis we can anticipate the media and politicans will give this commemorative anniversary, it seems logical that we take some time to think together as a class about wars, past and present.

1) Consider what you know about World War I, the current War on Terror and global conflict in general. Then read an article from section I and II (read more if you like.) The hand out entitiled "Why did the US enter WWI" from last week will be helpful as well.

A) bulleted outline of key historical perspectives on the US' role in WWI, requires Acrobat reader
b) Describes public opinion and the historical impact of US foreign policy in the Great Wardiscussion of US public opinion on American involvement in WWI
c) discussion of US public opinion on American involvement in WWI

II) IraqD)"Just War or Just a War" by former US President Jimmy Carter, New York Times, 2003
(argues against continued US occupation and war in Iraq)

E) "Fighting a Just War in Iraq" by Joseph Locatone, The Heritage Foundation, 2003 in favor of continued US occupation and war in Iraq)

F) "A War We Just Might Win" by Michael O' Hanlon and Kenneth Pollack, New York Times, 2007
(offers analysis of US' effectiveness in Iraq)

2) Respond to the following questions. Include details from the articles and class as evidence of your work:

  • What makes a war just?
  • Was the US justified in it's decision to aid and ultimately join the Allied Powers in the Great War?
  • Is the US' involvement in Iraq just? Compare and contrast these conflicts and the US' role in them.

(Note - this assignment is intended to be analytical and maybe controversial, it's OK for us to disagree, but please maintain academic decorum and respect for one another's views.)

200 word minimumPlease respond to at least one other post

Due friday 3/21 by 5:00 p.m. (we don't have school that day.)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Nationalist Movements in Hawaii and Puerto Rico

This week we are exploring the reasons that the US government sought colonial rule over regions of the Caribbean and South Pacific at the turn of the 20th century. The legitimacy of US authority over commonwealths like Puerto Rico, Guam, Samoa and even the statehood of Hawaii remain controversial issues in modern society. This week's blog asks that you read some articles on contemporary nationalist movements and analyze the call for independence that is becoming a strong political movement among indigenous people in these areas.


Actively read the following articles on independence movements in Hawaii and Puerto Rico

Summarize the articles and explain the reasons why Puerto Rican and Hawaiian nationalists feel their homelands should be granted full independence by the US government.

In your opinion, would autonomy and self-rule benefit the people of Hawaii and Puerto Rico or exacerbate poverty and other problems that exist in these areas today? Explain using support from the article, your knowledge of history and any outside sources that you may use to further research this assignment. If you read other sources, be sure to cite the URL or newssource in your post.

minimum 200 words, please comment on the post of one of your peers.
Due Friday 3/7 before class.

Story of American Freedom, Chapter 7 seminar : Progressive Freedom

On p. 153 Foner notes that the pursuit of happiness was a key aspect of the Progressive movement and quotes Dewian reformer Randolph Bourne as saying "freedom means a democratic cooperation in determining the ideas, purposes, industrial and social institutions of a country." To what extent was this standard of freedom advanced in the Progressive Era?

Refer to different social classes, cultural and political groups on a national and international level.

Prepare notes and questions based on this chapter and your text readings on imperialism at the turn of the century.