In this assignment, you will propose the research topic pertinent to US History from Reconstruction (1865) to the present you would like to investigate this term in a brief, 1 – 2 page (300 – 500 word) essay.
The purpose of this assignment is to decide what you want to write about and to receive guidance on how to focus your topic and make it something that you are able to examine in depth in an argumentative, historical research paper of 5 – 7 pages (1250 – 1750 words) in length. **Remember that this must be argumentative. You cannot simply list facts about this topic, but instead must take a position on an issue and prove this position.**
See the Schedule in the Syllabus Module for due dates. Review the Rubric attached to the Assignment Submission Folder for grading information.
Examples of broad paper topics that can be narrowed down to fit an argument –
Example of a broad topic getting narrowed/focused –
20th Century Labor Movement > using strikes as a tool to accomplish goals > 1892 Homestead Strike > Pinkerton Detective Agency/Strikebreakers > the meaning and origin of the song “Father Was Killed by the Pinkerton Men.”
A very broad topic (20th Century Labor Movement) used to guide to a very narrow sub-topic (the meaning and origin of the song “Father Was Killed by the Pinkerton Men”).
While celebrating the women who played a critical role in the civil rights movement, the focus is always on Rosa Parks and her fight to end black oppression and white privilege. Coretta Scott King is another celebrated woman. However, they are not the only women who played critical roles. For example, Leah Chase, Dr. June Jackson Christmas, Aileen Hernandez, Diane Nash, Judy Richardson, Kathleen Cleaver, and Gloria Richardson all played critical roles on various fronts.