History 1302 Essay 1

    July 12, 2023

History 1302 Essay 1

Question: In an era of reconstruction and expansion from the time after the Civil War through the early 1900s, many Americans ď»żď»żexperienced a tremendous expansion of opportunities, while others saw their freedoms severely limited. 

How did â€śrace” shape the experiences of African Americans, immigrants, and indigenous people? How was the language and practice of white supremacy embedded in the emergence of Jim Crow, American expansion (at home and abroad), and immigration policies? 

Your essay should use MANY, SPECIFIC historical examples (arguments, people, documents, events) to illustrate your points – and to prove that you have read the textbook and all the primary sources and viewed the films.) Your essay should have a clear thesis, be supported by specific evidence, and be well organized. Use direct quotes sparingly, or not at all. Use examples from ALL the week’s assigned texts to construct a full, detailed answer to the questions:

* Dr. Robinson’s recorded video lectures

* American Yawp, ch. 15, 17, 19

* Primary Sources on Blackboard


Your essay should be typed, double-spaced, have 1-inch margins, and have an 11-12-point font. It does not need a cover page or bibliography. It must be submitted as a .doc/x or .pdf file. I suggest writing about 900 words (or three full pages).

Citation requirements for short answers and essays

When you are incorporating the ideas of others, you must use citations. When you are directly quoting the words of others, you must use quotation marks AND citations with page numbers. A bibliography at the end does not fulfill this requirement, and it is not required. Use in-text citations, such as:

  • (American Yawp, Ch. 16)
  • (Blackboard, “Aguinaldo on American Imperialism”)
  • (Dr. Robinson, Video Lecture, “From the Gilded Age to the Progressive Era”) 

What not to do

Do NOT use sources from outside of this class (i.e. internet, library books) While I encourage you to review your discussion posts as study guides, you may not copy any part of them. You will receive an F if you do. Using anyone else’s ideas without crediting them is plagiarism – and will result in failure of the assignment (or worse).

Below is a writing sample, so you can see an example of correct citations and formatting.

The period of World War II once again raised many racial tensions and demands for equal rights from minorities. Many Americans of color who had fought valiantly during World War I, returned home to a country that still did not grant them equal rights as their white counterparts.

The country was still very divided from the many wars the U.S. had been part of, including the Spanish American War and World War I (American Yawp, ch. 19 and 21). In order to unite and gain support for the World War II, Roosevelt described the “Four Freedoms” they were fighting for. Although this form of propaganda did help in uniting the American public, we still see a lot of opposition from many. Many Japanese Americans and those of Japanese descent refused to cooperate with the draft (American Yawp, ch. 24). I believe that their refusal to cooperate was well warranted considering the amount of discrimination they were facing and the incarceration their families were facing while they were fighting the war. Masao Takahashi’s first-hand experience going through the internment camps showed a very horrible part of American History. Being separated from his family and subjected to horrible living conditions was just one of the many stories that was experienced by thousands of Japanese Americans during that period (Blackboard, Takahashi Describes Incarceration). Opposition of the war and demands for equal freedoms did not stop with Japanese Americans.

These views were also expressed by Mexican Americans, African Americans, and many other minorities. After World War II, many Mexican Americans began addressing the unequal treatment and need for equal rights more aggressively through newsletters. I think it’s very unfair that Mexican Americans who fought valiantly for this country in the name of democracy were treated so poorly. The discrimination was viewed by some as ignorance of what Mexican Americans stood for and their unconditional loyalty to this country (Blackboard, LULAC, “WWII and Mexican Americans”). The disenfranchisement of many Mexican Americans led to many racial tensions and territorial boundaries that often resulted in harmful action between Mexican Americans and U.S. sailors. The Zoot Suit Riots clearly point to the tension and frustration by those feeling mistreated finally reached a peaking level after the death of Mexican American youth (Blackboard, Zoot Suit Riots film).

The African American community felt intense frustration, as well, during this War period. After years of service and fighting in two major global wars and many other smaller wars, it seems ridiculous that African Americans were still being denied basic equal rights. We can see that African Americans are fighting for what they call the “Double V” – a victory over Japan and Germany abroad and victory over racism at home (Dr. Robinson’s lecture on WWII). Roosevelt’s “Four Freedoms” that US troops were supposedly fighting for omitted minorities, and especially African Americans. Countless of examples show how African Americans do not benefit from any of the “Four Freedoms” the war promised, such as inferior and segregated schooling and remaining marginal workers (Blackboard, “African Americans and Four Freedoms”).

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