Choose four questions. You may do any of the Recent History questions or Themes, as long as you do a total of four essays. Please write about one and a half pages for each topic you choose and include a picture with each essay and examine your image as a primary source. You can get extra points if you develop your main points especially well with extra writing or extra pictures. You may also do an extra essay.
Recent History. Use specific information from the reading to develop your points.
Pacific Relations. Explain how the US foreign policy has developed in relation to Asian nations in recent times. What key events have shaped the relationship? What can we learn from the experiences of the past fifty years? Discuss at least two Asian countries, such as China and Vietnam. (Chapters 26-29)
Foreign Policy since 1960. Discuss developments in American foreign policy in Chapters 26-29. Focus on America’s relationship with three countries or regions (such as Russia, Southeast Asia, Latin America, or the Middle East). What can learn from these experiences?
Progressivism in the 1970s. Though your book says America moved “to the right” in Chapterw 27 and 28, progressives or “liberals” point to accomplishments in environmental protection, energy conservation, and human rights. In what ways was the 1970s actually a forward-looking era? Do you think President Carter or other leaders might have been ahead of their time? (Ch. 27-28)
Conservatives. Describe some of the policy ideas promoted by conservatives or “the right” from the late 1960s to recent times. How was Ronald Reagan a leader of this movement? How would you assess the long-range impact of the movement? Do you think conservatism has continued to gain ground since the Reagan years? (Chapters 27 and 28 have the information you need.)
Leadership. Which recent presidents, or other types of leaders, do you see having the most positive impact on our country? Using specifics from Chapters 28 or 29, assess the accomplishments of three leaders. What factors made them succeed or fail? Looking at Chapters 28 and 29, what lessons can we learn that will help us choose the best leaders?
Globalization. Based on your reading of Chapter 29, describe how America’s connection to the rest of the world has become increasingly important in the last three decades. In what ways has our country been influenced by world events? In what ways has our country sought to shape world events? Do you think these trends are new or really a continuation of earlier trends?
(See next page for Major Themes)
Major Themes. Use information and insights from various time periods in our course. You may also use information you learned in the unit on California politics.
Government. Explain a few specific ways that the federal government has expanded its role in American life. Consider government programs or initiatives that have impacted our society in a few time periods, including recent times. How has the growth of government affected our lives?
Foreign Policy. Explain how the U.S. became so involved in world affairs. Consider various eras, including recent times. Describe the causes and consequences of involvement in a few specific places. What lessons can we learn from our experiences with the rest of the world? (You could combine this with one of Recent History questions and make it at least three pages.)
Culture. Describe and explain cultural developments in three time periods. You may discuss the influence of immigrant groups, artistic developments, TV, counterculture, or other phenomena that have shaped American culturally. Has our culture changed radically or evolved gradually?
Reform. Describe a few of the major reform movements from the late 1800s to the present. What successes do you see? Discuss reform movements and accomplishments in various time periods, including recent times. What lessons do you see for future reformers?
Women. Discuss events from several time periods to show the changing role of women. How do you see the perspectives of women developing in each era? How do you think women from earlier times would see women today?
Environment. How has our relationship to the natural environment changed in modern America? Examine developments in various chapters, such as agribusiness, urban growth, early conservation efforts, automobiles and consumer culture, the CCC, highways and suburbs, Environmentalism, legislation in the 1970s, and global efforts.
Optional Extra Essay: You can get up to four extra points if you do an extra essay from either list. Please include a picture.