Spring Semester 2013: Essay Questions and Readings

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Please submit TWO copies of your paper: one hard copy and one electronic copy by the deadline. Submission of the electronic copy without the hard copy will count as no submission; similarly, submission of a hard copy with no electronic copy, will count as no submission. Essays can be submitted at the Honors Program Office at 109 Harry Johns Hall; email copies should be sent to jdunbar@centralstate.edu

Please choose ONE essay to answer from this section. Answers must be 2,000 words of typed scrip in Arial font. Page numbers (in parenthesis) should be given for all direct quotes from text and plot summaries.

1. Discuss how race and class intersect in the novel to define boundaries between social groups in Manchester County?

2. To what extent can the social dynamics explored in this novel act as a metaphor for contemporary American culture?

3. Explore the theme of ‘power’ in the relationships between the following male protagonists: 1) William Robbins, Henry Townsend, and Augustus Townsend; (2) Moses and Elias; or, (3) John Skiffington, Oden Peoples, Barnum Kinsey, and Harvey Travis.

4. How did slavery affect black and white self-perceptions?

Please choose one essay from this section to answer. Answers must be 3,000 words of typed script in Arial font. Citations must be in Chicago style format (see HALLIE if unsure). Works cited page required.

Aside from the course texts, From Slavery to Freedom, and The Atlas of African American History and Politics, you should use a Minimum of THREE written sources from the list below in constructing your answer. You are free to use books and/or journal articles not listed here; however, please note that websites are not considered legitimate sources and use of such in your essay will be penalized

1. Explain how the actions of African Americans damaged the institution of slavery and ultimately led to its demise.

Frederick Douglas, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas (Dover Thrift ed., 1995)

Richard Hart, Slaves Who Abolished Slavery: Blacks in Rebellion, 1985 Martha B. Katz-Hyman, Kym S. Rice World of a Slave 2 Volume Set: Encyclopedia of the Material Life of Slaves ...

Ira Berlin, Marc Favreau and Steven F. Miller, Remembering Slavery: African Americans Talk About Their Personal Experiences of Slavery and Emancipation (2007)

Edmund S. Morgan, American Slavery, American Freedom (2003)

Mason Lowance, et al., Against Slavery: An Abolitionist Reader (Penguin Classics) (2000)

Brian Dirck, “Changing Perspectives on Lincoln, Race, and Slavery,” OAH Magazine of History, Vol. 21, No. 4, Lincoln, Race, and Slavery (Oct., 2007), pp. 9-12

2. In what ways has urbanization influenced the development of black cultural art forms in the twentieth century?

Brian E. Alnutt,"The Negro Excursions": Recreational Outings among Philadelphia African Americans, 1876-1926 The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. 129, No. 1 (Jan., 2005), pp. 73-104

Frances Richardson Keller, “The Harlem Literary Renaissance” The North American Review, Vol. 253, No. 3 (May - Jun., 1968), pp. 29-34

Sidney H. Bremer, “Home in Harlem, New York: Lessons from the Harlem Renaissance Writers” PMLA, Vol. 105, No. 1, Special Topic: African and African American Literature (Jan., 1990), pp. 47-56

Clare Corbould, “Streets, Sounds and Identity in Interwar Harlem,” Journal of Social History, Vol. 40, No. 4 (Summer, 2007), pp. 859-894

Kevin Mattson, “The Struggle for an Urban Democratic Public: Harlem in the 1920s”, New York History, Vol. 76, No. 3 (JULY 1995), pp. 291-318

Eileen Southern, The Music of Black Americans: A History (1971)  
Burton William Peretti, Lift Every Voice: The History of African American Music (2009)

Guthrie P. Ramsey, Race Music: Black Cultures from Bebop to Hip-Hop (2004)  
Maureen Mahon, Black like This: Race, Generation, and Rock in...
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