HIST 24000 US History from Its Origins to 1877
Professor Hidetaka Hirota
Grader: Mr. Rory Duffy ([email protected])

Writing Assignment: Short Essay 2
Due Monday, May 1
(Note this date is different from the original deadline listed on the syllabus)
Materials needed:
Eric Foner, ed., Voices of Freedom: A Documentary History, Chapters 11-13 (Documents 65-85).
Excerpt from Solomon Northup, Twelve Years a Slave. (BB)

Instruction: One of the most important issues in nineteenth-century America was the debate over racial slavery. Based on your reading of the primary documents in Voices of Freedom and Northup's autobiography, identify and analyze one theme in the debate over slavery. Make sure that you not only identify a topic but also develop an argument that is supported by textual evidence. Your thesis statement must be presented in the introductory paragraph of your paper. Your essay should be 3 to 4 pages in length and must quote at least 6 documents. DON'T use block quotes in your paper.

As I emphasized in the previous papers, your paper should not be a list of descriptive facts. If your paper simply discusses how the institution of slavery was like, you should probably stop and think about what your argument is. Also, think deeply. Your argument should not be a simple and self-evident one, like "Slavery was evil," "Slaves had hard times," "Slaves challenged the bondage," or "Northerners and southerners had different worldviews." You need to carefully examine the primary sources and provide your original analysis. Mr. Duffy and I will be happy to help you develop your argument.

Double spaced; 12-point font, Times New Roman; Standard 1-inch margins
For citation, put the document number and the page number within parentheses at the end of the sentence. When you quote a document, always mention its author.
Example: Frederick Douglass went so far as to state that "I preferred the condition of the meanest reptile to my own (#65, p. 209)."
You are strictly prohibited from using external sources. Violators will be penalized.

Grading Points
The depth and originality of your analysis
Stylistic sophistication
Late papers are subject to penalties described in the syllabus.

Submission Methods (You must submit your paper in two ways.)
You must hand in a hardcopy of your paper at the beginning of class on May 1. You must attend class to submit your paper. Print out your paper well in advance before class. I won't accept printing problems as an excuse for coming to class late.
In addition, you must submit a WORD file of your paper (file in .doc or .docx) to Blackboard by 9:30am on May 1. Submissions after class starts won't be accepted.
Access the course's Blackboard page, click "Content" on the left bar, and choose "Short Essay 2." Then click "Browse My Computer" and upload your paper. Never forget to click "Submit" to complete submission.
Do not directly type your paper into "Write Submission." Save your paper file on a computer or storage device and upload it to Blackboard. The file name of your paper should be "your last name_your first name." (Example: hirota_hidetaka)