Start by reading the two assigned documents:
- 1) Day of Reckoning
- 2) My Whole Soul Is In It
Your focus for this essay is to explore matters of social justice prior to 1876. As you read, keep in mind that our nation was founded on the idea that all persons have rights to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (see the excerpt of the Declaration of Independence on the last page). How can events in our nation’s past inform us about the processes of moving causes of social justice forward to ensure these rights for all people? What particular social issues were important to people at different periods of our history? What did they do to try to effect change? How long did it take? What were the challenges/hurdles? Were there setbacks? What can we learn? How can we use those lessons today? Choose a particular topic that interests you and develop a statement* that you can support with credible source materials.
*This statement must “take a position.” It must be an argument that you can use as the thesis for this writing assignment.
If you need more detailed help in understanding what a Critical Thinking Essay is and how to write one, this website is an excellent source of information: “How to Write a Critical Thinking Essay: A Complete Guide.”
Potential Topic Parameters: the circumstances of replacing the Articles of Confederation with a new Constitution for the United States of America, the election of George Washington as the first President of the United States of America, and/or the installation of the first President of the United States of America. This is not an exhaustive list, it is merely intended as a “jumping off” point to help you see possible topic options. You may select a topic inspired by some other element of the assigned readings that is significantly different than those mentioned here.