A primary historical source is a document that was created during the past by a person (or persons) who lived during that period. Primary sources are the building blocks of history!
Select any ONE of the below primary sources that interests you and, after reading the source, write an analytical essay in which you summarize the main points of the article (this should take about 2/3 of your essay) and then analyze/critique the source (about 1/3 of your essay).
Try to answer at least some of the following questions in your essay:
Who is the author of your chosen source? What is the time period of the source and what is the topic? What might this article tell a researcher about the time period? What is he/she trying to say? What is his/her point of view? Does he/she make a convincing case? Why or why not? What does the author leave out (if anything)? Does the author exhibit a particular bias? Is there anything in this source that might be relevant to the world today?
Note: Depending on the source you choose, not all of the above questions may be relevant. Answer those which are relevant to your source.
Try to select a document/source that interests you. If it is a topic/person that you are unfamiliar with, be sure to do at least a little research to give you a better background for analyzing the source. If you would like to use additional sources (internet web sites, books, periodicals, etc.,) you are more than welcome to, as long as your focus is on the primary source. Your essay should consist of two sections: a summary of the article and then an analysis of the article.
In writing your essay, you should follow the below guidelines:
Your essay should be a MINIMUM of 800 words (it can be longer if you like).
Your completed essay should consist of a summary (about 2/3 of your essay) and an analysis (roughly 1/3 of your essay).
All persons, events, concepts in your paper should be introduced/explained clearly…in other words, write your essay as if your audience was another student!
Your essay should follow the basic style guidelines of MLA, APA or Chicago (your choice).
Your essay should have a cover page and bibliography page in the style you have chosen (these pages do NOT count towards the essay length).
Your essay should be double-spaced with #12 fonts and 1-inch margins.
The essay needs to be written entirely in your own words. Use quotes very sparingly and only to highlight a point you are trying to make. Quoted material does NOT count towards the length of your essay.
Your essay needs to be neatly written and grammatically correct (points will be deducted for sloppy papers).