Week 3 – Discussion 1

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Reference the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

Background: When World War I ended in 1918, Americans welcomed what they hoped would be a return to normalcy. The decades that followed, however, are ones which would rarely be described as normal in comparison to what came before or after. After World War I ended and through the 1920s, a struggle ensued within the American nation regarding how best to define the nation’s essential character, as groups like the revived Ku Klux Klan fought a rearguard action to define nationhood solely in terms of white skin and Protestant religion against secularists, Catholics, flappers, “New Negroes,” and others who challenged the traditional order. Immediately thereafter, the New Deal implemented in response to the Great Depression revolutionized the role of the federal government in lives of the American people, in ways that many Americans believed violated the basic tenets of the Constitution—and others believed were not radical enough. Taken together, the decades from 1920 to 1940 may have transformed the American nation more than any other comparable time period.

Required sources:

Primary sources:

Recommended sources:

  • The Twenties in the Films on Demand database.
  • Proletarians of the North: A History of Mexican Industrial Workers in Detroit and the Midwest, 1917-1933.

Pick an event from World War I through the 1920s and a corresponding primary source* that you can use in your Final Paper. Use the Credibility: Critical Thinking video and the Library of Congress primary source analysis tool to help you as you think about the primary source. Explain in at least 250 words 

  • Why you think the event was important and how it relates to your Final Paper topic.
  • What the primary source you chose tells you about this topic.
  • What it does not tell you.

*Note: Remember that a primary source is an artifact or document created at the time of an event or by someone who personally witnessed the event. You may choose a primary source from this list or you may find one on your own. Please view the Ashford Writing Center’s material on primary sources.

Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from the required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Your references and citations must be formatted according to APA style as outlined by the Ashford Writing Center. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ posts by Day 7. Each response should be at least 100 words. 

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