For my humanities class we are to write a 10 page paper starting with an introduction and thesis along with five annotations for scholarly sources.  I am so stuck on what direction to go with...

For my humanities class we are to write a 10 page paper starting with an introduction and thesis along with five annotations for scholarly sources.  I am so stuck on what direction to go with this.  I have been out of class over an extremely long period of time and have ...not a clue... as to where to start.

I have to pick one of the two options to start.......

•Analyze the impact of the Industrial Age and the rise of of capitalism, and discuss the key features of both and their influence on contemporary society

Or

•Investigate the history of slavery and discuss the ways in which this history impacts contemporary society

I am having a hard time figuring out how to use the internet for this and how to structure this to get going.  Any help with direction would be greatly appreciated.

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price7781's profile pic

price7781 | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted on

I’m going to help you with the one topic I know the most about.  I am a black studies teacher, and so I can help you with the slavery topic.  Writing about the history of slavery is a HUGE undertaking—you’re talking about 400 years of history!  I think to successfully link the legacy of slavery to today, you have to focus on the psychological effects of slavery throughout history.   There are also economic, social, physical, and political links you can make to today, but you would need a whole course to tackle all of the long lasting effects of slavery. 

Here’s my suggestion.  Focus on the psychological effects of slavery.  Do some extensive research on the following topics.  I am confident you can plug these key words into a search engine, and you will find a lot of information.  Putting the information together is going to be the key.  You need to think about how slavery could affect the generations of today who were not directly impacted by slavery. 

Key concepts:

  • Collective memory—This is the idea that memory is passed down to generations, and experiences are felt and lived even though you didn’t personally experience it.  For example, the Holocaust is a collective memory for the Jewish people.
  • How to “make” a slave and the emasculation of males.  There are ways to make people submissive enough to become slaves.  It started with the Middle Passage.
  • Black psychology
  • Privilege—See Tim Wise on youtube!  You will learn a lot!
  • Colorism—the phenomena where people of color discriminate against other people of color because of their skin tone.  Blue Vein Society, Paper bag test.  Why and how did this happen?
  • Generational poverty

Historical events to guide you:

  • The Middle Passage
  • Life of a slave on the plantation
  • Jim Crow era
  • The Negro Holocaust and Lynching
  • Migration to the North
  • Civil Rights Movement and Black Power
  • Black Lives Matter!

This is a huge subject to take on, but I am sure you won’t be disappointed in what you learn.  If you find similarities between the concepts and events listed above, I think you will be able to write a good, long paper.  Good luck!

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sherryrandle's profile pic

sherryrandle | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

Thank you sooooo much for taking the time to give me insight as to what direction I should go with this for humanitites.  This should definitely get me going in the right direction.  I will checkout some of the information you supplied.

price7781's profile pic

price7781 | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted on

Here's a link to an article by Marcel Parker that I think will help you!

http://memoirsofanurbangentleman.com/the-psychological-effects-of-slavery-and-colonization-on-the-negro/

 

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