Document Analysis

The purpose of the “Document Analysis” assignments is to help you to practice making evidence based arguments about history. There is a brief introduction to each prompt. Chose a topic that interests you. Take time to carefully study each of the sources given, keeping in mind what you might want to argue and sources that support your argument. Then write. The document analysis should be between 2-3 pages, typed and double spaced. There is no need to include a title page or section for your name and class information since Canvas keeps track of that. Focus your analysis on the content, which needs to include a clear thesis statement, evidence and facts that support the thesis, proper citation and a conclusion that summarizes your argument.

Answer only one question from one of the prompts. Be sure to type the question you are answering above your response. The first paragraph should clearly state your position and 2-3 points you intend to discuss as support for your position. The paragraphs that follow should be a discussion of your main points and should include an analysis (an explanation of how and why these points support your position) of the facts and referencing of the sources. Be sure to cite your references, from the prompt and the course text, within your your document (not at the end). The last paragraph (the conclusion) should be a summation of the points that support your position.

Be sure to see the rubric below for grading details.

Prompt 1

One of the most notable movements of the 1920’s was the rise of the “Nativist Movement” which was mainly anti-immigrant and led to a series of acts that restricted immigration. The first document is an analysis of the Dillingham Commission Report which outlined which immigrants were most desirable and those that should not be permitted to enter the country. The remaining documents are the Immigration Act of 1924 and a reactions to this type of restrictive legislation. As you read the documents consider how they played a role in the rise of racism in America.

“Boundaries of Restriction: The Dillingham Commission 1994; John Lund (Links to an external site.)”

“Immigration Restriction Act of 1924 (Links to an external site.)”

“Immigration Restriction 1928; John Box (Links to an external site.)”

“Immigration Restriction 1929; Ernesto Galarza (Links to an external site.)”

  1. Did the findings of the Dillingham Commission influence the stipulations of the Immigration Restriction Act of 1924? If so what is the evidence?
  2. Who presents the better argument regarding Mexican immigration; Box or Galarza? Present evidence from the documents and text if applicable.

Prompt 2

American entry into World War I reversed the long-standing, unofficial policy of political isolationism espoused by George Washington. The first document is Woodrow Wilson’s War Address and the second is an anti-war speech delivered by Robert La Follette. As you view the speeches determine what is the point of view of each speaker and the validity of their argument.

“Woodrow Wilson War Message 1917 (Links to an external site.)”

“Anti-War Speech 1917, Rober La Follette (Links to an external site.)”

  1. Outline Wilson’s case for the war against Germany. Are his points valid and what is the evidence?
  2. How does La Follette counter Wilson’s position and is his argument valid? If so, what is the evidence?

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