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Journals are intended to engage students in deeper thought concerning a specific topic and are aligned with the original source readings from The Patriot’s History Reader. The journals for this course are formal in nature and should be organized as miniature essays. They are specifically not to be written in a casual manner or relate simply the feelings of the writer. It is hoped that students will use the journals as opportunities to practice their skill at writing essays.

Each week students are required to write an answer to one of the questions posed. In some of the weeks, students may select a question to answer, while other weeks will only provide a single selection. Journals should be two pages in length, printed using Times New Roman or Times font, 12 point type, and have 1-inch margins. They are not to go over two pages. The length is intended to both help the student not do too much work, and to also hone the student’s writing skills.

  • Question: Issues of slavery had plagued the United States since it became a nation. Read the Dred Scott Decision and Frederick Douglass’ response. What are the fundamental values expressed in each document? Are the fundamental values so different that they could not have been resolved short of civil war?
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