The Boas & Braman Experience


December 2016

IF you’d like to try some extra credit…

you should first realize that Extra Credit in this class is a small reward.  It will not significantly change your grade.  The total point value would be equal to one daily assignment.  You should choose to do Extra Credit because it seems interesting and you have the bandwidth to do it.

All Extra Credit is due via submission to before class on January 3rd.

The Class ID is 14243156 and the password is spartans

The topics you may choose from are also modern topics that will have particular historical relevance in our 2nd Semester curriculum.  They include:

  1. Race relations including Black Lives Matter
  2. The role and responsibility of government 
    1. Should government provide for the poor, homeless, unemployed?
    2. Should the government regulate businesses?
    3. Should the government regulate trading on Wall Street?
  3. International relations
    1. Cuba and the western hemisphere
    2. Relations with China
    3. Relations with Russia
    4. The United Nations

You will need to research the topic and make a policy recommendation to President-elect Trump and his cabinet.  The best analyses will explain the policy position of the incoming President and his cabinet.  Your job is to argue that your policy is best.

Your product may include:

  • a multi-paragraph response centered around your policy recommendation in the historical context of the region or topic
  • a 4-minute or less presentation (ppt or Prezi) to the large group
    • presentations may be linked to other presentations to form a larger topic
  • regardless of whether or not you do written or oral presentation, the expectation is that you will cite the sources of your researched ideas. You will have a works cited. You must create your own ideas for your policy recommendation.

As you prepare…

You might use this list to help you prepare.  Consider it a gift.  If you don’t need it or find it annoying, feel free to ignore it.  Some of the terms below have several components.  Use your assigned readings for further elaboration.  There is no assignment here – I’m just trying to help.

Be sure to consider:

  1. What is a good definition for this term/idea/concept?
  2. What is a good example of it?
  3. What caused it?
  4. What were its effects?
  5. What is similar to/different from it?
  • Taylorism
  • Black Codes
  • Population change post-Civil War
  • Urban population growth post-war
  • Nativism (and immigration)
  • Growth of Big Business
  • Second Industrial Revolution
  • Gilded Age
  • Progressive Era
    • Progressive view of the world
    • Objectives of progressives
    • Motivations of the Progressives
  • Teddy Roosevelt and the New Nationalism
  • Molly McGuires
  • Names and companies of Entrepreneurs
  • The Unions:
    • AFL and its boss
    • Wobblies / IWW
    • Knights of Labor
  • Suffragettes
  • Anarchists
  • Populists
  • Socialists
  • Muckrakers
  • Immigration through Angel, Ellis Island
  • Amendments 13-19
  • Eugene Debs
  • Upton Sinclair
  • Pullman Strike
  • 1902 Coal Strike
  • Homestead Strike
  • Sherman Anti-Trust Act
  • John Spargo
  • Monopolies (and Trusts)
  • Chinese laborers (and exclusion)
  • Socialist economies
  • Laissez-faire economies

After the extension assignment for Monday

This weekend, please consider the ways that the conflicts of the progressive era have continued into the modern day.  Today’s edition of the Seattle Times has many examples of where these issues are permeating modern life and influencing today’s lawmakers and government officials.  Consider issues like these (and find your own examples):

  • income inequality news story – taxes in Portland
  • Trump and organized labor on a collision course – Editorial
  • Millennial disruption to the finance industry – article
  • workers slam Amazon’s newest store – article

Your job is to consider multiple perspectives on modern sources of tension that are a continuation of the conflicts during the progressive era.  These include:

  • the factors disrupting work and working conditions
  • the role of unions and big business
  • the distribution of wealth
  • the role of government regulation

A simple starting place is to look carefully for articles describing the potential nominees for the President-Elect’s cabinet.

Once you find an article, write a brief paragraph comparing the issues raised in the article with the historical issues and historical figures from the progressive era. Your paragraph and article are due on Monday.

IN CLASS Monday, we worked to do the following:

  1. We gathered in groups with similar topics and shared out
  2. We took notes on what others said
  3. We worked to create a strong thesis statement that was topic-specific
    • the factors disrupting work and working conditions
    • the role of unions and big business
    • the distribution of wealth
    • the role of government regulation

    The template – What should the standard be for… ____________?

  4.  We began to plan out our comparative paragraph.  WRITE THIS PARAGRAPH TONIGHT.  IT IS DUE AT THE BEGINNING OF CLASS ON 12/13. The task is to compare modern-day workplace or economic issues to the progressive era.  The finished product should include:
    1. Specific comparisons of the issues of then and now.  Do more than topically compare (there were strikes then; there are strikes now).  Quoted, if possible, examples from the article and from the assigned reading (textbook/articles)
    2. Citations for the work that is referenced
    3. Students’ personal views placed within the context of what others think

Wednesday, December 7

In class today, we discussed the issues introduced in the Zinn chapter 13 in the context of many modern-day concepts.  One example introduced was the disruptive nature of the newest amazon retail store.  Here is a link to its launch.  When we consider the ways that labor and business are changing at the beginning of the 20th century, we should realize that these sorts of change are continuing today.  The disruptive nature of machinery in factories during the 1890’s is as paradigm-altering as the disruptive nature of big data in the modern era.

As we ended class, students were asked to type up and add one historical example to the draft they started in response to this question:

Traditionally, Americans had believed that they could do anything they wished with their property without interference from others or from the government.  During the progressive era, why did many people begin to reconsider their position and welcome some government regulation? 

We will continue to develop these paragraphs in the days to come.


Tuesday Zinn Reading

Is from Chapter 13.  You may read it all by your lonesome (not recommended), or divide the work into parts with other students doing the other portions of the chapter.

Here is a link to the online version of Zinn’s history.

On Tuesday, December 6th, you should walk into class (on time, of course) with your notes outlined so that you can share with your group.  In class on Tuesday, we will share out our portion of the text and  begin a review of the chapter.  Don’t let your group down.  Be prepared.  By the time you’re done taking notes and discussing the chapter with your group members, you should be able to answer rather detailed questions like these

IF we have a quiz on this material, you will be able to use any notes you’ve generated from reading or from listening [this does not apply to unit tests].

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