HIS 247 Paper Project
Overview: For our classs research paper this semester, you will examine the process of decolonization in a specific country of your own choosing over the course of the twentieth century. This will mean researching and summarizing the history of that country with regards to decolonization/independence in the twentieth century and also evaluating how accurate the general narrative I have presented for our class (the world strikes back, using a combination of adapted European innovations and its own particular cultures and traditions) is for your particular countryor even whether that narrative applies at all! Youll need to combine, therefore, good, detailed information drawn from sources mostly beyond our textbook (you can use the textbook but youll definitely need a couple others as well) with an understanding of our class narrative, clear organization, and some of your own analytical thinking.
Your paper will need to be submitted in both hard and electronic copy, number between 1700 and 2400 words, use normal margins, Times New Roman font, black ink, double-spacing, and Chicago notes/bibliography style citations of at least three published sources. We will go over what all this means/how to do it, and in general have at least 1-2 classes with significant time devoted to the nuts and bolts of how to research and write.
The paper-writing process will be broken into several distinct assignments/grades, including outlines, drafts, and re-writes. This will help you manage your time and, probably more importantly, give you feedback throughout the process that should make it a more instructive one.
By far the most common problems with essays are 1) organization and 2) details. For organization, make sure your paragraphs are each well-organized around one clear idea, and that they come in a logical order that helps illuminate your points. As for detail, provide as many specifics about people, places, organizations, things, etc., as possible. When and where did each exist/act? Specifically what individuals, groups, ideas, organizations, resources, etc., were involved in colonization and decolonization. For decolonization, what ideologies did the leaders of independence movements invoke? How did they come into contact with or develop those ideologies, etc.?