Rebelling Against Britain in the mid-1770s

Directions: Respond to the assignment below. Be as clear and concise as possible with responses. Offer specific arguments to support your opinions, observations, and conclusions. The paper is worth a maximum value of 50 points.

For this writing assignment, choose TWO of the following documents. Do not write about more or less than TWO of the documents. You will be graded on the basis of your analysis of TWO of the documents.

Soame Jenyns, The Objections to the Taxation Consider’d, 1765
Benjamin Franklin, Testimony Before Parliament Regarding The Stamp Act, February 1766
Peter Oliver, Origin and Progress of the American Rebellion: A Tory View, 1781
Patrick Henry, Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death, March 23, 1775
Your assignment is to determine whether (or not) the colonists were justified in rebelling against Britain in the mid-1770s. Use any TWO documents of your choice from the list above as evidence and support for your argument. Closely examine the point of view of the authors in your chosen documents as well as the arguments and evidence they use in support of their point of view.

Be sure to have clear introduction and conclusion paragraphs in your paper. Your introduction paragraph should briefly present the TWO documents you will analyze. Your introduction should indicate that you will be analyzing the documents to demonstrate your claim regarding whether the colonists were (or were not) justified in rebelling against Britain in the mid-1770s. At the end of your introduction paragraph you should provide a thesis statement, which is a statement that gives the reader a specific sense of what your overall conclusion(s) in the paper will be. In this statement, summarize an overall theme about whether the colonists were (or were not) justified in rebelling against Britain. Your thesis statement should present a clear and definitive argument which your writing assignment will demonstrate with evidence from the TWO documents. Your conclusion paragraph should wrap together your points from the paper into some final thoughts that indicate how your major points all connect around a theme. In the process, explain how they reconnect back to the introduction and thesis statement.
Base your paper around showing a series of points about the question of whether the colonists were (or were not) justified in rebelling against Britain that the TWO documents reflect. Present your points clearly and explain them fully, noting how the documents show these points.
Provide specific details from the TWO documents you chose, and clearly explain how these details illustrate your points. Do not simply rely on any discussion offered in the course text or in some other source. While you may refer to ideas in the course text or use them as a starting point, you must build your paper on your own observations from the documents and the conclusions you draw from those observations. Additionally, do not simply quote from the documents. You are being asked for this assignment to develop your own interpretations from what you read when you review the TWO documents you chose. You will not be graded on whether your interpretation is “correct.” Rather, you will be graded on how effectively you state what is reflected in the documents, how effectively you explain how the documents reflect these things, and how effectively you show what specifically about the documents provides the basis for your conclusions.
You may choose any TWO documents. If you choose TWO whose authors all share the same point of view you must simply explain their arguments. Alternatively, you may use two documents whose authors disagree. (In other words, one document could be supportive of the colonists’ rebellion and the other one would be opposed.) In this case, you must make it clear in your thesis which side of the question you come down on. Then, as you analyze the documents you must make sure to use them correctly. Use the document(s) with which you agree to support your argument. For the document(s) with which you disagree, explain why you believe the arguments made are incorrect, mistaken, or even misleading.
When referencing a document specifically, whether in quotation marks or by paraphrasing, cite it appropriately. Also, if you use any other source, including the course text, cite it appropriately. See Step 7 of “General Instructions for Papers” in this lesson for directions on how to cite a source properly. Any Internet source address must be provided in full so that it can be verified. Such a source is not needed nor expected, but if you choose to use one it should be employed sparingly.
Create a fitting, descriptive title for your paper. You can summarize the content to follow in the title or you can devise a clever title connected to what the body of your paper discusses.
The suggested paper length is three to four word-processed pages in Microsoft Word (preferred) or in rich text format (rtf). Microsoft Works is not acceptable. The paper should be double-spaced. Use a non-bolded, readable font in a 12-point size.

Total Score (50 Points Possible)

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