Write an Essay

You will write an expository essay about either the student movement or the antiwar movement and about the reaction from more traditional sectors of society. You will evaluate the efficacy of the movement.

  1. Research both movements. Use these focus questions to guide your research.

    The following pages contain some useful resources to help you get started. You can and should go beyond these resources in researching your essay.

    1. Why were the students protesting?
    2. What were the goals of each movement?
    3. What reactions did each movement induce in "mainstream" America?
    4. Which goals did the movement succeed in achieving?
    5. What may have been adverse effects of the movement? What was each movement's effect in the political arena, for example, the elections of 1968 and 1972?
  2. Take notes and organize your sources as you move through the research phase. Research the protest movement broadly—the leaders, the issues, the goals, and the methods. Be sure to focus as well on reactions that criticized the protests.

  3. Decide upon which movement to focus on for the expository essay. What were the protesters demanding? How did people argue against them? In what ways did the movement succeed? Were there ways in which it was unsuccessful, and if so, explain.

  4. Review your research and draw conclusions. In your expository essay, summarize the course of the movement. Explain its goals and explain the backlash reaction to it. Be sure to cite your sources correctly and create a Works Cited page.

  5. Conclude the essay with an evaluation of the degree to which the movement was successful and the degree to which it changed society.

  6. Submit the essay as your finished product.