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HIS 122: World Civilization II: Home

This guide will serve as a resource to students in Dr. Cieglo's World Civilization II course who are researching World War I.

World Civilization II

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Primary Sources vs. Secondary Sources

Princeton University Library explains the difference between primary sources and secondary sources here.

Examples of primary sources:

  • Diaries
  • speeches
  • manuscripts
  • letters
  • interviews
  • news film footage
  • autobiographies

Examples of secondary sources:

  • textbooks
  • magazine articles
  • histories
  • criticisms
  • commentaries
  • encyclopedias


Primary source - "Diary of Anne Frank"

Secondary source - A books about the effects of World War I

Writing Assignment


World Civilization II

Professor Cieglo

Spring 2018


Writing Assignment: The First World War and Global History

The Assignment:

Using primary and secondary source readings, answer ONE of the questions listed on the second page of this document in a 3-4 page paper.

In your paper, you must use and cite at least:

  • One primary source from The First World War: A Brief History with Documents or from class handouts
  • One (or more) academic secondary sources that are NOT part of the assigned class readings (although you are encouraged to use and cite the assigned class readings as well!)



Additional Guidelines:

  • Your paper should be at least 3 FULL pages, not including the works cited page. The paper should be double spaced, in a 12-point font, and use one-inch margins.
  • It is fine to use more than one academic secondary source as well as your text-book, but all sources must be cited in MLA format.
  •  You must cite ALL  sources (including textbook and lectures) in MLA format in-text and with a works cited page. For MLA citation format, Purdue University has created a good online resource at: http://owl.english.purdue. edu/owl/resource/747/01/.
  • All papers that contain instances of academic dishonesty will receive an automatic “0” (F.) Academically dishonest practices include, but are not limited to: copying or using the work of others (either word for word or summarized) without proper citation, falsifying page numbers and names in your citations, or not including page numbers or author names in your citations.
  • The organization of your paper should follow standard essay format, including an introductory paragraph with a thesis statement, body paragraphs with clear topic sentences, properly cited evidence with analysis, and a conclusion.


Pick ONE of the following research questions to answer in your paper (see the first page of this document for a full explanation of the requirements for the paper):

Question 1

How did changes in technology and military strategy influence the experience of those serving on the battlefronts during the First World War?

Question 2

How did the experience of fighting in the First World War influence how soldiers from colonial territories viewed colonial governments after returning home? In what ways did the First World War influence anti-colonial movements?

Question 3

How did the experience of the First World War both on battle-fronts and home-fronts influence how minority groups in the United States viewed their society and government after the war ended? In what ways did the First World War influence movements for equality in the U.S.?

NOTE: You can either focus on a single minority group in the U.S., such as Native-Americans, African-Americans, or Hispanic-Americans, or look at examples from a range of groups.

Question 4

What role did propaganda play in the First World War and why was it so important to countries’ war efforts?

Question 5

In what ways were women involved in the war during World War I? What changes in women’s political and/or social status resulted from the First World War?

Question 6

What was the meaning of “Shell Shock” as used by doctors and intellectuals in the new field of psychology during and after WWI? What types of treatments did they use or recommend for “Shell Shock”?

Question 7

What does post-war artistic culture (including literature, visual arts, film, and music) reveal about the legacies of the First World War and its impact on the societies involved in it?

NOTE: “Post-war” refers to the period between the end of World War I and the beginning of World War II. You may include examples from a number of countries or focus specifically on the artistic culture of one country or region. You may also focus on specific artistic media.