- Using Loosing The Bonds by Robert Klinoch Massie and Race for Sanctions: African Americans Against Apartheid, 1946-1994 by Francis Njubi Nesbitt and two book reviews of each monograph write a historiography essay. For Massie’s book the two reviews to use are Paul B. Rich’s in The International Journal of African Historical Studies and J.H. Taylor’s in International Journal (Both found on JSTOR). For Nesbitt’s book the two book reviews to use are Robert Vinsons in the Journal of American History and Eunice A. Charles’ in The International Journal of African Historical Studies (Both found on JSTOR).
- Write a historiographic essay of five (5) pages comparing and contrasting the two works. Analyze the author’s interpretations of, and contributions to, knowledge of your topic. Consider the scholarly reception found in the book reviews. Provide your own insights based on what you know. Include reasons why you think as you do. Use brief quotes to back up your points.
- When analyzing each monograph describe and evaluate:
- its content, essentially what it covers
- its thesis, interpretation, or approach
- the primary sources used as evidence
- the effectiveness of the author’s argument and the use of evidence to support it
- how the author addresses counter evidence
- any relevant details about the author’s affiliation, position, specialty, or previous scholarship
- importance of the monograph to the scholarship on the topic
- This is a comparative essay. It is not two book reviews pieced together. Try to create a context for your analysis, a way to characterize the works collectively if possible. Is there some change over time, or a departure from a standard view? Is there a trend in the scholarship, a school of thought, or a reaction to previous claims? What are key similarities or differences? Is there an unsettled debate?
- Based upon the new knowledge you have gained, close your essay with interpretive/theoretical questions you might want to explore as your research continues.
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