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Ethnicity, Nationalism and Conflict in the Early 20th Century, by David DeNaples


Guide Entry to 02.03.04:

The purpose of this unit is to find what role ethnic identity and nationalism have played in the conflicts of the 20th century.

"Ethnicity, Nationalism and Conflict in the Early 20th Century" is to be used in a course entitled Modern World History. This course will be offered at Wilbur Cross High School to college bound students in the eleventh and twelfth grades. Although this unit was written to teach college and honors level students, with the appropriate modifications it can be used in any World Civilizations course taught at any level.

To understand the potential civilizational fault lines of this new century a student of history must: know the ethnic composition of the last century; comprehend the fundamental differences of those groups; analyze what role identity (ethnic or national) has played in the century's major wars and what effects those wars have had on conflicts of today.

The primary teaching method of this unit will be lecture/discussion, with analysis of primary and various secondary documents. Some primary documents will include eyewitness accounts of the horrors of the Balkan wars and WWI. The class will analyze such secondary sources as a standard history textbook, but also Armenian poetry and the classic film Lawrence of Arabia.

The assessment will consist of three exams and an essay. My goal is to model this class closely to an undergraduate college class in order to prepare the students for what they are about to face in an actual college history course.

(Recommended for World History, grade 11, Western Civilization, grade 9, and Global Studies, grades 9-12.)

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