Wednesday, November 26, 2014

To Kill a Mockingbird Research Questions

Research question for To Kill a Mockingbird 

What gender and what ages are the most racist?

How can we see racial division in society now and back then?

Are there any laws against racism/ racial injustice?

What role does education take for a person to be racist?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Internal and External Factors of English Colonies in America

It is a given that the American Colonies we have studied are very different, and this is due to the people who colonized the land, the geographical conditions, and the way the settlers interacted with the natives that already lived in the land. This means that both internal and external factors are intertwined, making each colony very different from each other, however, the external factors have a greater impact.

We have geographical positions, one of the most important external factors. For starters, the colony of Massachusetts New England is located to the north, which means the climate is the coldest from all the three colonies. These conditions didn't allow the land to grow cash crops that the colonists could base off their economy from, which is why they turned to trading and commerce as an income base.

The Middle colonies, consisting of  Pennsylvania and Maryland had a mild climate, which allowed the settlers to grow crops, but a big part of the income also consisted of trading, which makes the colony's economy more sustainable.
Lastly, we have the Southern colonies, known as Virginia and Georgia. The English men who came to this land expecting to find gold. However, when they realized there was none, the climate, being very warm, allowed to grow cash crops. Their economy consisted mainly on tobacco, and this affected the colony greatly because it was the first one to bring African slaves to work on the plantations.

Another external factor that really shaped the development of the colonies was the interaction with the Native Americans. The colony of New England was a colony composed by Puritans. They wanted to create a model society, a "city upon a hill". Because of this they weren't tolerant to other religions or races, which is why they went through many bloody conflicts with the Pequots and the Iroquois. For the Southern Colonies it was pretty violent as well, because the Virginians fought against the Powhatans for land. As for the Middle Colonies, the whole interactions with the Indians was much more peaceful. Pennsylvania was founded by William Penn, a Quaker who was seeking religious freedom. It is because of this that he was tolerant to all religions, and he believed that the land had to be brought from the Indians, which is why both groups of inhabitants were able to coexist peacefully.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Portrayal of Pocahontas Analysis

During the past few Social Studies classes we have been analysing 12 different representations of Pocahontas' appearance and what is signified to the Powhatan and English civilizations. This has helped us by teaching us how to deal with different types of sources (primary and secondary), and has also contributed to our learning of English colonization in the New World. I believe that the most accurate out of all the documents is the work of Simon van de Passe.

Van de Passe's portrait is the most accurate because it was drawn in 1616, making it a primary source because it was during the time that Pocahontas lived, leading us to believe that he was actually the only one of the artists that actually met her. We compared his work to the one of Ellen Howe, and saw corroborating evidence, adding to its reliability. Howe's work is a compilation of facts and research about Pocahontas put together into one painting, which makes it the second most reliable source. We chose van de Passe's work however, because he actually met, her while Howe was just basing her portrait on works and creations of other people. It is undeniable to say that his work is not biased nonetheless, his goal being to show how and indigenous women could convert into and english lifestyle. However, the objective of this activity was to find out what Pocahontas looked like, her facial features and everything, and that is what stand outs the most of this portrait. It shows common characteristics that the Powhatans possesed, like an overbite for example.

It was thanks to the OVPL that my partner and I were able to come to this conclusion. It's a process in which we can compare the pros and cons of all the representations of Pocahontas, allowing us to come to a more precise conclusion more efficiently.