Primary Source Analysis – What Are Primary Sources

Subject: General Questions / General General Questions

Primary Source Analysis for this question , How does the 13th amendment affect African Americans in 2017 in reference to the industrial prison complex of the United States of America( this is the topic)


Primary Source Analysis (15% of final grade)


OK, so what is a primary source? It can be defined as anything created by someone involved in an event, about the event. For example, it could be a diary or a picture. These are the raw bits of history and we use them to understand the people and events under study. Here are resources to help you prepare for this assignment:

What Are Primary Sources?

Library of Congress: Teaching with Primary Sources (video and transcript) – definition of primary and secondary sources and why use primary sources
Library of Congress: Why Use Primary Sources
Finding Primary Sources

Library of Congress: Finding Primary Sources
National Archives: Finding Primary Sources
How to Cite Primary Sources

Library of Congress: Citing Primary Sources – Chicago style
How do I Analyze Primary Sources?

Library of Congress: Analyzing a Primary Source (video and transcript)
National Archives: Primary Source Analysis Worksheets – The National Archives has created analysis worksheets to help you work with primary sources. Copies of these worksheets are provided as attachments in the Primary Source Analysis assignment and also in Course Resources (under Content) The worksheets consist of a combination of checklists and short-answer questions that will help you focus on the most important elements of many different types of historical documents. You will need the worksheets to complete the Primary Source Analysis assignment.
Primary Source Analysis Instructions

Find two (2) primary sources (any type for which there is an analysis worksheet) on your chosen topic. There are a number of web sites such as those of the Library of Congress and the National Archives that contain digitized copies of primary sources that you may use. Please use copies of the primary source – not a transcription – you want to see it as it looked when created/used.

For each primary source you find, create a separate entry that includes all of the following information:

The type of primary source (e.g. written document, cartoon, photograph, and so on).
Complete the worksheet in detail.
Write a narrative analysis of the primary source, using the information you collected on the worksheet
Explain how the item pertains to your topic
Create a bibliographic entry (as you would include it in your bibliography) for the primary source – in Chicago Humanities style
Submit your work as a Word doc attachment via the assignment folder in Week 5 (under Content) or under Assignments (on the NavBar).

The following course outcomes apply to this assignments:

locate, organize, evaluate, and use primary and secondary sources to describe U.S. historical events
bring a logical and informed U.S. historical perspective to discussions of potentially controversial issues related to diversity

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