Past and Present Essay 2

Length: 1,800-2,000 words (6-7 pages)


The goal of this assignment is to create an original piece of writing that analyzes and explains the historical context of Chinas current environmental predicaments. In other words, the essay should relate research on Chinas environmental history to present-day environmental concerns. PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING DIRECTIONS CAREFULLY!


In addition to a least one news article published since 2016, your Past and Present Essay needs to draw upon the lectures, films, and required readings.

You also need to refer to at least two titles from the suggested readings listed in the syllabus that are related to the topic you decide to write about.


Your essay needs to include:

1) A title that captures the topic and main point of your essay. [5 points]

2) An introduction that explains the purpose of the essay and the main issues to be addressed. [10 points]

3) A specific, clear, and argumentative thesis statement in the introduction that explains what you intend to argue in the essay. [10 points]

4) Sections that address the key issues and include accurate, specific evidence, correct citations, and analysis to support your thesis statement. Each section should have its own topic heading.  [15 points]

5) Reference to at least one news article. [10]

6) References to at least two suggested readings. [10]

7) References to relevant lectures, assigned readings, and movies. [10]

8) Clear, grammatical, and accessible writing. [10 points]

9) Cogent and logical organization and structure. [10 points]

10) An effective conclusion that summarizes the reports findings and their significance. [10 points]

[Total: 100 points]


All your references should adhere to the American Historical Review (AHR) citation style. The footnote style used by the AHR generally follows conventions recommended by The Chicago Manual of Style. You do not need to include a bibliography.

      Placement of Notes. A footnote number should come at the end of a sentence or at least at the end of a clause wherever possible. Footnote numbers always follow quoted or cited material; they should not be placed after authors’ names or other references preceding the cited matter.
      Citing Books. The first citation of a book should take the following format:
Gerhard L. Weinberg, A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II (Cambridge, 1994).

Subsequent citations should take the following format: Weinberg, A World at Arms, 132-33.

Note that only the last name of the author is provided in a subsequent reference, along with a shortened version of the title. The publication information is not repeated. The short title should use words in sequence from the main title only.

      Citing Book Chapters/Sections. A book chapter, essay, or book section should take the following format:
John H. Hanson, Islam and African Societies, in Phyllis M. Martin and Patrick O’Meara, eds., Africa, 3rd ed. (Bloomington, Ind., 1995), 97-114.

Subsequent citations should take the following format:

Hanson, Islam and African Societies, 98.

      Citing Class Lectures. If you are citing a class lecture, include your professor’s name, title of the lecture in quotation marks, the course number and name and the location and date.
Allen Seager, “Women and the Church in New France,” History 204: The Social History of Canada (class lecture, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, January 2011).

If you have any questions about how to cite specific types of sources, you can find the answer using the following citation guide.



Please double-space your written assignment, use a standard 12 point font such as Arial or Times New Roman (i.e. not Comic Sans), and submit it on Canvas as a Word document.


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