John Hope Franklin & Loren Schweninger, In Search of the Promised Land: A Slave Family in the Old South
Do not use or consult any other materials, including any websites.
Your analysis must specifically answer each of the following questions:
How did the Thomas-Rapier family complicate definitions of black and white, along with slavery and freedom?
How were the boundaries between slavery and freedom enforced?
What were the experiences of the Thomas-Rapier family in non-slave states compared to slave states?
What were the experiences of the Thomas-Rapier family in the Americas (outside the United States) as a whole?
Your analysis should have an introduction paragraph that briefly places the antebellum era in historical context and ends with a thesis statement consisting of one to three sentences that coherently and succinctly provides your answers to the required questions. Rephrasing the required questions is not a thesis statement. I am requiring you to go a step further and incorporate your answers to the required questions in a way that encapsulates your analysis.
Well-structured body paragraphs that concisely answer the questions in more detail with sophistication and nuance should follow, with your analysis ending in a conclusion paragraph that recaps your thesis. Your work must include examples from the sources to analyze. You are welcome to make broad statements (e.g., “Enslaved black people were exploited in the antebellum South…”), but you must cite specific examples from the sources as evidence. You are encouraged to include information from class lectures and other required readings when relevant. On the whole, a solid paper displays critical thinking through creative analysis that interrogates the sources and uses the knowledge gained from our course.
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