The Creation of the Modern World and Your Hometown

The Creation of the Modern World and Your Hometown

We have spent (or will spend) the last several weeks tracing the development of some of the changes which helped create the modern world, and the big historical themes with which these changes are associated. These changes included the expansion of (1) European trade, (2) the liberal revolutions and the ascendency of the bourgeoisie, (3) the industrial revolution and the end of agrarian societies, (4) nationalism and the creation of nation-states, (5) imperialism and incorporation of the rest of the world into the European/American capitalist economy, (6) the world wars and the alternative models to capitalism (socialism and fascism), and (7) the process decolonization and globalization.

In this paper, I want you to examine how these changes are reflected in your own hometown. What is your hometown, and where is it located? What sort of city/town/village is it? Was it created alongside the creation of the modern world, or did your home town exist in the agrarian era (be careful here, make sure you are clear about this one). Did the industrial revolution impact your town? Did imperialism? Is the material culture of the industrial revolution, or the liberal revolutions, or nationalism evident in your home town? Are conceptions such as Liberty, Equality, Fraternity (the motto of the French Revolution) recognizable in the day-to-day life of your home? Are some aspects of the modern world controversial in your home town?


Consider these questions in a 3-6 page paper. You must address at least 3 of the 7 different themes I listed in the first paragraph above. Of course you may discuss the impact these ideas have had, or the lack of an impact in your hometown, but be thoughtful. The assignment is asking you to look at these issues in a setting familiar to you, and consider how your own environment has been shaped by world history. You may use any sources you like, including materials from our class, books and articles, and even internet sources, but you MUST CITE any and all sources using Chicago style citations (footnotes). Failure to do so, and any plagiarism, will result in a serious loss of points at the very least. Finally, you must address these big historical themes in the terms in which we have discussed and defined them in this class. If you are uncertain about how we have defined these themes in our class, see me before you try to write about it. Papers must be thoroughly proof-read! Papers are due, both via online submission here and as a STAPLED paper copy in class on Tuesday, 4/26.


Papers should be 3-6 pages, double-spaced, written in a normal (Times New Roman or similar– no Arial or Lucida, I know the tricks), 12 point font. Normal 1-inch margins all around. There is no need for a title page, or extensive headings; just your name, your section, and a brief title is all you need.

Any other material you use must be cited. Papers should also include a bibliography/works-cited page (which is not part of the 3-6 pages of the assignment). History uses the Chicago Style, and so shall we in this class. A link to the Chicago style guide is provided below. We will address the specifics of citations and formatting next week in class.

and I’m from Saudi Arabia from Jeddah city, that is my hometown.

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