Continuity and Change Over Time Essay
are able to choose to draw their evidence from a case that they know better.
The continuity and change-over-time essay questions require students to demonstrate their mastery of this historical thinking skill. Moreover, students are expected to construct an argument that responds directly to the question; doing so should cause them to use several of the other historical thinking skills (argumentation, causation, contextualization, and
Our CCOT workshop:
In our CCOT Workshop:
Youth culture is directly connected to popular music and this interrelation is evident in the example of 'Dani California', by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who portray the evolution of popular music from the age of Elvis to modern rock and show that though the superfluous aspects of appearance, presentation and performance change to match the conditions of the time and demands of youth; ultimately it is still music which represents the youth of society.
This is a very long thesis and it may be broken up into shorter sentences - but what is key is that it meets all of the requirements of a thesis. For those of you that are trying to figure out how to write your thesis - do not fret if it becomes two sentences as long as you are making sure that you are meeting the requirements of change, continuity, why and example.
A helpful worksheet for use when doing CCOT:
Possible Thesis for the Essay Prompt
One student wrote a Free Response outline that was very good & other than a few minor revisions this is the student's submission:
Gender Roles in India and China diminished the value of women from 8000BCE to 600CE because of advancements in technology and economy added complexity to the society which made the already patriarchal structure increasingly more confining for women and as time went on women lost more and more rights.
Topic Sentences in this outline
Male dominance was consistent throughout the period and women were expected to obey their fathers, husbands and eventually sons in both China and India
Increased trade created a class that valued poperty and did not value most women's contributions thus women's rights were limited and in India and China women were unable to inherit land or have legal standing in court
Women's roles in India were even more severe as rural communities had an expectation of 'sati' which is a practice where widows are expected to join their husband on his funeral pyre while he is cremated, this further shows the devaluing of women as they are to be discarded if there is not a male who will provide for them.
As the role of women worsened, the appeal of Buddhism grew in India and especially China since it provided a measure of freedom for some women from male domination.
Black and White - to - Color
Film style: grainy, to psychadelic, concert footage to music video style
Hairstyles, clothing, overall appearance
Change from dynamic dancing to melancholy candle-lit
Approachable to threatening (some of the punk or metal looking bands?)
Members of the band remained and played the same basic roles
Musical performance was not changed
Example provided by the College Board
The time allotted for this essay is 40 minutes, 5 minutes of which should be spent planning and/or outlining the answer.
Directions: You are to answer the following question. You should spend 5 minutes organizing or outlining your essay. Write an essay that:
• Has a relevant thesis and supports that thesis with appropriate historical evidence.
• Addresses all parts of the question.
• Uses world historical context to show continuities and changes over time.
• Analyzes the process of continuity and change over time.
Analyze continuities and changes in cultural beliefs and practices in ONE of the following regions from 1450 to the present.
• Sub-Saharan Africa
• Latin America/Caribbean
What should be found in a good response?
A good response analyzes continuities and changes in cultural beliefs and practices in one of the stipulated regions [Sub-Saharan Africa or Latin America/Caribbean]. “Cultural beliefs and practices” is understood very broadly in world history to include religion, philosophy, ideology, science and technology, education, the arts, literature, and architecture. Students do not have to address the entire region, but all examples they provide must fall within the stipulated region. Because the central task in this question calls for analysis of continuity and change, acceptable thesis statements need to address both, stating at least one continuity and at least one change. Acceptable thesis statements also need to be explicit, not simply restatements of the question or vague statements such as “there were more changes than continuities.” They also need to be relevant to the time period, beginning in roughly 1450 and ending sometime in the post–World
War II twentieth century.
A good response provides analysis of valid continuities and changes in cultural beliefs and practices, supported by specific pieces of evidence from within the time period, which provide supporting examples of continuity or change. For example, in terms of continuities, students could point to the continuation of the practice of indigenous religions in either area and also to the continuation of the spread of Christianity in either area or of the spread of Islam in Africa; the ways in which migrants continued their cultures in new environments; the ways in which culture was used by all types of leaders to support political systems; the ways in which language, religion, and social customs provided a sense of identification. In terms of change, for the sixteenth and the seventeenth centuries, students could examine the development of syncretic forms of religion such as vodun or the cult of the saints, or the way in which the Spanish and Portuguese rulers of Latin America used art and architecture to legitimate their power. For the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, they could discuss the spread of Enlightenment thought in Latin America and the consequences of this; the impact of new racial ideologies, such as Social Darwinism, in Africa; the development of millenarian ideas such as the Xhosa Cattle-Killing Movement; the spread of anti-imperial, nationalist, and communist ideology in either area. For the twentieth century, students could examine the spread of the idea of human rights; the formation of new cultural identities, such as negritude; the ways religion was applied to political issues, such as fundamentalist movements and Liberation Theology; the increasing globalization of consumer culture. Any of these examples would need to be tied into the process of change and continuity, as would any background information that students provide to set up their essays.
A good essay moves beyond a mechanistic “beginning, middle, and end” format and provides solid chronological knowledge across the entire time period. Further, students should think about including dates in their essay to demonstrate that they have the ability to describe with some precision when continuity and change happened. Solid historical analysis explains the reason for or the impact of a specific continuity or a particular change, and a good essay provides specific discussion of cause and impact. For example, the statement “Nationalism grew in Africa in the twentieth century” is a solid piece of evidence about change, but tying this to a cause or effect would generate this superior analysis: “Nationalism grew in Africa, which led to the overthrow of European empires.”
An essay that effectively addresses world historical context might describe an extra-regional connection or a global process to explain continuity or change in cultural beliefs or practices. For this essay, students would need to focus on specific global links relative to the question, instead of focusing on a similar situation somewhere else in the world. For example, saying that “China and Brazil both had Jesuit missionaries” is a comparison, not a connection. Arguing that “European Jesuit issionaries were proselytizing in South America and winning converts. This happened in China as well” does, however, draw an extra-regional connection because the term European Jesuits provides a specific reference showing how European practices affected South American beliefs.
A strong essay would demonstrate greater nuance and sophistication, including the relationship between change and continuity. It might note, for example, that a change in the early part of the long period covered in this question became a continuity for the rest of the period: The introduction of Christianity was a change in Latin America/the Caribbean, but then Christianity’s presence and expansion became a continuity. Similarly, nationalism developed as an ideology beginning in the eighteenth century, but it then became a continuity and has remained so through the present. A specific example of syncretism, such as vodun, could be introduced as a change when it first developed, but the process of the syncretism of different beliefs, ideas, or artistic forms is a continuity across the entire time period.
The best essays will be those that do all of this, engaging their own content knowledge with the specific framing of the question.
CCOT ESSAY SAMPLE
Question: Choose TWO of the areas below and analyze the developments of major religious & philosophical ideas between 2000 BCE & 600 CE.Be sure to discuss continuities as well as changes.EuropeSouth AsiaMiddle East
The major developments in religion and philosophy in the period 2000 BCE to 600 CE were that religions moved from concrete, polytheistic and localized to abstract, monotheistic and universal. In both the Middle East and Europe, especially after about 500 BCE, there was anincrease in the use of logic, reason, and science to explain some of life’s most basic questions. Throughout the period, people in both regionsremained religious and continued to seek answers to questions such as their existence, afterlife and natural phenomena, but the more complex thesocieties became and the more dissatisfied they became with the polytheistic religions, the more they moved toward monotheism and rationalism.
Religions at the beginning of the period
were concrete, local to the culture and polytheistic
. Most societies explained natural phenomena andanswered life’s most basic questions through their religion
. The development of religion is older in the Middle East than in Europe. The firstsocieties
such as the Sumerians believed in many gods and goddesses that were super humans
, but had the same characteristics as man. Not havingthe scientific knowledge to explain natural occurrences, these early civilizations explained them through the actions of their gods. Because priests hadknowledge of and access to the gods they were powerful religious and political figures
. In Europe, the Greeks and early Romans also worshiped a plethora of gods and goddesses, who were thought to control the heavens, the earth and the underworld
. These Gods married, had children, andfought just as humans did
. But these early religions did not set out principles for “right conduct.”
These religions became inadequate as thesocieties became more complex and there was greater interaction between them.
By 500 BCE changes in religion began to occur in both Europe and the Middle East
as the first monotheistic religion appeared in the Middle East,and in Europe the Greeks began to develop a philosophy based on rationalism
. The Hebrews returned from the Babylonian captivity with a strong belief in a single monotheistic god who was not only the god of the Hebrews, but a single universal god
. The Hebrews also were the first to have areligion that set out laws for living one’s life, as in the 10 Commandments
. The Persians who were a much larger and more complex empire than theHebrews, also moved toward a religion-Zoroastrianism, which preached about judgment day, free will, and the forces of good and evil
. As trade andtravel between civilizations increased there was interaction between different religious groups
. Nestorian Christians traveled west across the silk roads attempting to convert those of central Asia
. The development of Manichaeism, a syncretic blend of Buddhism, Zoroastrianism andChristianity, in Persia revealed an increasing interaction between religious ideas from different societies
. In Greece, Athens was experiencing itsgolden age
. To the educated, the polytheistic religion of the past was no longer satisfactory for explaining natural phenomena
. Socrates, Plato, andAristotle encourage the use of logic and reason in the search for truth
. Early Greek philosophers and Aristotle sought answers to the nature of thingssuch as the elements of the universe. The developments in science continued as Alexander the Greek brought the ideas of the Greeks of Europetogether with the ideas of those in the Middle East. This interaction caused major developments in physics, math and medicine. As the societies became increasingly more complex and there was continued interaction between different cultures further changes in religious ideas and philosophydeveloped.
Although changes in religion and philosophy continued into the Classical Era, the people continued through out the time period to seek answers totheir own existence, proper conduct, and the nature of the universe
. Religious institutions continue to be closely tied to the state
. In the period between the first century and sixth century, both regions are brought together by the Roman Empire. Ethical monotheism continued its growth in theregion with the development of Christianity
. It first developed in the Middle East and then spread into Europe. The spread of Christianity washelped by the extensive roads, general peace and later, imperial support of the Roman Empire
. The Greek tradition of humanism—to glorify andhonor man’s accomplishments continued to be popular with the Romans
. Philosophy also continued to develop with the Roman’s adoption of Stoicism and the work of people like the physician, Galen
. Even after the collapse of the Roman Empire, the Byzantines continued the legacy of Christianity and Greco-Roman traditions
. By the end of the Classical era, two monotheistic religions and a philosophy of humanism and rationalismhad developed in the regions.
:From the earliest of civilizations until 600 CE, religion played an important role in the lives of those in Europe and the Middle East. Religion became more complex as the societies developed and grew. All the major world religions and philosophies except Islam had developed by the end of the period in question. Judaism and Christianity provided their believers with a guide for living life on earth and explanations for the afterlife.Philosophies such as that of the Socratic philosophers pushed men to use reason as well as faith as a path to the truth.