Cumulative Essay Questions from Past ap exams



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Cumulative Essay Questions from Past AP Exams


  1. How did economic, geographic, and social factors encourage the growth of slavery as an important part of the economy of the southern colonies between 1607 and 1775?

***2. Early encounters between American Indians and European colonists led to a variety of

relationships among the different cultures.

Analyze how the actions taken by BOTH American Indians and European colonists

shaped those relationships in TWO of the following regions. Confine your answer to

the 1600s.

New England

Chesapeake

Spanish Southwest

New York and New France

***Analyze the differences between the Spainsh settlements in the Southwest and the English colonies in New England in the seventeenth century in terms of TWO of the following:

Politics

Religion

Economic Development


** Compare the ways in which TWO of the following reflected tensions in colonial society.

Bacons’s Rebellion (1676)

Pueblo Revolt (1680)

Salem witchcraft trials (1692)

Stono Rebellion (1739)
2. Analyze the extent to which religious freedom existed in the British North American colonies prior to 1700.
3. Analyze the ways in which TWO of the following influenced the development of American society.
Puritanism during the seventeenth century

The Great Awakening during the eighteenth century

The Second Great Awakening during the nineteenth century

4. “Throughout the Colonial period, economic concerns had more to do with the settling of British North America than did religious concerns.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific reference to economic and religious concerns.
** Compare the ways in which religion shaped the development of colonial society (to 1740) in TWO of the following regions.

New England

Chesapeake

Middle Atlantic


5. For the period before 1750, analyze the ways in which Britain’s policy of salutary neglect influenced the development of American society as illustrated in the following.
Legislative assemblies

Commerce


Religion

6. Analyze the cultural and economic responses of TWO of the following groups to the Indians of North America before 1750.


British

French


Spanish
***The French and Indian War (1754-1763) altered the relationship between Britain and its North American colonies. Assess this change with regard to TWO of the following in the period between 1763-1775.

Land Acquisition

Politics

Economics


7. “This history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpation, all having, in direct object, the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these States.”
Evaluate this accusation made against George III in the Declaration of Independence.
**** Analyze the ways in which British imperial policies between 1763 and 1776

intensified colonials’ resistance to British rule and their commitment to republican

values.

8. Analyze the degree to which the Articles of Confederation provided an effective form of government with respect to any TWO of the following.


Foreign relations

Economic conditions

Western lands

9. Analyze the extent to which the American Revolution represented a radical alteration in American political ideas and institutions. Confine your answer the 1775 to 1800.

10. “In the two decades before the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War, a profound shift occurred in the way many Americans thought and felt about the British government and their colonial governments.”
Assess the validity of this statement in view of the political and constitutional debates of these decades.
**Evaluate the extent to which the Articles of Confederation were effective in solving the problems that confronted the new nation.
******Analyze how the ideas and experiences of the revolutionary era influenced the

principles embodied in the Articles of Confederation.


***Settlers in the eighteenth century American backcountry sometimes resorted to violent protest to express their grievances. Analyze the causes and significance of TWO of the following:

March of the Paxton Boys

Regluator Movement

Shays’ Rebellion

Whiskey Rebellion
11. The Bill of Rights did not come from a desire to protect the liberties won in the American Revolution, but rather from a fear of the powers of the new federal government.”
Assess the validity of the statement.
***. Analyze the reasons for the Anti-Federalists’ opposition to ratifying the Constitution.

12. Evaluate the relative importance of domestic and foreign affairs in shaping American politics in the 1790s.


** Analyze the contributions of TWO of the following in helping establish a stable government after the adoption of the Constitution.

John Adams

Thomas Jefferson

George Washington


** Although the power of the national government increased during the early republic, this development often faced serious opposition. Compare the motives and effectiveness of those opposed to the growing power of the national government in TWO of the following.

Whiskey Rebellion (1794)

Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions (1798-99)

Hartford Convention (1814-15)

Nullification Crisis (1832-33)
13. Although historically represented as distinct parties, the Federalists and the Whigs in fact shared common political ideology, represented many of the same interest groups, and proposed similar programs and policies.
Assess the validity of this statement.
14. Compare the expansionist foreign policies of Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James K Polk. To what extent did their policies strengthen the United States?
*** Analyze the impact of the market revolution (1815–1860) on the economies of TWO

of the following regions.

The Northeast

The Midwest

The South

15. In what ways did the early nineteenth-century reform movements for abolition and women’s rights illustrate both the strengths and weaknesses of democracy in the early American republic?


***In what ways did the Second Great Awakening in the North influence TWO of the following?

Abolitionism

Temperance

The cult of domesticity

Utopian communities
16. How did TWO of the following contribute to the reemergence of a two party system in the period 1820 to 1840?
Major political personalities

States’ rights

Economic issues
** In what ways did developments in transportation bring about economic and social change in the United states in the period 1820 to 1860?

17. “Developments in transportation, rather than in manufacturing and agriculture sparked American economic growth in the first half of the nineteenth century.”


Assess the validity of this statement.
***Compare the experiences of TWO of the following groups of immigrants during the period 1830-1860.

English


Irish

German
*****Analyze the political, economic, and religious tensions between immigrant Roman

Catholics and native-born Protestants in the United States from the 1830s through

the 1850s.


18. Discuss the impact of territorial expansion on national unity between 1800 and 1850.

19. Analyze the extent to which TWO of the following influenced the development of democracy between 1820 and 1840.


Jacksonian economic policy

Changes in electoral politics

Second Great Awakening

Westward Movement

20. The Jacksonian Period (1824-1848) has been celebrated as the era of the “common man.” To what extent did the period live up to its characterization? Consider TWO of the following in your response.
Economic development

Politics


Reform movements

21. “Although Americans perceived Manifest Destiny as a benevolent movement, it was in fact an aggressive imperialism pursued at the expense of others.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific reference to American expansionism in the 1840’s.

22. “Although the economic development of the Trans-Mississippi West is popularly associated with hardy individualism, it was in fact largely dependent on the federal government.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific references to western economic activities in the nineteenth century.
*** Use TWO of the following categories to analyze the ways in which African Americans

created a distinctive culture in slavery.

Family

Music


Oral traditions

Religions


*****Analyze the social, political, and economic forces of the 1840s and early 1850s that led

to the emergence of the Republican Party.

23. Assess the moral arguments and political actions of those opposed to the spread of slavery in the context of TWO of the following.
Missouri Compromise

Mexican War

Compromise of 1850

Kansas-Nebraska


******* For the period between 1844 and the Civil War, evaluate the impact of slavery as a political issue on the history of any THREE of the following parties:

Democratic Party

Free-Soil Party

Know-Nothings (American Party)


Republican Party


Whig Party
***** How did THREE of the following lead to the secession of South Carolina in 1860?

Nullification Crisis of 1832-1833

Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 and its aftermath

Dred-Scott Decision 1857

Lincoln-Douglas Debates 1858

Election of Lincoln 1860

24. Analyze the ways in which supporters of slavery in the nineteenth century used legal, religious, and economic arguments to defend the institution of slavery.

25. Analyze the impact of any TWO of the following on the American industrial worker between 1865 and 1900.


Govnerment Actions

Immigration

Labor Unions

Technological changes

26. Analyze the economic consequences of the Civil War with respect to any TWO of the following in the United States between 1865 and 1880.
Agriculture

Labor


Industrialization

Transportation

27. “From the 1840s through the 1890s, women’s activities in the intellectual, social, economic, and political spheres effectively challenged traditional attitudes about women’s place in society.”
Assess the validity of this statement.

28. “American reform movements between 1820 and 1860 reflected both optimistic and pessimistic views of human nature and society.” Assess the validity of this statement in reference to reform movements in THREE of the following areas:


Education

Temperance

Women’s rights

Utopian experiments

Penal institutions

29. How were the lives of the Plains Indians in the second half of the nineteenth century affected by technological developments and government actions?


30. “I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white or black races.”
How can this 1858 statement of Abraham Lincoln be reconciled with his 1862 Emancipation Proclamation?

***Evaluate the impact of the Civil War on political and economic developments in TWO of the following regions.

The South

The North

The West

Focus your answer on the period between 1865 and 1900.


***Explain why and how the role of the federal government changed as a result of the Civil War with respect to TWO of the following during the period 1861-1877:

Race Relations

Economic development

Westward expansion


31. In what ways were the late-nineteenth-century Populists the heirs of the Jacksonian Democrats with respect to overall objectives AND specific proposals for reform?

32. How and why did transportation developments spark economic growth during the period from 1860 to 1900 in the United States?


** Analyze ways in which farmers and industrial workers responded to industrialization in the Gilded Age (1865-1900).
33. “Although the economic growth of the United States between 1860 and 1900 has been attributed to a governmental policy of laissez-faire, it was in fact encouraged and sustained by direct governmental intervention.”
Assess the validity of this statement.

34. “The reorganization and consolidation of business structures was more responsible for late nineteenth-century American industrialization than was the development of new technologies.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific references to business structures and technology between 1865 and 1900.

35. Analyze the reasons for the emergence of the Populist movement in the late nineteenth century.

36. Compare and contrast the attitudes of THREE of the following toward the wealth that was created in the United States during the late nineteenth century.
Andrew Carnegie

Eugene V. Debs

Horatio Alger

Booker T. Washington

Ida M. Tarbell
***Explain how TWO of the following individuals responded to the economic and social problems created by industrialization during the late nineteenth and early tentienth centuries

Jane Addams

Andrew Carnegie

Samuel Gompers

Upton Sinclair
*****Choose TWO of the following organizations and explain their strategies for advancing

the interests of workers. To what extent were these organizations successful in

achieving their objectives? Confine your answer to the period from 1875 to 1925.

Knights of Labor

American Federation of Labor

Socialist Party of America

Industrial Workers of the World
*******Explain the origins of TWO of the following third parties and evaluate their impact on

United States politics and national policies.

The People’s Party (Populists), 1892

The Progressive Party (Bull Moose Party), 1912

The States’ Rights Party (Dixiecrats), 1948

The American Independent Party, 1968


37. Analyze the ways in which state and federal legislation and judicial decisions, including those of the Supreme Court, affected the efforts of any TWO of the following groups to improve their position in society between 1880 and 1920.
African Americans

Farmers


Workers

38. “The United States entered the First World War not ‘to make the world safe for democracy’ as President Wilson claimed, but to safeguard American economic interests.”


Assess the validity of this statement.

39. To what extent did the United States achieve the objectives that led it to enter the First World War?


***Analyze ways in which the federal government sought support on the home front for the war effort during the First World War.
40. Assess the relative influence of THREE of the following in the American decision to declare war in Germany in 1917.
German naval policy

American economic interests

Woodrow Wilson’s idealism

Allied propaganda

American’s claim to world power
***Historians have Argued that the Progressive reform movement lost momentum in the 1920’s. Evaluate this statement with respect to TWO of the following.

Regulation of Business

Labor

Immigrants


***To what extent did the role of the federal government change under President Theodore Roosevelt in regard to TWO of the following.

Labor


Trusts

Conservation

World affairs
41. Describe and account for the rise of nativism in American society from 1900 to 1930.

42. Why did socialism fail to become a major force in American politics between 1900 and 1940 despite widespread dissatisfaction with the social and economic order and significant support for radical movements during that period?

43. In what ways did economic conditions and developments in the arts and entertainment help create the reputation of the 1920s as the Roaring Twenties?

44. “Although American writers of the 1920’s and 1930’s criticized American society, the nature of their criticisms differed markedly in the two decades.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific reference to writers in both decades.
45. To what extent and why did the United States adopt an isolationist policy in the 1920s and 1930s.
**Compare and contrast United States foreign policy after the First World War and after the Second World War. Consider the periods 1919-1928 and 1945-1950.
** Compare and Contrast United States society in the 1920’s and the 1950’s with respect to TWO of the following:

race relations

role of women

consumerism


46. Analyze the ways in which the Great Depression altered the American social fabric in the 1930s.

***”Landslide presidential victories do not ensure continued political effectiveness or legislative success.”

Assess the validity of this statement by comparing TWO of the following presidential administrations.

Franklin Roosevelt (1936)

Lynden Johnson (1964)

Richard Nixon (1972)

Ronald Reagan (1984)
47. Identify THREE of the following New Deal measures and analyze the ways in which each of the three attempted to fashion a more stable economy and a more equitable society.
Agricultural Adjustment Act

Securities and Exchange Commission

Wagner National Labor Relations Act

Social Security Act


*******Analyze the home-front experiences of TWO of the following groups during the

Second World War.

African Americans

Japanese Americans

Jewish Americans

Mexican Americans

48. “Although the 1960s are usually considered the decade of greatest achievement for Black civil rights, the 1940s and 1950s were periods of equally important gains.”
Assess the validity of this statement.

49. Describe THREE of the following and analyze the ways in which each of the three has affected the status of women in American society since 1940.


Changing economic conditions

The rebirth of an organized women’s movement

Advances in reproductive technology

The persistence of traditional definitions of women’s roles

50. Analyze the influence of TWO of the following on American-Soviet relations in the decade following the Second World War.
Yalta Conference

Communist revolution in China

Korean War

McCarthyism

51. “Vice Presidents who have succeeded to the presidency on the death of the President have been less effective in their conduct of domestic AND foreign policy than the men they replaced.”
Assess the validity of this statement for any TWO of the following pairs.
William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt

Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman

John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson

52. To what extent did the decade of the 1950s deserve its reputation as an age of political, social, and cultural conformity?


***While the United States appeared to be dominated by consensus and conformity in the 1950’s, some Americans reacted against the status quo.

Analyze the critiques of United States society made by TWO of the following

Youth

Civil Rights Activists



Intellectuals
** How did the African American Civil Rights movement of the 1950’s and 1960’s address the failures of the reconstruction?

53. Discuss, with respect to TWO of the following, the view that the 1960’s represented a period of profound cultural change.


Education

Gender roles

Music

Race relations


** Describe and account for changes in the American presidency between 1960 and 1975, as symbolized by Kennedy’s “Camelot”, Johnson’s Great Society, and Nixon’s Watergate. In your answer, address the powers of the presidency and the role of the media.

54. “Foreign affairs rather than domestic issues shaped presidential politics in the election year 1968.”


Assess the validity of this statement with specific reference to foreign and domestic issues.

55. “1968 was a turning point for the United States.” To what extent is this an accurate assessment? In your answer discuss TWO of the following:


National politics

Vietnam War

Civil Rights
******Analyze the ways in which the events and trends of the 1970s diminished the nation’s

economic power and international influence, and challenged Americans’ confidence



in both.

56. Assess the success of the United States’ policy of containment in Asia between 1945 and 1975.


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