World History 2011-12 Sparta-Athens debate

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World History 2011-12

Sparta-Athens debate

Preparation: Read textbook pp. 111-121. Create a chart comparing Sparta and Athens in the following areas: Political structure, Social structure (class), Social structure (gender), Economy, Culture, and Intellectual developments. Refer to the Categories of History attachment for guidelines.

You will be using this material to debate which was a better city-state, Sparta or Athens.

You may also use the web sources below to support or augment your arguments.

Please come prepared with charts - you will have about 15 minutes in class to make your points into arguments. AFTER that, you will be divided into two sides. You should be prepared to debate EITHER side.

Grading will be as follows:

  • Two quality contributions (argument plus supporting evidence from text or web sources below), including quotes from two different sources - 10 pts.

  • One quality contribution w/ source reference/quote - 9 pts.

  • No oral contribution or contribution lacking evidence etc. - 0 pts. but you may turn in notes you brought to class (not taken during debate) for 5 pts.

Web Sources on the Sparta vs. Athens question

Internet Ancient History Sourcebook – primary sources on Athens and Sparta

WSU online history of Sparta – great resource, very readable

WSU online history of Athens – same as above; scroll down to bottom of page

BBC website on Ancient Greece – for grownups – good info.

This website is maintained by an AP History teacher, Mr. Dowling, and the information should be reliable

BBC website on Ancient Greece for younger folks – easier to read and lots of fun categories, like “slave life”

Categories of History

Note: This is an in-process document that reflects my thoughts and experience with reading and writing about history. This is not “the” interpretation of historical categories, just one that I hope you will find useful.

Political: leadership and leaders, government structure (state and local), domestic and foreign policies (administration, conflict)

Economic: Trade (internal and external), taxes and other state revenues (including conquests), resource value (natural and man-made), health of the economy (productivity, imports vs. exports), expenditures (army, infrastructure), technological developments that result in monetary gain – Note that the proper adjective here is “economic.” “Economical” means cost-saving.

Social: Class structure, gender roles, family life, demographic changes (plague, new crops)

Cultural: Arts, religious beliefs as they affect daily life, stories, entertainment, other aspects of daily life such as food, clothing, etiquette.

Religious (may intersect with political, social, or cultural): Belief system (ideology) or systems, including religious hierarchy, texts, “rules” – sometimes this category is included in either “cultural” or “social” history

Intellectual (may intersect with religious or cultural): literature, philosophy, development of writing systems, libraries, universities/schools, “natural philosophy” = science, individual leaders of thought, political theories.

Technological: This category is interwoven with all of the above, particularly political and economic categories. Technological developments can be as simple as the use of stone tools or as complex as a supercollider. In each case, someone pays for the development of the technology, and the results vary. Some technologies may lead to political dominance (the longbow, for example) or economic superiority (the telescope, for spotting ships), or social changes (the birth control pill), or shifts in several categories (the printing press: economic, religious, intellectual, political).

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