Explain the conflict of 1819–1820 about Missouri as the first clear indication of a deep-seated sectional division over slavery. Emphasize the two essential principles of sectional balance enshrined in the compromise: equal Senate representation of the 36°30’ line as the northern boundary of slavery.
Consider the causes and consequences of the Monroe Doctrine. The emphasis might be on the difference between the doctrine’s original context (the monarchist threat to the new Latin American republics) and the controversial ways in which the doctrine has sometimes been invoked in American history. Explain the relationship of the doctrine to the permanent issue of the United States’ interactions with its Latin American neighbors.