Heroes: Ruth Bader Ginsburg and John Lewis
For our last major essay, I would like you to make sense of who can be a hero (and perhaps who cannot). This essay is based on the “heroes” presented each of the past ten weeks (or is it eleven?). We have seen a diverse set of heroes–by sex, race. ethnicity, religion, age, occupations, fame, places where they came from, and places they came to.
I did leave out some who are considered big heroes today, and I have been quite deliberate about that. I would like you to look at those presented in our modules each week.
Choose at least two of them, though you could choose more, or even all of them, and compare and contrast those “heroes.” What do they have in common, and what differences do they have? Then ask yourselves why are these people heroes.
In your conclusion, I would like you to say, “One thing we can say about all of these people considered heroes is _________________. (fill in the blank.) What you are doing is a generalization, and that is a tool of analysis that will be useful to you in any analytical essay you write. (See the page in our module this week–Generalizations.)
Let me define a hero, at least in regards to this essay: It is those who fight for something bigger than themselves, those who fight for all of us, and I do mean a fight. This fight could be as simple as the way these heroes lead everyday life among us, though it could also be those who stand out from the rest of us, to fight for many, perhaps us all. They might be famous, or they might have no fame at all–they could be related to us, or they might be us.
That fight is never a fight to put down or bring down those who are struggling to find a place in our society, an equal place, though it may be a fight against those who are in power, the mighty and the few, and those who identify with them.
These heroes may be among us today, and may know us, and we know them, or we, or part of ourselves, may be them. And if they are those from the American past, how do they affect who we are today? Do they help, even if passed away, those who struggle to help others today, struggle to help this be a better society, one where everyone has a chance, has a right, to make a better life, and breathe the better air of freedom and equality?
This essay needs to be at least three to five pages, double spaced, in MLA Format. it does not need to be a research essay, but if you want it to be, it can be–make sure you cite any sources outside your personal experience and this class both within the essay and on a Works Cited page, in MLA format (and that Works Cited page, not a part of the page count for the essay).
The essay can simply be based on the “hero” files in each module we have had so far, and if so, you need only name the hero the file presented, and that it came from this class–that in the essay itself, and no need for a Works Cited page entry. Personal experience welcome too, and that only need be cited as such within the essay, no need for a Works Cited page entry..
The Professor Draft of this essay is due at the end of Week 13– on November 22nd. I will leave comments about your Professor Draft on the Assignment page, just as I have done with the “I Become My Own Hero” essay and the Research Essay. You will write a final draft, based on my suggestions for revision and any new ideas you have, a “Semester Draft” which will be due at the end of the semester on December 16th.
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