Test Review Final Examination HIST 416B
Each test review is designed to prompt you to think about important questions concerning the information we’ve covered in lectures and discussions. These are not necessarily the questions that will be asked on the test. But they will help you to think about the information in a way that will improve your studying by clarifying many of the important issues. Remember—always review your lecture notes each day to make sure you didn’t miss any vital information. Feel free to see me after class or email me if you are not sure about something. And if you were absent for a class, never go into a test missing an entire day’s notes. Make a friend or two in the class, and get the notes from them. Think about these questions and be prepared to know the information they call for:
- What events in the 20th Century made the American middle class more liberal and tolerant? How did the Warren Court reflect this reform climate in its major decisions? What were these decisions and how did they change the rights of individual citizens versus the state?
- Why was John F. Kennedy so popular? Why did the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba fail? What were the major foreign policy events during Kennedy’s Administration (1960-63)? How did Kennedy’s actions often differ from the ideals he professed? What were the domestic programs of the “New Frontier”?
- How did Johnson’s approach to domestic problems differ from Goldwater’s? Specifically, what were the major programs and initiatives of the Great Society? What were some of the weaknesses (according to Harrington, you…)? In Vietnam, Santo Domingo, Latin America and elsewhere, how did Johnson change JFK’s foreign policy approach?
- Once safely elected in 1964, why did Johnson adopt Goldwater’s approach to Vietnam in 1965? What was the significance of the Tonkin Resolution, Pleiku, the Tet Offensive, etc.?
- In what ways, did the counter culturists revolt against the traditional values of the dominant culture? Why did the counter culture ultimately fade in popularity?
- Know the material covered in our discussion of the civil rights movement, including the significance of all major events (e.g. Rosa Parks’ refusal to sit in the back of the bus, the lunch counter sit-ins, protest marches, etc.), as covered in your reading and our discussion of Harvard Sitkoff’s book. Be sure you can write an essay about the movement that covers specific events, people, and ideas?
- Why was there an urban crisis after the 1960s? What long-term trends (e.g. cities can no longer annex suburbs to capture middle and upper income tax base, etc.) contributed to the inner cities’ problems? How did liberal programs like FHA and VA loans hurt the cities? What was red-lining and block-busting? How did federal policies hurt the cities and help the suburbs and sunbelt?
- Why did America suffer an ecological crisis after World War II? What did Paul Ehrlich see as the cause? How did Barry Commoner revise this view? How did the states and EPA respond to Commoner’s insights?
- What major events led did Richard Nixon and Henry Kissenger to switch America’s Cold War foreign policy from Containment to Détente? What were the major events that shaped their policy in the Mideast? In Latin America, what policy did Nixon and Kissenger continue? How does their reaction to Chilean President Salvatore Allende illustrate this?
- How did the murders at Kent State, Lt. William Calley’s trial for the My Lai Massacre, and the Pentagon Papers scandal turn the public against the war?
- On the domestic front, how did Nixon’s approach to civil rights evolve over time? What was the purpose of Revenue Sharing and the New Federalism? How did it serve as an intellectual foundation for Ronald Reagan’s presidency? What was the Family Assistance Plan (FAP) that Nixon and Daniel Patrick Moynihan championed? Why did both Democrats and Republicans reject it? What was Nixon’s concept of the “Silent Majority”?
- What was the Imperial Presidency? What longtime (but little used) presidential powers did Nixon abuse? How did the Watergate Scandal end his presidency? How did President Gerald Ford (1974-76) dismantle the Imperial Presidency?
- How did inflation curtail some of the domestic initiatives of President Jimmy Carter (1976-80)? Specifically, what did Carter’s national energy plan call for? What was Carter’s foreign policy and how did he respond to events like the Russian invasion of Afghanistan and the Iran Hostage Crisis?
- How did Ronald Reagan’s domestic policies differ sharply from the New Deal liberalism of previous presidents? What were the specific policies (e.g. create tax deductions in urban opportunity zones) that Reagan proposed? How did Reagan’s foreign policy continue the Détente trend? How did they diverge? What were the major foreign policy events of his presidency?
- How did President George Bush (1988-92) continue and not continue the domestic and foreign policies of Reagan?
- In what ways did President Bill Clinton (1992-2000) try to return to the New Deal legacy of liberal Keynesian presidents like Truman, LBJ and Carter? What happened to his national health insurance initiative? What was the “Contract with America” that House speaker Newt Gingrich pushed? On the foreign policy front, how did Clinton seek to continue the peacemaker Détente role off the US in the Mideast, Africa, and elsewhere? What was GATT and NAFTA? Why was Clinton impeached?
- How was President George W. Bush’s (2000-2008) foreign policy after the 9-11 attacks a sharp change from the past? How was his domestic policies similar to Ronald Reagan’s? Be able to write about specific programs and events. Don’t just mention them, know the specifics.
Also be prepared to discuss major ideas in the Schlesinger book (and, of course, Sitkoff’s work) that we discussed in class.