48 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2018
    1. the doctors, unthinkingly embracing the latest medical breakthrough, do not even demand a psychological test to determine the wisdom of bringing the gift of hearing to people who have managed for 65 years without it

      Meliora students, what do you think about this statement? Are there times "medical miracles" should NOT be used? Please give example(s).

    2. despite being deaf, she was the gossip editor of her high-school newspaper

      Meliora students, how do you think she achieved this?

    3. hearing has become the most burdensome of the senses. One only has to consider the number of ear plugs, sound-canceling devices, tranquilizers, and sleeping pills being purchased to attest to that.

      Meliora students, what do you think? Is your world inundated with noise? What actions do you take when you're surrounded by too much noise?

  2. Oct 2018
    1. Many of the new nations resisted the pressure to be drawn into the Cold War, joined in the “nonaligned movement,” which formed after the Bandung conference of 1955, and focused on internal development.

      Meliora students, what specific ideals does this organization have? What role(s) does this organization have today? Provide a summary and cite your source.

    2. Nearly all of the United States’ European allies believed that after their recovery from World War II their colonies would finally provide the combination of raw materials and protected markets for finished goods that would cement the colonies to Europe.

      Meliora students, the European belief that their colonies would want to continue to be colonies because of economic ties was incorrect. In today's global economy, are there examples of "colonization?" Are there countries that exert influence (e.g. money/aid, services, etc.) on other, economically disadvantaged countries? See if you can find an example and summarize it below, with a citation of your source.

    3. dividing ethnic and linguistic groups and natural features, and laying the foundation for the creation of numerous states lacking geographic, linguistic, ethnic, or political affinity.

      Meliora students, find an example of a country that has struggled (past or present) as a result of such artificial boundaries. Summarize your findings, and provide a citation for your source.

    4. the industrializing powers of Europe viewed the African and Asian continents as reservoirs of raw materials, labor, and territory for future settlement.

      Meliora students, does this behavior still exist in world politics? This article refers specifically to European powers; consider as well whether the United States has engaged in exploitation of other countries' resources.

      Find an example of such exploitation (if it exists) and summarize it. Include a citation of your source.

    5. Some European governments welcomed a new relationship with their former colonies; others contested decolonization militarily.

      Meliora students, please find an example of a country that won its independence from Europe through military force. Summarize what happened, and include a citation of your source.

  3. Sep 2018
    1. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

      Meliora students, which of these rights do you think are most often violated in Europe? Provide a link to EVIDENCE.

    2. Declaration was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 (

      Meliora students, how many countries were represented in drafting this document? From how many and which continents?

    3. Preamble

      Meliora students, please annotate phrases in this document which echo phrases in the United States Declaration of Independence and/or Constitution.

  4. Mar 2018
    1. Hemings shared a father, John Wayles, with Jefferson’s wife, Martha.

      Therefore, the familial relationship between Martha Jefferson and Sally Hemings was what, Meliora students? A gold star to the first person to correctly answer.

    2. What did this mean for the institution of slavery in America? What did it mean for the hundreds of other people Jefferson enslaved during his lifetime? Virtually nothing, as it did not transform American slavery or change the lives of others enslaved on Jefferson’s plantations. But it meant a great deal to the six Hemings-Wayles children, who had very different lives and destinies than others enslaved at Monticello.

      Meliora students, what other examples are there of black people (enslaved or not enslaved) whose own life didn't change, but whose actions helped change the lives of others? Be specific, and include a link to your source.

    3. Jefferson was on the defensive about this his entire time in the country. That is almost certainly why he put James and Sally Hemings on the payroll with the other servants at his residence, the Hôtel de Langeac. The siblings were paid wages near the very highest rate in the city for a chef de cuisine and chambermaid. They had access to other people of color, as their neighborhood had the greatest concentration of such people in Paris, a small group who helped one another. There were lawyers who filed petitions on behalf of the enslaved. They did so pro bono and for money, which the Hemings siblings had.

      Meliora students, in Between the World and Me, how did Ta-Nehisi Coates describe his experience in Paris? Please provide a brief summary below.

    4. decades of historiography that makes clear that enslaved people, when they had chances, often acted to shape their circumstances to the extent that they could

      Meliora students, find an example of another enslaved person who made choices that helped them improve their circumstances. Briefly describe how the slave influenced their situation, and provide a link to your source.

    5. A number of news reports as well as comments on social media discussing the plans drew the ire of many readers because they referred to Hemings as Jefferson’s “mistress” and used the word “relationship” to describe the connection between the pair, as if those words inevitably denote positive things. They do not, of course — especially when the word “mistress” is modified by the crucial word “enslaved.”

      Meliora students, what do you think? Given that Sally Hemings was enslaved, do you think it is appropriate to consider her interactions with Thomas Jefferson a "relationship?" Explain your answer.

    6. Jefferson would never be involved with “a slave girl” and that such a person was too low to have influenced Jefferson

      Meliora students, what are your thoughts? Would the disparity between Jefferson and Heming's status meant that she would have been unable to influence him? Explain your response.

  5. Feb 2018
    1. simulacrum

      Meliora students, what is the meaning of this word? Provide an example of another story (book, film, video game, etc.) that includes a simulacrum.

    2. The voice of one of the advanced mechas who finds David in the ice belongs to Ben Kingsley. It is not the first time in the film we hear it. Over the opening sequence, a dark shot of crashing waves, Kingsley sets the scene with a narration that has the tone of a religious text: famine, flooding, cities destroyed, humans sent into exile

      Meliora students, who caught this?

    3. One of the apparent objections was the epilogue set in the future: it was seen as both superfluous and a Spielbergian sop to sentiment: a snuggly, upbeat ending for a film that never courted one. Yet properly decoded, it's the opposite, and provides the film with a shattering payoff that raises it to the level of both directors' greatest work.

      Meliora students, what do you think of this claim? Do you agree or disagree? Why? Specifics, please.

    4. The film ends with mother and son lying sweetly in bed together, and David, the narrator tells us, drifting off "to that place where dreams are born".

      Meliora students, what did you think of this scene? What is the narrator implying about David's ability to dream?

    5. the mechas in AI behave with more humanity than the humans around them

      Meliora students, do you agree with this statement? Why or why not? Provide a specific example to support your viewpoint.

    6. Dr Hobby

      Meliora students, what do you think of this name? Was it accidental? Why may the filmmakers chosen this name for the character?

    7. The film is an Oedipal fairy tale about a robot boy called David driven by his programming to seek a mother's love.

      Meliora students, what is the story of Oedipus? Who was it written by? When? What is another story (book, film) you know that uses the Oedipal theme?

  6. Jan 2018
    1. Republican Party

      Meliora students, how and why did the Republican Party get founded? What were the initial "planks" in its platform? Summarize and cite your source(s).

    2. Senator Stephen Douglas

      Meliora students, who was Stephen Douglas? (We've met him in some of our other reading.) In addition to this act, find another example of legislation he introduced and fought for in Congress. Summarize and cite your source(s). Do not use an example one of your classmates has already used.

    1. Supreme Court

      Meliora students, what was the case about? Summarize and cite your source(s).

    2. Dred Scott v. Sandford

      Meliora students, who was Dred Scott? Who was Sanford? Summarize and cite your source(s).

    1. That nothing in this act contained shall be construed to impair the rights of person or property now pertaining to the Indians in said Territory, so long as such rights shall remain unextinguished by treaty between the United States and such Indians, or to include any territory which, by treaty with any Indian tribe, is not, without the consent of said tribe, to be included within the territorial limits or jurisdiction of any State or Territory; but all such territory shall be excepted out of the boundaries, and constitute no part of the Territory of Kansas, until said tribe shall signify their assent to the President of the United States to be included within the said Territory of Kansas, or to affect the authority of the government of the United States to make any regulation respecting such Indians, their lands, property, or other rights, by treaty, law, or otherwise, which it would have been competent to the government to make if this act had never passed.

      Meliora students, at this time (1854), what treaty(ies) existed between the US government and any Native American tribes that lived within the boundaries of the "Territory of Kansas?" Cite your source(s) of information.

    2. That all that part of the Territory of the United States included within the following limits, except such portions thereof as are hereinafter expressly exempted from the operations of this act, to wit, beginning at a point on the western boundary of the State of Missouri, where the thirty-seventh parallel of north latitude crosses the same; thence west on said parallel to the eastern boundary of New Mexico; thence north on said boundary to latitude thirty-eight; thence following said boundary westward to the east boundary of the Territory of Utah, on the summit of the Rocky Mountains; thence northward on said summit to the fortieth parallel of latitude, thence east on said parallel to the western boundary of the State of Missouri; thence south with the western boundary of said State to the place of beginning, be, and the same is hereby, created into a temporary government by the name of the Territory of Kansas

      Meliora students, what current-day states are included in this definition of the "Territory of Kansas?"

    3. That nothing in this act contained shall be construed to inhibit the government of the United States from dividing said Territory into two or more Territories, in such manner and at such times as Congress shall deem convenient and proper, or from attaching any portion of said Territory to any other State or Territory of the United State

      Meliora students, this clause gave the US government the right to divide the Kansas territory into multiple territories or states. Based on the statements in Sec. 14 of this document, what would each territory/state have the right to do in regards to slavery?

    4. it being the true intent and meaning of this act not to legislate slavery into any Territory or State, nor to exclude it therefrom, but to leave the people thereof perfectly free to form an regulate their domestic institutions in their own way, subject only to the Constitution of the United States

      Meliora students, what is this saying? What right(s) did it transfer from the federal government to the states and territories?

    5. being inconsistent with the principle of non-intervention by Congress with slaves in the States and Territories, as recognized by the legislation of eighteen hundred and fifty, commonly called the Compromise Measures,

      Meliora students, this refers to the 1850 Compromise, which is summarized here: https://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/ourdocs/Compromise1850.html

    6. That the Constitution, and all Laws of the United States which are not locally inapplicable, shall have the same force and effect within the said Territory of Nebraska as elsewhere within the United States, except the eighth section of the act preparatory to the admission of Missouri into the Union approved March sixth, eighteen hundred and twenty,

      Meliora students, this refers to the Missouri Compromise, which we will also annotate.

    7. rovided further, That nothing in this act contained shall construed to impair the rights of person or property now pertaining the Indians in said Territory' so long as such rights shall remain unextinguished by treaty between the United States and such Indians, or include any territory which, by treaty with any Indian tribe, is not, without the consent of said tribe, to be included within the territorial line or jurisdiction of any State or Territory; but all such territory shall excepted out of the boundaries, and constitute no part of the Territory of Nebraska, until said tribe shall signify their assent to the President of the United States to be included within the said Territory of Nebraska. or to affect the authority of the government of the United States make any regulations respecting such Indians, their lands, property, or other rights, by treaty, law, or otherwise, which it would have been competent to the government to make if this act had never passed.

      Meliora students, what does this mean? Extra credit to anyone who comes to class with a simple summary of the treaty(ies) in place at this time (1854) with Native Americans.

  7. Oct 2017
    1. This is no time (My Lord) to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism

      Meliora students, what does MLK mean by "cooling off" and "gradualism?"

    2. And those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual.

      Meliora students, are there similar movements going on today? Provide a short response (a sentence or two) and a link to a source that supports your position.

    3. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence.

      Meliora students, do you agree or disagree with MLK's stance? Do you think violent or peaceful protests are more effective? Provide evidence (link to source(s)) to support your viewpoint.

    4. We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality.

      Meliora students, has this changed? Statistically speaking, how much have the number of (reported) cases changed in the past 45 years? Provide a link to a source.

    5. And if America is to be a great nation (Yes), this must become true.

      Meliora students, do you agree with this statement? Is racial equality a prerequisite for American being a great nation? Why?

    6. One hundred years later (All right), the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity.

      Meliora students, it has been 45 years since MLK made this statement. How much has the relative wealth of black people improved since then (gap between wealth of blacks and whites)? Write a short answer, and include a link to a source.

    1. secure the southern border of the United States through the immediate construction of a physical wall on the southern border, monitored and supported by adequate personnel so as to prevent illegal immigration, drug and human trafficking, and acts of terrorism

      Meliora students, what are the estimated costs to build such a wall?

    2. Secure Fence Act and IIRIRA

      Meliora students, what are the "Secure Fence Act" and "IIRIRA?" Please provide a short summary of their intent and when they were enacted.

    3. Transnational criminal organizations operate sophisticated drug- and human-trafficking networks and smuggling operations on both sides of the southern border, contributing to a significant increase in violent crime and United States deaths from dangerous drugs.

      Meliora students, please find sources that detail the incidences and costs of drug- and human-trafficking coming from the southern border of the United States.

    4. The head of each executive department and agency shall identify and quantify all sources of direct and indirect Federal aid or assistance to the Government of Mexico on an annual basis over the past five years, including all bilateral and multilateral development aid, economic assistance, humanitarian aid, and military aid. Within 30 days of the date of this order, the head of each executive department and agency shall submit this information to the Secretary of State. Within 60 days of the date of this order, the Secretary shall submit to the President a consolidated report reflecting the levels of such aid and assistance that has been provided annually, over each of the past five years.

      Meliora students, how much does the US Federal government spend on aid/assistance to Mexico each year?

    5. fear determinations

      Meliora students, what is a "fear determination?"

    6. The recent surge of illegal immigration at the southern border with Mexico has placed a significant strain on Federal resources and overwhelmed agencies charged with border security and immigration enforcement, as well as the local communities into which many of the aliens are placed.

      Meliora students, please find reliable evidence of the costs related to illegal immigration.

    7. Aliens who illegally enter the United States without inspection or admission present a significant threat to national security and public safety.

      Meliora students, what do you think of this? Please find evidence of the veracity (or not) of this statement.