Part I, Lesson 4 (continued)

Extension Questions:
Do Americans still believe in Manifest Destiny today? Does America stretch from sea to shining sea? What other land do we believe is destined to be a part of America?

5. Give students copies of Worksheet #4-3, Looking for Perspectives and Credibility. Using the biographical information on Tojetti and your discussions of the painting, have students complete the worksheet and discuss it. If this is the first time you've done something like this with your class, I would suggest doing it together. On the other hand, if you've done similar types of thinking with students, they could work on it in groups of three or four.

6. Show an overhead of Patricia Limerick's commentary on the ways Euro-Americans viewed the culture of American Indians, Resource #4-4 (this is a secondary source).

An interesting point of discussion is: What does "using the land properly" mean? What are the different points of view on that question, and why do people feel that way? What are the qualities of civilization and savagery? Are they exclusive? Can they overlap? Do Limerick's thoughts fit with the values and beliefs of Manifest Destiny? Why? Why not?

Note to teacher:
The following is not the Limerick quote for students, but rather on Limerick's quote from Limerick: "In the mid-twentieth century, historians found in the concept of culture a new way to analyze the workings of white/Indian relations. Without the concept of culture, Euro-Americans and Indians found the reasons and meanings behind each other's way of life opaque and bewildering. The very idea of 'culture'as a whole system of ideas and behavior was a creature of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, slow to move from anthropological circles to popular thought."

Assessment/Homework Options:
Have students write in their journals from the point of view of a person believing in Manifest Destiny in 1848. What is your opinion of America stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific? Explain why you feel this way.

Or students may choose to write a poem about Manifest Destiny, perhaps a "diamante" or "I Am" poem (see Using Primary Sources at the beginning of this notebook). Student groups also could create a visual or written metaphor or simile for Manifest Destiny and present and explain it to the class. For example, one of my student groups drew a knife spreading soft butter across a piece of bread. They explained that the bread was the territory of the West, the knife was the overland travelers from the east, and the soft butter was the Native Americans.

Part I, Lesson 4
Page 19