Prof. David Campion

Anti-Treaty IRA men in the streets of Dublin, 1922 © Hulton Picture Library



During the semester students will complete two book reviews. You will write your reviews on the readings assigned for the weeks in which you lead the group discussion. If you are leading discussion only once, then you may write the second review on whichever of the assigned readings you wish.

Your review should be a critical evaluation of the book or readings for the week. You should consider the perspectives, experiences, and loyalties of the author(s) as well as the time and circumstances in which the author(s) wrote. If the work is a historical study, is the research and thesis compelling? If it is a literary work, what are the main themes? If it is a political manifesto or memoir, is it convincing? You may consider issues or controversies raised in class, but the review should articulate your reaction most of all.

Since you are focusing on mostly one or two readings, you should use parenthetical citations containing the author and page number - i.e. (Woodham-Smith, 145). If you are reviewing several works, you are encouraged to employ a comparative approach.

Book reviews should be 4-6 doubled-spaced, numbered pages using standard fonts and margins. The reviews are due in class on the Tuesday after the week that the book or readings were discussed.

At the end of the semester each student will complete a 16-20 page bibliographical essay focusing on a recurring theme in the course (i.e. "Conflict," "Ethnicity," "Religion," "Nationalism and the Irish Nation(s)," "Emigration & the Diaspora," "the Condition of women," etc). This is not a research essay and does not require any further reading beyond what is assigned for the course. It is instead an opportunity for you to synthesize and present in a comprehensive and thematic way what you have learned in the course as well as your own reactions to the readings and discussions.

Although the essay will be based on a critical analysis of the course readings, you may, if you wish, also incorporate books from the supplementary reading list as well as any research or reading you have done elsewhere.

Sources and Citations:

Since this is an essay based on common readings rather than individual research, you may use parenthetical citations (as in the book reviews) rather than footnotes or endnotes. You must, however, include a full bibliography at the end of the essay and if you cite a reading or source apart from the ones we discussed in class, be sure to provide a full citation. If you have any questions about proper citation practices please speak with the instructor or consult the College's Academic Integrity Policy and The Chicago Manual of Style (17th Edition) for further guidance.

The Essay:

Your essay should be 16-20 pages and it must have a title. All pages must be doubled-spaced, numbered, and must use standard fonts and margins. In writing and revising your essay you should consult the History Department Writing Guidelines and Grading Standards. Additionally, you might find a visit to the Lewis & Clark Writing Center and the following two books helpful:

Strunk & White, The Elements of Style
Wilson Follett, Modern American Usage: A Guide

Finally, be sure to edit and proofread your essay thoroughly before submitting it. Poor syntax or structure and excessive errors in spelling, punctuation, or grammar will lower your grade.

The bibliographical essay is due at 5:00 pm on Friday December 15.

Created by campion@lclark.edu | Updated February 2016