? We will have studied the idea of Imperialism and how it began in India
? We will have discussed Imperialism in India between 1850-1930.
? Why did Gandhi believe so strongly in non-violent resistance?
? How has Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violent resistance influenced other non-violent movements around the world?
? Students will be able to make the connection between Gandhi’s fight for Indian independence and other non-violent movements that followed.
? Students will be able to understand reasons why Gandhi believed in non-violence and civil disobedience.
? Students will be able to analyze Gandhi’s role in Indian independence and hypothesize whether India would have gained independence without his leadership.
Description of Audience:
? This will be taught to a 10th grade standard world history class. This class has wonderful potential but needs help strengthening their writing skills. They have shown great improvement during the year. 20% of the students are Asian, 23% Hispanic, and 54% white. [Based on the statistics of Mountain View High School where I will be student teaching.]
Basic classroom norms already set:
? Homework assignments will be written on the board at the beginning of every day. Students can write down the assignment during the class period.
? The quick write will be on the overhead as students walk into the classroom. They know to pick up their journals located on a shelf in the classroom and wait for instructions.
? In this class, students have a journal and a notebook. The journal is kept in class and used for quick writes, free writes and other creative writing activities. The notebooks are used for taking notes during class. The notebooks go home with the students and can be referred to when completing homework assignments and papers at home.
? We have been using primary sources throughout the year so students are use to reading and analyzing them.
? Students are used to taking notes during lectures or activities such as the press conference.
? Student journals (kept in the classroom)
? List of questions for the Press Release that will be passed out to students
? Bowl for questions
? Question and Answer sheet for my own reference
? Copies of the Matrix
? Movie Gandhi
o Prompt for day 1 quick write
o Prompt for day 2 quick write
o Overhead of the Nonviolence article by Gandhi
? Copies of Worksheet for Nonviolence article
? Copies of the two news articles
? Copies of Venn-diagram
Brief Outline of Three-Day Lesson Plan:
Day 1: Biography of Gandhi
o Explore Gandhi’s background and particular events that shaped his beliefs in non-violent civil disobedience.
o Have students learn about Gandhi through a Press Release and asking questions.
o Have students begin working on matrix
o Have students write newspaper article
o Objective: Students will better understand Gandhi’s background and how it impacted his philosophy of non-violent resistance.
Day 2: Gandhi as a leader
o Explore the meaning of civil disobedience and how Gandhi used this idea in his leadership.
o Show movie clip to help promote discussion on Civil Disobedience and allow students to see a visual
o Students continue to fill in Matrix
o Objective: Students will be able to define civil disobedience and relate it to Gandhi.
Day 3: Gandhi’s lasting effects
o Explore how Gandhi’s philosophy has influenced other movements since.
o Have students analyze a memoir by Gandhi relating to his philosophy of non-violent resistance.
o Activity: Investigating examples of nonviolent protests and how they relate back to Gandhi’s guiding principals.
o Finish filling in matrix
o Objective: Students will be able to understand a primary source by Gandhi and relate Gandhi’s principals to other groups.
California Standards met:
? Touches on 10.4.2
Day 1 Lesson
1) Grabber Activity (15 minutes)
a) Guided imagery (7 minutes)
i) Have all the students take out their journal and a pen or pencil. Ask them to place all other materials on the ground.
ii) Ask students to sit up in their chairs and close their eyes. I will turn off the lights in the classroom.
iii) I will tell the students the following narrative:
(1) It is 1919 and you are living in India. A new law has just been issued outlawing any public meetings or gatherings. Your town does not have any electricity and does not receive a newspaper. Because or this, you were not told of the new law. However, a friend in town brings you a flyer for a festival happening at the capital city, Amristar. The festival is intended to be a day of fasting, prayer and political speeches. You arrive at the festival and are having a wonderful time when all of a sudden you see a group of British solders begin firing guns into the crowd. Gunshots are going off all around you and people are screaming and running for cover. The shooting goes on for ten minutes. When it finally ends, 400 of your fellow Indians are dead, 1,200 wounded.
b) Quick write: Have the students take out their journals for a quick write. On the overhead, show the prompt: (8 minutes)
i) How would you feel being in this situation? What would be your response? Would you choose to fight back? What method would you use?
ii) After quick write, tell students that this topic, how one responds to injustice, will be explored in the next couple days. For now, we will not be sharing our responses.
2) Press Release (25 minutes)
a) Directions to the students:
i) It is January 30, 1948 and Gandhi has just been assassinated. We are all at the state capital for a Press Conference. I am the Press Secretary for Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. You are all reporters here on assignment. You must write a column for tomorrow’s newspaper about Gandhi and his life. You are here to ask me questions and find out more information for your article. There is a bowl full of questions being passed around. Each of you must ask the question you draw and can also ask any follow up questions. Keep good notes so you will be able to write an accurate column due tomorrow.
ii) Question and answer period (still writing questions and answers)
3) Explain Matrix (5 minutes)
a) Pass out matrix to all the students
b) Explain directions: (2 minutes)
i) This is a matrix that will help you organize your thoughts over the next few days as we learn more about Gandhi. Tonight review your notes from today and fill out the column labeled “press conference.” Write down in each box what you learned today about Gandhi’s background, his leadership style and skills, and his lasting effects. Some boxes may have more information than others. That is ok. We will be reviewing a number of different items over the next few days and each will help us piece together the story of Gandhi. As we review each item you will need to fill in this matrix with information gathered.
c) Answer any student questions (3 minutes)
4) Explain News Story assignment (5 minutes)
a) Each of you must go home tonight and, as reporters, put together a news column for tomorrow’s paper. This article should be 2-4 pages long. Please include information about Gandhi’s life as a child, his education and what motivated him to become involved in the fight for India’s Independence. Please also discuss why he believed in non-violent resistance and what influenced him to feel this way. [This is the transition to get students thinking about non-violence and civil disobedience. It is also a method of assessment.]
b) Article is due tomorrow at the beginning of class.
Notes: If class looks like it will run long, I will edit some of my responses during the press conference so they are shorter.
Day 2 Lesson
1) Grabber Activity
a) Quick write: What does civil disobedience and non-violent resistance look like? (5 minutes)
b) Write following question on the board for students to answer in their journal:
i) In answering this question, discuss what qualities you associate with civil disobedience and non-violent resistance. Feel free to use examples to explain your opinion.
c) Share responses: (10 minutes)
i) Ask students to take notes during our next activity in their notebooks.
ii) Have students raise their hands and share their definitions of civil disobedience. On the board I will draw a circle with the word civil disobedience in it. As students name qualities and their definitions, I will write them around the circle.
d) Show students 2 movie clips from Gandhi. (10 minutes)
i) Instructions for students
(1) Ask students to watch closely and write down any observations about how Gandhi is trying to accomplish his goal of Indian independence.
(2) Fill in matrix as they are watching movie clip. What does the clip tell us about Gandhi’s background, leadership, and lasting effects?
ii) First Clip:
(1) This clip shows Gandhi speaking to a group of followers during his "satyagraha" campaign in 1917 for rights of peasants on indigo plantations. His speech discusses why civil disobedience must be used instead of violence.
iii) Second Clip:
(1) This clip shows Gandhi leading followers on the Salt March. It ends with a gathering at the Indian Ocean where Gandhi picks up salt water and makes a speech to the crowd about non-violence.
e) Class Discussion (20 minutes)
i) Pose question to class: Is Gandhi displaying civil disobedience? If yes, is it effective for reaching his goal?
(1) Before having students answer, I will give them 1 or 2 minutes to write down their response on paper. Then, I will begin calling on students. I hope this will allow me to involve students who are less vocal during class discussions.
(2) Questions I will pose:
(a) Does our description of civil disobedience that we have on the board fit your description of Gandhi’s actions?
(b) Was the Salt March and act of civil disobedience? Explain.
(c) How did Gandhi use non-violence to fight for Indian independence?
(d) Is civil disobedience effective? Why or why not?
(e) Is there ever a time where violence is needed? Why?
2) Explain Homework (5 minutes) [This is a method of assessment]
a) Read pages 405-407 in the text book [Text book: Modern World History]
b) Students must write a one to two page thought piece answering the question:
(1) Based on our discussion of civil disobedience, was non-violence the best means to gain rights in India. If yes, why? If no, why not?
(2) Finish filling in matrix based on the movie clip we watched in class today.
Day 3 Lesson
1) Analyze abridged version of Gandhi’s essay “Non-Violence”
a) Pass out to all students the essay by Gandhi and the accompanying worksheet.
b) I will read the essay out loud to the class while they read along silently (5 minutes)
c) After I am done reading, I will work with the class to analyze the text
i) I will first ask the class to go through and individually answer these questions (5 minutes)
(1) What does this text tell us about Gandhi’s beliefs in non-violent resistance?
(2) Why did he hold these beliefs?
(3) Based on this essay, why does he feel non-violence is the best way to achieve independence in India?
(4) Do you agree or disagree with his viewpoint? Why or why not?
d) Class discussion (10 minutes)
i) Students will have the opportunity at this point to share their responses.
ii) I will allow students to share but I will not elicit a long group discussion at this point. My goal is to transition quickly into our last activity of the day, which will tie in some of the ideas brought up in Gandhi’s essay and this discussion.
2) Group activity
a) Split the class into four groups by counting off (5 minutes)
b) Hand each group a newspaper article that describes a group using non-violent resistance. Two groups will do each movement.
i) Greens in Australia
ii) Protest against Boise Cascade
c) Have group fill out ven-diagram. (10 minutes)
i) What does the group you read about in the article have in common with Gandhi’s beliefs?
ii) What differences do you see between the two groups?
d) Have groups share with the class their observations (10 minutes)
i) As they share, I will write the name of their group on the board along with the similarities and differences to Gandhi. Example below of how it will be set up.
Group Name Similarities Differences
3) Homework Assignment: (5 minutes) [This is a mode of assessment]
a) Have students write 2 to 3 paragraphs explaining the lasting effects Gandhi has had on our world. Using the article they read in class, students will use that group as a case study for Gandhi’s lasting effects. Students should refer back to the matrix we have worked on for the past three days, the textbook reading, the memoir and the accompanying worksheet and our class definition of civil disobedience.
Note: I gave the students an abridged version of Non-Violence because it was very long and parts of it would be very difficult for a 10th grader to read. I chose what I thought were the most important points Gandhi was trying to make about non-violence and its place in the fight for Indian Independence.
1. Brown, Judith M., Gandhi and Civil Disobedience, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1977.
2. Green, Martin, ed., Gandhi in India: In his own words, University Press of New England, Hanover, 1987.
3. Hutchins, Francis G., The Illusion of Permanence: British Imperialism in India, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1967.
4. Iyer, Raghavan, ed., The Moral and Political Writings of Mahatma Gandhi, vol. 1, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1986.
Overhead Day 1
How would you feel being in this situation? What would be your response? Would you choose to fight back? What method would you use to fight back?
Overhead Day 2
What does civil disobedience and non-violent resistance look like? In answering this question, discuss what qualities you associate with civil disobedience and non-violent resistance? Feel free to use examples to explain your opinion.
Press Conference Question and Answers
1. When was Gandhi born?
a. Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869 in Porbandar, India. Porbandar is in western India. [Point to map and show students where the city is located]. His full name is Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.
2. Please tell us what Gandhi was like as a child and about his parents?
a. Gandhi was a very shy and serious boy. His father was a local politician and his mother was a very religious Hindu.
3. Did Gandhi ever get married?
a. When Gandhi was 13 years old, he married his wife, Kasturba, who was also 13. They had an arranged marriage, which meant they did not meet each other until the day of the wedding.
4. Did Gandhi have any children?
a. Gandhi and his wife had four children.
5. Please tell us how Gandhi came to be a lawyer?
a. When he was in his mid-twenties, Gandhi decided to go to London for Law School. Gandhi was part of a particular caste in India. A caste is a social system that divides people into specific groups based on their hereditary, wealth, or religion. Gandhi was part of a caste that did not allow him to travel outside of India. However, he chose to disobey this rule and go anyways.
6. What did Gandhi do when he finished law school?
a. After law school, Gandhi came back to India to be with his family and practice law. However, when he came back home, he had a hard time finding a job. He was so shy that no one wanted to hire him.
7. How did Gandhi end up going to South Africa?
a. In 1893, Gandhi decided to go to South Africa and be a lawyer for an Indian firm. When he first went to South Africa, he did not take his family with him. However, in January 1887, he brought his family to South Africa from India.
8. How was Gandhi treated when he went to South Africa?
a. Gandhi faced a lot of discrimination in South Africa. Some of these instances included, being criticized for not removing his turban when he went to court, being thrown out of a first class train compartment because he was not white, and being beaten for refusing to move to the back of a stagecoach when a European Passenger wanted his seat.
9. Did Gandhi ever support the British Government?
a. Gandhi felt it his duty to support the British government during the Boer War, a war that lasted from 1899 to 1902 in South Africa between the British and the Boers. He helped by organizing and leading an Indian Ambulance Corps. This group would help the wounded British troops on the battlefield. He also led an ambulance corps to help British Soldiers during WWI.
10. Why did Gandhi believe in non-violent resistance?
a. Gandhi believed “Hate the sin not the sinner.” He thought everyone was connected spiritually and if we attack another then we are attacking ourselves. He felt force was wrong and only through non-violence and love could people live together in harmony.
11. What is civil disobedience and did Gandhi believe in it?
a. Civil disobedience is a non-violent refusal to obey certain laws in order to influence legislation or policy in a given country. Gandhi believed that civil disobedience was best way to fight for equal rights and Indian independence.
12. Did anything change in South Africa because of Gandhi?
a. In 1914 the government of South Africa made important concessions to Gandhi's demands, including recognition of Indian marriages and abolition of the poll tax for them.
13. Why did Gandhi leave South Africa?
a. Gandhi left South Africa because he felt he needed to be in India to help fight for their independence. He also felt that he had made great strides in South Africa and helped the Indians gain better treatment.
14. Gandhi always used the term Satyagraha. What does it mean?
a. The term Satyagraha, means "holding onto truth." Gandhi felt that fear and hatred would only make the discrimination by the colonists worse. So, he tried to fight against discrimination with courage and peace. He believed this showed how he and his followers were more courageous and true to themselves then the British army. Gandhi felt that for any army to use weapons against an innocent group of people shows its weakness. This idea of non-violent resistance is what Gandhi coined Satyagraha.
15. How did Gandhi spread his ideas to other Indians?
a. Gandhi wrote and edited the journal Indian Opinion, which promoted the idea of non-violent resistance. He wrote articles for many magazines and published many essays. He traveled around India giving speeches supporting non-violence. Gandhi also wrote an autobiography that allowed Indians to learn more about his ideas.
16. Why did Gandhi fast?
a. Gandhi felt that fasting was a process of purification and a way to seek forgiveness from God. He believed that through fasting one could hope to bring about reform. He also made clear that fasting was not a way to create attention but rather fasting was a prayer to God and a way for Indians to receive proper strength and proper wisdom in going through their struggles.
17. When was the first time Gandhi challenged the British Government in India?
a. Gandhi first challenged the British government in India in 1919 as a response to the Rowlatt Act. During WWI, India had supported and cooperated with the British. However, instead of receiving equal rights afterwards, the Rowlatt Act took away many of the Indians’ civil liberties. They continued to be treated very poorly. Gandhi called for a general strike of British goods.
18. Did the campaign Gandhi led in response to the Rowlett Act have a good outcome?
a. According to Gandhi it did not. Many Indians misunderstood Gandhi’s call for peaceful resistance and violence broke out across India during this campaign.
19. Please tell us about Gandhi’s nation wide campaign in 1920?
a. In 1920 Gandhi organized a nation wide campaign against the British Government for their bad treatment towards the Indians. He urged people not to pay taxes, not to buy alcohol, since the money went towards the British government, and he urged people to make their own clothes and not buy English made clothing.
20. Was anyone jailed during 1920 campaign led by Gandhi against the British?
a. The campaign went on for over two years. By January 1922 over 30,000 Indians had been put in jail for their non-violent actions against the British. In March of 1922, Gandhi was arrested and put in jail for 22 months.
21. Were there religious tensions in India Gandhi tried to ease?
a. There was a lot of tension between the Muslims and Hindus in India. Although Gandhi was a Hindu, he felt that there should be unity among all Indians. To try and ease the tension, Gandhi fasted many times. During these fasts, he would plead for unity, religious tolerance, and love for one another.
22. Tell us more about the Salt March Gandhi led?
a. The Salt March was one famous protests Gandhi led. It took place in 1930. The British government had made it illegal for Indians to make their own salt. This made many Indians very upset because it hurt the poor who could not afford to buy salt from the British. Gandhi marched 240 miles in 24 days and was accompanied by thousands of marchers. For weeks after the march, thousands were arrested, beaten and killed, but no one fought back. They also used non-violent resistance. Gandhi was also arrested and thrown in jail.
23. What was the outcome of the Salt March?
a. The British Government agreed to meet with Gandhi in 1931 and the British agreed to release the prisoners arrested at the march from jail. The march also convinced many countries, like the United States, that there was moral legitimacy to India's cause. Gandhi also became Time magazine's man of the year for 1930 and gained world wide coverage for his cause in India.
24. Did Gandhi support WWII?
a. Gandhi believed that Hitler needed to be defeated. However, he believed that the Jews and the British could accomplish this task through non-violence. He said he could not support a war and killing.
25. Did Gandhi believe in equal rights for women?
a. Gandhi became a spokesperson for women's rights. He felt that women were naturally more non-violent. He even called them the better and nobler of the two sexes. He felt that women had greater courage than men and that they should be educated just as men were.
26. Who killed Gandhi?
a. Gandhi was assassinated by an angry Hindu this evening, January 30, 1948 at a prayer meeting.
By: M.K. Gandhi
The world is weary of hate. We see the fatigue overcoming the Western nations. We see that this song of hate has not benefited humanity. Let it be the privilege of India to turn a new leaf and set a lesson to the world.
The religion of non-violence is not meant merely for the rishis and saints. It is meant for the common people as well. Non-violence is the law of our species as violence is the law of the brute. The spirit lies dormant in the brute and he knows no law but that of physical might. The dignity of man requires obedience to a higher law-to the strength of the spirit.
You might of course say that there can be no non-violent rebellion and there has been none known to history. Well, it is my ambition to provide an instance, and it is my dream that my country may win its freedom through non-violence. And, I would like to repeat to the world times without number, that I will not purchase my country’s freedom at the cost of non-violence. My marriage to non-violence is such an absolute thing that I would rather commit suicide than be deflected from my position. I have not mentioned truth in this connection, simply because truth cannot be expressed excepting by non-violence.
The accumulated experience of the past thirty years, fills me with the greatest hope that in the adoption of non-violence lies the future of India and the world. It is the most harmless and yet equally effective way of dealing with the political and economic wrongs of the downtrodden portion of humanity. I have known from early youth that non-violence is not a cloistered virtue to be practised by the individual for his peace and tinal salvation, but it is a rule of conduct for society if it is to live consistently with human dignity and make progress towards the attainment of peace for which it has been yearning for ages past.
Non-violence is ‘not a resignation from all real fighting against wickedness’.
On the contrary, the non-violence of my conception is a more active and
real fight against wickedness than retaliation whose very nature is to
increase wickedness. I contemplate, a mental and therefore a moral opposition
to immoralities. I seek entirely to blunt the edge of the tyrant’s sword,
not by putting up against it a sharper-edged weapon, but by disappointing
his expectation that I would be offering physical resistance. The resistance
of the soul that I should offer would elude him. It would at first dazzle
him and at last compel recognition from him, which recognition would not
humiliate him but would uplift him. It may be urged that this is an ideal
state. And so it is.
1) What does this text tell us about Gandhi’s beliefs in non-violent resistance?
2) Why did Gandhi hold these beliefs?
3) Why does he feel non-violence is the best way to achieve independence?
4) Do you agree or disagree with his viewpoint?
Course Context: World History 10th grade class
Period: 55 minutes
Population: Very diverse, no majority population. Population includes Black, White, Hispanic, and Asian students. College Prep class.
Timing: Half way through the course. At this point students will have studied some of the major democratic and liberal ideals that come out of the Enlightenment and nineteenth century. Students will be pulling on this knowledge as we work through this unit.
Essential Questions for Course:
1) Is justice “by any means” still justice?
2) How important are individual leaders in shaping a movements and contributing to the success or failure of a movement?
3) How can the oppressed use the ideas of the oppressors to become free?
Unit Topic: Challenges to Imperialism: Kenya, a case study
1) How did Kenyatta’s leadership and beliefs shape the Kenya independence movement?
2) How did Kenyatta use European ideas of democracy and liberty to fight imperialism in Kenya?
1) Skills: Students will be able to read and analyze a variety of primary sources (an allegory, a speech, and a manifesto) to understand a political movement.
2) Content: Students will be able to understand and explain the ideological motivations for Kenya’s independence movement and relate those ideas to Western ideas about democracy and liberty.
The previous week students will have begun studying Imperialism. In the previous week, we will have discussed the major motivations and causes for Imperialism. At the end of that week (just before this unit begins), students will have done a primary source analysis of Rudyard Kipling’s “White Man’s Burden.” To help them with this analysis, students will have filled out a graphic organizer. This 3-day unit is designed to introduce students to challenges to Imperialism through a case study of Kenya. After this 3-day unit students will continue to work on challenges to Imperialism in different countries and the results of those challenges.
Daily Questions: Who was the Gentleman of the Jungle? Kipling
1) Students will be able to analyze “The Gentleman of the Jungle” as an allegory of resistance to Imperialism.
2) Students will be able to compare and contrast Kipling’s and Kenyatta’s descriptions of Imperialism in their literary texts (“White Man’s Burden” and “The Gentleman and the Jungle”).
1) Copies of “The Gentleman and the Jungle” for each student
2) Graphic organizers for the “Gentleman and the Jungle” and different countries’ independence movements in Africa
3) Overheads of each of the graphic organizers for today and a copy of the graphic organizer from the previous Kipling lesson
4) Additional overheads for the students to use in class.
10 Minutes Grabber: Pass out Kenyatta’s “The Gentleman and the Jungle” and do a “cold read” as a class.
15-20 Minutes Begin discussion of the allegory:
? What is an allegory? What are the characteristics of an allegory?
? Who are the different characters? Are there good and evil characters? Which are which and how do you know that?
? Is there a moral to the story? Can you find a particular line in the story that sums up a moral or message? Which line would you choose and why?
? Context: This is written by a leader of Kenya’s Independence Movement before Kenya became independent. Kenya was a British colony until 1963.
15 Minutes Work individually to fill out graphic organizer (see attached).
10-15 Minutes (remainder of class period; may finish discussion next day) Come back together as a class and discuss what they discovered about the source. Record responses from graphic organizer onto an overhead copy so that students can compile their answers. How does Kenyatta use the allegory to talk about Independence? What is he saying about Imperialism? Take out graphic organizers on “White Man’s Burden.” How are Kipling’s and Kenyatta’s descriptions of Imperialism different and similar? Do they have anything in common?
Homework: Read pg. 517-520 in your text book, Modern World History: Patterns of Interactions, McDougal Littell. Use handout to keep track of what you learn (see attached).
Summary of “The Gentleman of the Jungle” by Jomo Kenyatta
? A gentleman has a hut.
? It rains heavily one night
? An elephant comes to the tent and asks for shelter.
? The gentleman refuses the elephant because his hut is too small to accomodate the elelphant.
? The elephant promises to only put in head in the hut.
? The man agrees.
? The elephants does take over the entire hut and kicks the man out.
? The man is angry and demands justice.
? There is a trial but the jury is all animals/friends of the elephant.
? No one listens to the man.
? The elephant bribes the jury and uses imperialist justifications to justify his occupation of the hut (i.e., the space in the tent was not being used properly).
? The jury agrees with the elephant and gives the man’s hut to him.
? The man builds a bigger, better hut.
? The hut attracts all the animals again.
? The animals kick the man out but then begin fighting with each other over the hut.
? The man leaves and waits for night fall.
? After nightfall, when all the animals are still in the hut arguing, the man sets the hut on fire, killing all the animals.
? The allegory ends with the man saying freedom has a high cost, but is worth the expense.
Day 1 Handouts (also includes Kipling worksheet from previous unit)
Words used to describe them Their Actions View/Bias of author toward the group
“The Gentleman and the Jungle” Organizer:
“The Gentleman and the Jungle”
Words used to describe them Their Actions View/Bias of author toward the group
The Animals of the Jungle
How did different African nations become independent?
African Nation Colonizing Country When the nation became independent? Who led the movements for independence? Methods the movements used to become independent? How did the nation finally become independent?
Daily Question: What ideas about democracy does Kenyatta use to justify fighting for Kenya’s independence?
Objective: Students will be able to connect Kenyatta’s speech to Western ideals about democracy and liberalism.
1) Copies of Kenyatta’s speech for each student
2) Overhead of picture of Kenyatta
10 minutes Grabber: Think-Pair-Share on the following quote:
“True democracy has no color distinction. It does not choose between black and white”
5 Minutes What is liberty and democracy? Discuss as a class and record responses on the board.
5-10 minutes Review text book and their homework (go over their answers as a class)
15-20 minutes Lecture to fill out some of the details of Kenyatta’s life, leadership, and the role of Mau Mau in Kenya’s fight for independence.
5 Minutes What is liberty and democracy? Discuss as a class and record responses on the board.
15-25 minutes Kenyatta’s Speech: “The Kenya Africa Union is Not the Mau Mau” (1952)
? Read Kenyatta’s speech
? Underline all parts of his speech that refer to democracy and liberal ideals of equality
? Form inside/outside circles to discuss what they thought of Kenyatta’s speech. Answer the following questions for each other:
1) What is Kenyatta’s definition of democracy?
2) What are Kenyatta’s complaints about how his people are being treated by the British.
3) What is Kenyatta’s goal for his people?
4) Is this connected to any other movements you’ve studied before, either in this class or in another class? If so, how?
Homework: Pass out copies of selections of the KANU Manifesto. Read the manifesto for homework tonight.
Modern History Sourcebook:
The Kenya Africa Union is Not the Mau Mau, 1952
Speech at the Kenya African Union Meeting at Nyeri, July 26, 1952
... I want you to know the purpose of K.A.U. It is the biggest purpose the African has. It involves every African in Kenya and it is their mouthpiece which asks for freedom. K.A.U. is you and you are the K.A.U. If we unite now, each and every one of us, and each tribe to another, we will cause the implementation in this country of that which the European calls democracy. True democracy has no colour distinction. It does not choose between black and white. We are here in this tremendous gathering under the K.A.U. flag to find which road leads us from darkness into democracy. In order to find it we Africans must first achieve the right to elect our own representatives. That is surely the first principle of democracy. We are the only race in Kenya which does not elect its own representatives in the Legislature and we are going to set about to rectify this situation. We feel we are dominated by a handful of others who refuse to be just. God said this is our land. Land in which we are to flourish as a people. We are not worried that other races are here with us in our country, but we insist that we are the leaders here, and what we want we insist we get. We want our cattle to get fat on our land so that our children grow up in prosperity; we do not want that fat removed to feed others. He who has ears should now hear that K.A.U. claims this land as its own gift from God and I wish those who arc black, white or brown at this meeting to know this. K.A.U. speaks in daylight. He who calls us the Mau Mau is not truthful. We do not know this thing Mau Mau. We want to prosper as a nation, and as a nation we demand equality, that is equal pay for equal work. Whether it is a chief, headman or labourer be needs in these days increased salary. He needs a salary that compares with a salary of a European who does equal work. We will never get our freedom unless we succeed in this issue. We do not want equal pay for equal work tomorrow-we want it right now. Those who profess to be just must realize that this is the foundation of justice. It has never been known in history that a country prospers without equality. We despise bribery and corruption, those two words that the European repeatedly refers to. Bribery and corruption is prevalent in this country, but I am not surprised. As long as a people are held down, corruption is sure to rise and the only answer to this is a policy of equality. If we work together as one, we must succeed.
Our country today is in a bad state for its land is full of fools-and fools in a country delay the independence of its people. K.A.U. seeks to remedy this situation and I tell you now it despises thieving, robbery and murder for these practices ruin our country. I say this because if one man steals, or two men steal, there are people sitting close by lapping up information, who say the whole tribe is bad because a theft has been committed. Those people are wrecking our chances of advancement. They will prevent us getting freedom. If I have my own way, let me tell you I would butcher the criminal, and there are more criminals than one in more senses than one. The policeman must arrest an offender, a man who is purely an offender, but lie must not go about picking up people with a small horn of liquor in their hands and march them in procession with his fellow policemen to Government and say he has got a Mau Mau amongst the Kikuyu people. The plain clothes man who hides in the hedges must, I demand, get the truth of our words before be flies to Government to present them with false information. I ask this of them who arc in the meeting to take heed of my words and do their work properly and justly. . . .
. . . Do not be scared of the few policemen under those trees who are holding their rifles high in the air for you to see. Their job is to seize criminals, and we shall save them a duty today. I will never ask you to be subversive but I ask you to be united, for the day of Independence is the day of complete unity and if we unite completely tomorrow, our independence will come tomorrow. This is the day for you to work bard for your country, it is not words but deeds that count and the deeds I ask for come from your pockets. The biggest subscribers to K.A.U. are in this order. First, Thomson's Falls branch, second, Elburgon branch and third Gatundu branch. Do you, in Nyeri branch, want to beat them? Then let us see your deeds come forth.
I want to touch on a number of points, and I ask you for the hundredth time to keep quiet whilst I do this. We want self-government, but this we will never get if we drink beer. It is harming our country and making people fools and encouraging crime. It is also taking all our money. Prosperity is a prerequisite of independence and, more important, the beer we are drinking is harmful to our birthrate. You sleep with a woman for nothing if you drink beer. It causes your bones to weaken and if you want to increase the population of the Kikuyu you must stop drinking.
. . . K.A.U. is not a fighting union that uses fists and weapons. If any of you here think that force is good, I do not agree with you: remember the old saying that he who is hit with a rungu returns, but he who is bit with justice never comes back. I do not want people to accuse us falsely-that we steal and that we are Mau Mau. I pray to you that we join hands for freedom and freedom means abolishing criminality. Beer harms us and those who drink it do us harm and they may be the so-called Mau Mau. Whatever grievances we have, let us air them here in the open. The criminal does not ,want freedom and land-he wants to line his own pocket. Let us therefore demand our rights justly. The British Government has discussed the land problem in Kenya and we hope to have a Royal Commission to this country to look into the land problem very shortly. When this Royal Commission comes, let us show it that we are a good peaceful people and not thieves and robbers.
from F. D. Cornfield, The Origins and Growth of Mau Mau, Sessional Paper No. 5 of 1959-1960 (Nairobi: 1960), pp. 301-308.
Daily Question: Do people have the right to rebel?
Daily Objective: Students will be able to explain how the KANU Manifesto relates to democratic ideals.
1) Copies of the Declaration of Independence
2) Overheads of Declaration of Independence and selections of the KANU Manifesto
7 Minutes Grabber: Think-Pair-Share about the following quote:
“It is a misnomer to say that Kenya is fighting to ‘gain’ her independence or that Britain would ‘give’ the people of Kenya freedom.”
8 Minutes Share with rest of class what your partner’s response was to the quote.
10 Minutes How do a people become free? Talk as a class to create a list of methods to freedom (pull on other African nations examples from Monday’s homework, American revolution, slavery, etc.)
What, if anything, justifies the violence of the Mau Mau movement?
Are their alternatives to violence? What does the KANU Manifesto suggest (transition into discussion of Manifesto)?
15 Minutes ? Review the KANU Manifesto
? Break up into groups of four by numbering off in class (there should be 8 groups)
Now number each member of the group either 1, 2, 3, or 4.
All number 1s are facilitators of discussion
All number 2s are materials gatherers
All number 3s are task setters and time monitors
All number 4s are recorders
? Two groups each will answer one of the following assigned questions:
1) What ideals of liberty and democracy does the KANU Manifesto demonstrate?
2) Why do they believe their fight is justified?
3) What demands are they making?
4) How do they think they can make their country eventually successful and independent?
? Record responses on an overhead
? Share responses with the rest of the class
15-20 Minutes ? U.S. Declaration of Independence
? Give copies of the Declaration to each group. Have each group answer the same question as before only now using the Declaration of Independence
? Share responses with class
? Class discussion of relationship between American Revolution and Kenya.
3 Minutes ? Closing question to think about: What does it mean to be free? Homework: Please bring in a picture (any visual—you can draw it yourself, a photograph, a print, etc.) that shows what it means to you to be free.
Kenya African National Union (KANU)
The KANU Manifesto for Independence, Social Democracy and Stability:
Duty to One’s Country is Duty to God.
“Let unity be the guiding star in all your decisions. Anything
that divides the people must be avoided. Unity of all Africans is
our only weapon. Without it we are doomed.”
—Jomo Kenyatta, Father of the nation to all African leaders.
[Selections from the Manifesto]
INDEPENDENCE AND UNITY.
The very first aim of the Kenya African National Union is to fight relentlessly
to achieve and maintain independence for the people of Kenya. On
this hang all the other aims and objects of the union; for without freedom
and independence form imperialist rule and exploitation our ideal to reconstruct
Kenya into a country free from oppression, and a home free from hunger,
sickness and ignorance will never be realized. The welfare of our
people, their standard of living, wealth and health, education and culture
cannot be treated with priority by the imperialists. The part the
people of Kenya must play in the present day world in working for peace
and development of mankind remains undone due to a power which refuses
to allow them their full human stature with the right to self-determination.
Independence, which alone can assure us our rightful place in the world
must, therefore, be regained.
It is a misnomer to say that Kenya is fighting to “gain” her independence or that Britain would “give” the people of Kenya freedom. Our freedom and independence was taken from us by forces which cannot but be termed violent. We shall, without any further delay regain it. This we shall do by means more civilized and non-violent. KANU, in dedicating itself to the accomplishment of this task becomes more than an ordinary political party. It is a national movement vis-à-vis the British Government, the Colonial power ruling Kenya. KANU (as a national movement) is something crystallized out of the feelings, wishes and demands of the people of Kenya. It is the manifestation of their nationalistic feeling, and the embodiment of their patriotism. KANU is the vanguard under whose banner the poor, the sick, the illiterate, who go to form the majority of the indigenous community of Kenya, must rally to regain their independence and freedom from social, political, and economical domination by those vested interests which are founded in imperialism and colonialism. KANU’s main goal, as a national movement, is independence NOW.
. . . . . . .
FORCES AND FORMS BEHIND THE KENYA NATIONAL MOVEMENT:
There have been many land-marks in the great battle against
colonialism and the human injustices which go under the name of imperialism.
It will be generally agreed that a most important year is 1905 when Japan
defeated Russia in the Russo-Japanese war and proved to the Asian world
that they myth of white supremacy could be exploded. This victory
was applauded in all the countries of Asia including India where at that
time the national movement for freedom against British domination was gathering
momentum. The Japanese example encouraged the leaders to embark upon
mass non-co-operation and civil disobedience against the rulers in India,
until independence was regained in 1947, thus the British Crown lost its
largest jewel. the Empire on which the sun never set was declining;
colonialism was dying. But the British and other colonial powers
who thrive on the same system still held on to the “black” countries until
Ghana broke the chain of slavery in 1956. All African must praise
Ghanaian nationalism for providing new inspiration throughout African.
Today the light of freedom is burning all over Africa, fanned and refueled
by world opinion. Colonialism dies hard; but it must today reckon
with the African resurgence and determination.
In Kenya, this resurgence and determination was introduced to the world with a bang when uncontrolled violence broke out in 1952. In many parts of the world today the word “Kenya” is synonymous with the world “Mau Mau.” Whatever may be said by the settlers or the British Government. Africans believe that the Mau Mau movement was the child of economic, social and political frustration arising from British rule and white settler domination. Kenya Africans had agitated strongly, for advancement before the outbreak of Mau Mau. The Kenya African Union did not leave a stone unturned in the struggle to attain the African people’s demands. We cannot deny, however, that a great impetus was given to the national movement for independence, by the events of and after 1952. The Emergency focused the attention of the British public and people throughout the world on the plight of the Africans and the problems confronting the country. Kenya was placed on the world map. Freedom loving people everywhere began to say that force or repression were unlikely to produce a lasting solution. Confronted with this national awakening, no government in Britain was prepared to dance to the tune of settler demands. It was realized that the indigenous people of Kenya were not ready to stop at anything to regain their independence.
Injustices in the form of expropriation, racialism, economic exploitation of African workers and peasants, and poor social services have been, more or less the forces that go to make up the Kenya national freedom movement. Kenya has never enjoyed a status of social and political order based on justice. It has never been the aim of the ruling power to ensure, social, economic or political democracy for the very reason that an imperialist power cannot give priority to the economic and social welfare of those they rule. Kenya’s indigenous people must win independence for their own good.
Thus the forces behind the national movement have taken different and several forms. Conferences have be held, resolutions passed and delegations sent to England. No one remains blind tot he fact that all these have resulted in some reforms but failed to meet the full aspirations of the people. In fact, the servants of the ruling power have always announced that the situation was under “complete control,” thereby showing that any advancement was being conceded merely at the sweet will of Britain.
KANU believes that independence has never been handed over by any imperialist power on a silver platter. It is won: and this is because it was never lost voluntarily. Equally important is the fact that independence will always be dynamic, it will ask the people of Kenya to “do and sacrifice until the cherished freedom we demand trickles from the imperialist hands.” The form of any independence movement must be dynamic; it must make it difficult or impossible for the imperialist power to continue its government.
. . . . . . . .
THE KANU MANIFESTO IN BRIEF
KANU BEFORE INDEPENDENCE
1. We want independence and release of Kenyatta now.
2. KANU’s main goal, as is the goal of all indigenous people of Kenya, is independence NOW. Imperialism under which Kenya suffers today is detrimental to the interests of the African people. Because imperialism and Colonialism are long dead and buried in other parts of the world, and in view of the fact that world opinion is with us, we are certain to win.
3. Mere Conferences, resolutions and delegations to England alone will never bring independence. Kenyans must be ready to sacrifice all to attain freedom.
4. In this effort unity will be vital. Political parties may be part of the working of a democracy that Kenya will adopt after independence. For the attainment of that independence, however, what is required is a solid national movement. KANU is the vanguard of that movement, and is to take new steps to bring unity between all splinter groups. The leader and father of our nation—Jomo Kenyatta—has fully endorsed this position.
5. Immigrant groups who have Kenya’s interests at heart are welcome to identify themselves effectively with our struggle. KANU opposes their efforts to act as a group to impede our independence. If these negative efforts are persisted in, KANU will ask the African people to resort to a “Quit Kenya” movement.
6. We believe in the fundamental rights of the individual and these will be guaranteed by the Constitution drawn up by a Constituent Assembly. Clamors for a Bill of Rights, privileges and paper safeguards can never be a substitute for racial harmony which is essential.
7. Modern civilized standards will be maintained. Kenya will not, however, base its future on the pretentious civilization witnessed among a section of the so-called civilized people.
8. The technical foundations of a modern civilization are indispensable for Kenya’s advancement. In this advancement what is worthwhile in the so-called western civilization will form a part of our Africanism and form one of the ingredients in the synthesis that will form the basis or our African personality.
9. The individual must enjoy political as well as economic freedom. KANU will ensure employment, protect the citizen from long hours of work and ascertain a minimum wage which could afford the worker clothing for himself and his family, decent food, education for his children, a little comfort and leisure.
10. KANU shall work for the speedy economic reconstruction of Kenya. It will ensure that the means of production, distribution and exchange are under the best obtainable system. Each citizen will be asked to contribute as much as he is capable for only then will he have a right to as much as he needs.
11. The social policy of KANU will be designed to foster among the peoples of Kenya the need for a state based on equality of opportunity and the welding together of all races and communities inhabiting Kenya. The myth of the “master race” has no place here.
12. KANU does favor state assistance for educational and medical institutions confined to members of a single race or community. The state shall be homogenous.
13. KANU knows that nothing (least of all building a new nation) can be achieved without hard work. The people of Kenya must come into the Twentieth Century by their sweat and toil. Both public and private enterprise, local or from overseas, have a sure place in Kenya’s development.
14. Wages shall not be paid on the basis of color, and KANU will work for a greater enlargement of opportunities for African employment. Trade Unions have come to stay and have an important role to ply in the preservation of a democratic society in Kenya.
15. Workers shall be assured of family life at their places of work so that their skill, industry and well-being of their families are not interfered with through migratory labor.
16. Land reforms that are necessary for the development of Kenya into a prosperous welfare state must be left to the unfettered discretion of the future free government of the country.
17. It is true that there are genuine grievances of the African people as regards land. It is also true that there are large expanses of land in the highlands and elsewhere, while land hunger among the indigenous people is great. KANU’s foremost problem, then, will be resettlement under a land reform program.
18. Resettlement shall not, at any rate, be at the cost of the high standard of agriculture already attained and which must continue.
19. A committee will be appointed to go into the squatter problem and to suggest best means of meeting this problem, with the object of ensuring security and a reasonable standard of living for the squatter and agricultural laborer.
20. To ensure resettlement it may be necessary for the state to appropriate land from those who now own large square miles. There shall be compensation for property on the land in the case of such expropriation.
21. KANU will most emphatically not deprive any of the pastoral peoples of their land. It will push ahead development plans in these areas to raise production so as to ensure the raising of the standard of those people, so far neglected by their present government.
22. In KANU’s development plan, hitherto undeveloped parts, for example Masai grazing lands, will have priority. The Masai and the people of the Northern Frontier and parts of the Coast and Rift Valley provinces have had the least consideration in present government’s educational and advancement schemes. KANU will spare no efforts to see that the balance of development in Kenya is even.
23. There shall be a comprehensive plan to revolutionize African agriculture and to stop African agriculture development being subordinated to that of the white settler.
24. KANU shall strive to make education available to all children of Kenya for the first 7 years. We shall treat the fight against ignorance as an emergency. Education shall be liberal and not impeded by devious means such as “eliminating” examinations. Technical and higher education will be prominent in the plan. KANU appeals to all educated Africans to come forward and lead their people into freedom.
25. KANU’s position as regards Jomo Kenyatta and other detained leaders is clear. KANU condemns arbitrary detention or restriction without trial and will not rest until all sons of Kenya so detained or restricted are set free.
26. Legislation denying the African people their rights and restricting their freedom shall go.
27. There shall be democratization in the Local Government institutions and unification of the system. Racialism as the basis of Local Government system will go.
28. Agents of “indirect rule” ... must be replaced by a democratic and representative system.
29. To KANU, localization in the Civil Service means no more than Africanization. At the same time we shall do all in our power to induce necessary expatriate Civil Servants to remain with us.
30. Our approach to foreign affairs will be on the lines of positive Independence and non-alignment with military or power blocks. The African personality must be the basis of our approach to peace and human welfare. Neutrality which would compromise the truth is not our policy. We reserve the right to oppose or support all issues on their merit.
31. Foreign military bases cannot be anything but a threat to Kenya’s positive independence and security. KANU therefore categorically rejects the idea of a military base in Kenya and will work towards the removal of any base that might exist when it comes to power.
The Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies
In CONGRESS, July 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America,
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,
that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. That
to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving
their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any Form
of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the
People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying
its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form,
as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably
the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism,
it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and
to provide new Guards for their future security.
Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain [George III] is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained, and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies, without the consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign
to our constitution and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to
their Acts of pretended Legislation:
? For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
? For protecting them by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
? For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
? For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
? For depriving us in many cases of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
? For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
? For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
? For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
? For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries
to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with
circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous
ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms. Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren.
? We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us.
? We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here.
? We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence.
They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by the authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare.
That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent
States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown,
and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain
is and ought to be totally dissolved;
and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
Athens: the Emergence of Democratic Ideas
UNIT QUESTION: How did ancient Athenians influence modern western government?
OVERVIEW: This three-day lesson will be early in the school year in a tenth grade world history course. Students will define democracy through prior knowledge and textbook assistance. They will then learn about Athenian government, the earliest use of democracy and the individuals who developed its use. Students will then engage in an activity to formulate understanding of Anthenian government, playing “The Rock Game.” They will learn about the emerging philosophy of the time, as developed by Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle with the use of a primary source. They will create a timeline to understand how the events progressed. They will finally relate the struggles in democracy to the current events in Serbia.
Lesson One: Defining Democracy
1. Assess prior knowledge through teacher led discussion (15 minutes)
2. Think-pair-share -> Defining “democracy” (15 minutes)
3. Lecture/Note-taking (10 minutes)
4. Assessment (5 minutes)
Lesson Two: Athenian Assembly and Primary Source
1. Review and Assess (5 minutes)
2. Rock Game-Get the sense of Assembly, Athenian democracy (20 minutes)
3. Analyze primary source, part I (20 minutes)
Lesson Three: Complete Primary Source and Create Timeline
1. Analyze primary souce, part II (20 minutes)
2. Timeline (art activity) (20 minutes)
3. Read aloud(5 minutes)
1. Explain the concept of democracy.
2. Identify where the idea of democracy first emerged.
3. Identify the key figures in the ancient Greek political and philosophical development of the idea of democracy, and why those figures were important (read: Solon, Cleisthenes, Pericles).
4. Demonstrate familiarity with certain terms: government, monarchy, aristocracy, democracy (representative and direct), citizen
Student Demographic: 10th grade regular level Modern World History
class; of the 28 students, there are 9 Hispanic, 7 white, 6 Asian, 4 African
American, and 2 foreign students. Five are "resource" or have special
educational needs, and four are ELL.
The teacher will need:
For Athenian Assembly/Rock Game
? Black and white rocks
For Timeline Activity
? Plain, white, legal size paper
? Colored pencils/markers
The Students will need:
? Textbook: Modern World History, McDougal Littell, 1999
? Writing utensil
Lesson One: Defining Democracy
1. Assess prior knowledge through teacher led discussion (15 minutes)
2. Think-pair-share -> Defining “democracy” (15 minutes)
3. Lecture/Note-taking (10 minutes)
4. Assessment (5 minutes)
1. Establish students' prior knowledge: (15 minutes)
Lead class discussion. Ask students what they remember from middle school history. Do they remember learning about Egypt? Persia? How were these civilizations ruled? What type of leadership did they have?
Lead students in recalling that these ancient civilizations that they have already studied were mostly monarchies or an aristocracies, absolute, singular rulers.
Ask, what is monarchy? Have class define. Write their definition on the board. Have students look up the answer in their text glossary. Rewrite definition according to new information.
Ask, what is aristocracy? Have class define. Write their definition on the board. Have students look up the answer in their text glossary. Rewrite definition. Rewrite definition according to new information.
This will be the first time the class will do a think-pair-share. Establish norms. Explain the process.
"I will give you something to think about, an idea, maybe a person or a place. You should then think to yourself, maybe even writing down a few key words that come to mind. Then get together with another person and share your thoughts. Both of you should speak. Tell your partner your thoughts about what they have shared with you. Next, we will return to large group, and each pair should explain to the class what they have discussed as a pair.” Now assess: ask in general who, or name specific student to explain what we are going to do first, second, etc. This may clear up any uncertainty. Ask if there are any questions.
"We are going to do a think-pair-share right now. Clear your mind
and then think about this… (say the following out loud AND write on the
What kind or type of government do we have in our country?
What are the names you can think of to describe it?
“Take a couple of minutes for thought. Write down any key words that came to mind." Wait. Give time.
“Ok, now you are going to pair up with with a partner and share your ideas.” Point out specifically which student will work with which student as this will be the beginning of the school year and norms need to be set.
"Now, before we all share as a group, I want to do another Think-Pair-Share. Think for a minute about the word "democracy." What does the word mean? What does it mean to you? Write anything down that might help you remember your thoughts." (Give a minute.)
"Now pair up and share your thoughts about democracy with your partner."
“Let’s come together as a class to define what we think democracy is.” Write students definitions of the board. Encourage students to write notes in their notebooks.
Explain ancient Greek etymology:
Demos = people
Kratos = rule/authority
"Now, knowing these ancient Greek terms, what does democracy mean?" Assess.
Defining the people in a democracy through discussion:
Ask students who can participate in democracy? Have them come up with the people that should be allowed. Indicate that in ancient Greece, in the first democracy, not everyone could participate.
"The ancient Greeks were the first people to come up with the idea of democracy. As you learned in 7th grade, civilizations prior to that lived under absolute rulers. For example, in Egypt, the Pharaoh was the leader. And, until this time, Greeks were ruled by a monarch, or king. The ideas of democracy, or that the people should rule themselves, emerged from thinkers in two ancient Greek cities, particularly and first in Athens.”
“I’m going to tell you now about ancient Greece and how this whole idea of democracy came about. Your have two jobs: one, to listen, and two, to take notes. I have written some key terms on the board. While I’m telling you about ancient Greece, I will talk about these terms. Please write these terms down and then explain them, define them, write why they are important. Any questions?” (Assess)
“Greek civilization began in about 2000 BC. Who knows what it
means when we say that something happened in a year B.C.? (Check
for understanding.) The year one, or zero, is the year Christians
believe Jesus Christ was born. This is the beginning of our calendar.
Therefore, 500 B.C. means five hundred years before that, or before the
year one. What about 600 B.C.. When was that? Before
or after 500 B.C.?” (Check for understanding. Use chalkboard
to illustrate timeline pictorially.)
“In the year 564 BC, a man named Solon was the leader in Athens, Greece. At that time, the government was an aristocracy, which meant that the elite or nobles ruled. Also at this time, the economy, or the money, and the government and politics were a big mess. Solon created laws to encourage trade and manufacturing which helped the economy. But one of Solon’s most important contributions to democracy was that in 594 B.C. he freed those people enslaved because of their financial debt. You see, while the economy was really bad, people sold themselves into slavery to pay off their debt. So Solon freed these people, thereby increasing the number of citizens. But a citizen in ancient Greece was not the same thing as a citizen of the United States. Who is a citizen here?” (Assess) “Well, in ancient Athens, a citizen was an adult male who owned land. He was someone who had certain rights or responsibilities to the community. One of a citizen’s responsibilities was to attend the Assembly. The assembly was a big meeting where all the citizens citizens would vote about particular issues and choose their own representatives to serve in the Council. The Council, elected by the citizens, did the ordinary government things when the Assembly wasn’t in session.”
“But, even though the people were ruling Athens, it was still only the elite. Solon did try, in many ways, to include more people in the government. In addition to freeing those enslaved by debt, he established four categories of citizenship based on wealth, not heredity. Now, this might sound bad to us, that the rich people get to rule, but at least this guy was trying to include more people! So, even if, historically your family wasn't part of the ruling class, if you had money and property, you could now be a part of the government, whereas before Solon, you couldn't. In theory, power wasn’t passed through the families. It was determined by how much money you had. What is it again when the rich rule?” (Assess: aristocracy) “Of these four categories by wealth, only the upper three could hold office, but all free, adult males could vote. However, like we said, no women, slaves or foreigners could vote. And at this time, even after he freed some of the slaves, they still made up roughly 1/3 of the population. And again, the actual citizens, those who had a say in the government, still only made up 1/10 of the population.”
“Solon also reformed the court system. Who serves on a jury in US courts?” (Assess: the people) “Well, Solon began that. He was the first to establish courts where the citizens serve as jurors. So, in this way, people were participating in their own government. Remember, in some ways this was still an aristocracy. Only the rich were the ones allowed to hold office. But, in a sense, the stage was set for democracy.”
“So Solon started some of it. Then another guy came along, and he wanted even MORE people to participate. His name was Cleisthenes (KLYS*thuh*NEEZ) and he ruled Athens starting in 508 B.C.. Some people consider this guy the original founder of Athenian democracy. Instead of just allowing certain people to submit laws, he allowed all citizens to submit laws for passage, and remember there is a new definition for citizen. Now the people could participate in their democracy, or rule by the people.”
“The next leader was Pericles. He led Athens from 461-429 B.C. This time was known as the Golden Age of Greece. Pericles held public debates in Athens, and the city and its government truly evolved into a direct democracy, not a representative democracy like we have in the US. He began the tradition of paying jurors. These juries were not small, like they are here, now. They had between 201 and 501 jurors, and people loved to argue! They would debate and debate. Even though democracy was progressing, the people were still being led by the elite. Pericles himself was an aristocrat with great prestige. ”
Have students write in their journals for five minutes about what they learned today about democracy. Journals will be turned in, and I will look at them to assess my own teaching and to help me make choices for the following day.
Lesson Two: Athenian Assembly
1. Review and Assess (5 minutes)
2. Rock Game-Get the sense of Assembly, Athenian democracy (20 minutes)
3. Analyze primary source, part I (20 minutes)
1. Review and Assess (5 minutes)
Ask students what they remember from yesterday. What is democracy? When was the first time it was used in history? Who were the people that instituted it?
2. Assembly Enactment- Rock Game (20 minutes)
“Today we are going to use Athenian democracy in our classroom to make a decision. I’ve heard that the school district is considering making the school week only four days, with Fridays off! The difference would be that instead of being here from 8:00-3:00 five days a week. We would be here from 7:15-4:00."
"In this activity, we will first discuss the idea as a group, dividing up into those who wish to change the schedule, and those who do not. Each opinion-based group will discuss and come up with the reasons to take their position. One person will represent the group, as decided by the group, and present the opinion to the entire class or assembly. Both sides will take a turn, and then we will vote. We will vote to change the system to the new times and days. I will give you two rocks, a black one, and a white one. If you want to change the schedule, you will vote favorably with a white rock. If you don’t want to pass this new law, and you want to keep things as they are you will cast a no vote with a black rock. Does anyone have any questions about how this will work?” (Assess)
“Alright, now we are going to move! Those people who think we should change to have four days of class a week with a three-day weekend, come to this side (point) of the room. Those who are against the idea, come to this side (point). Once you are in your group, come up with all the good reasons to vote for your position.” (Facilitate discussions in both groups. After 5-10 minutes, have students cast their votes in the bucket, count the votes, and announce the decision.) Explain that what they just did was how the ancient Athenians held assembly.
3. Activity - analyze primary source, part I (20 minutes)
Handout: a selection from Pericles, Funeral Oration
Transition: “Ok. We’re going to change gears now and do some reading. Yesterday I told you about Pericles. He was the one who led Athens during what was called “The Golden Age of Greece.” I’m going to pass out a sheet that has a part of a speech by Pericles. I will put you into small groups, and you should read together to understand what Pericles is saying about Athens. The sheet looks like this (hold up sheet) with the Oration on the left, and space for notes on the right. I have included questions to guide your reading, but also note anything else that helps you understand or remember what this passage is about.” Call on student to re-explain what we are about to do.
Five minutes before the period ends, have the class get back together,
collect papers, and explain that we will continue this tomorrow, sharing
what we learned from reading the oration.
Lesson Three: Complete Primary Source
and Create Timeline
1. Examine Primary Source - Part II (20 minutes)
2. Art Activity - Create Timeline (20 minutes)
3. Read aloud (5 minutes)
1. Examine Primary Source – Part II
Remind students of yesterday’s activity. Tell them we are going to have a discussion about the meaning of the text. Have them get back into the same small groups to refresh their memories of what they read so that they will be prepared to discuss. Allow students 3-5 minutes to review.
Have students set the desks up into a horseshoe. Explain guidelines for discussion. Only one person may speak at a time. Respect each other. Wait to be called on.
Ask one group to explain the answer to the first question. Get other groups input. Group two explain second answer and so on. Facilitate discussion about who should be able to participate in a democracy? Who participates in our democracy? Have all groups always been able to participate? Should people of all ages, races, and genders be allowed to participate?
2. Art Activity – Create Timeline
This activity is to encourage visual learners. Explain to students that we will be making a timeline. Ask them to review their notes and write the dates and names they have written down on the board. Tell them to use pages 5-7 in their text book to remind themselves about key ideas, people, and dates. Hand out supplies. Allow fifteen minutes to work. Clean up.
3. Read Aloud
The period might run long, if students seem to be uninterested in activity, end it early and begin this component. If they seem to be engaged and working well, adjust next day's schedule to allow for more time to finish. Try to allow atleast five minutes for this component at the end of the period.
Pass out handout and read aloud from overhead:
In The Politics, the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle said,
"There is also a doubt as to what is to be the supreme power in the state: Is it the multitude? Or the wealthy? Or the good? Or the one best man? Or a tyrant? … The principle that the multitude ought to be supreme rather than the few best is one that is maintained, and, though not free from difficulty, yet seems to contain an element of truth. For the many, of whom each individual is but an ordinary person, when they meet together may very likely be better than the few good…"
Leave students with the question (again) of:
Who should be allowed to participate in a democracy?
? Read sections titled, "Greek Philosophers Search for Truth," and "Legacy of Greece," on pages 7-8
Additional days in the unit?
1. Lecture about Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle.
2. Newspaper articles about the recent Serbian elections. Have students read individually, then get together in small groups to discuss. Relate contemporary issues in democracy to Athens.