- Explain the movement toward expansion
in relation to the theories of American Manifest Destiny and
mission. The focus might be on how the drives to acquire Oregon,
Texas, and California arose from the general belief that America should expand
across the continent.
REFERENCE: Ray Billington, Westward
- Examine the role of women in the westward
expansion of the 1840s to Oregon and elsewhere. Compare their outlooks and
concerns to those that dominated the manifest destiny ideology.
REFERENCE: Susan Butuille, ed., Womens
Voices from the Oregon Trail (1994).
- Consider the origins of the Mexican War
in relation to Polks desire for California and the narrow issue of
the Texas boundary. Analyze the charges by the wars opponents that
Polks essential aim was to add new slave territory to the United States.
Consider the long-term results of the Mexican War.
REFERENCE: Patricia Nelson Limerick, The
Legacy of Conquest (1987).
- Examine the Mexican War in relation to
broader patterns of ethnic and racial conflict in the Southwest.
REFERENCE: Reginald Horsman, Race
and Manifest Destiny (1981).