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Current time:0:00Total duration:10:30

Video transcript

okay this video is about the long essay section on the AP u.s. History exam now you might also have heard this called the free response question or frq I think it is officially called the long essay question so that's what we're going to go with for now now this is the last essay that you'll be writing on the AP exam and you get 35 minutes to do it which is considerably shorter than the DBQ section but the nice part about this is that you don't have to spend so much time looking at all of those primary documents the more challenging part however is that it's drawing on your own personal knowledge of the subject matter so unlike the DBQ where you're analyzing documents and looking at just what's in front of you here you're really using your own background understanding of US history and also bringing up specific details to help you make an argument so on this section of the exam you're going to have the option to choose between two different essay prompts and you can choose which of them you want to write about you only have to write about one and of course I recommend writing about the one where you feel most confident you know maybe it's about a topic that you like more or maybe it's a topic about which you feel like you can give more information but in these cases always play to your strengths so out of the two prompts that I was given there was one about whether the American Revolution was actually revolutionary and then there was this question about whether the New Deal was actually new or whether it was more conservative in nature now I love the New Deal so that is the question that I want to take on here plus I can remember a lot about the New Deal off the top of my head so that's going to give me a lot of extra information to work with so over this 35 minutes that you have on the long essay question I would recommend the East spend maybe 5 to 10 minutes of that and I think 10 minutes would really be max to plan your essay to write a little outline for yourself decide what your thesis is going to be and come up with a game plan that is going to direct the rest of your writing time which should be the rest of the time that you spend 25 to 30 minutes in this exam period now again your mileage may vary on this you know you might be the sort of person who can plan really fast and take a lot of time writing or you might be this sort of person who knows that they can write pretty fast so they can spend some more time planning but I think this is just kind of a good overall guideline for how you want to be spending your time okay so once you've taken a look at each of the topics for the essay prompts and decided which one you want the next step is to read the prompt itself really carefully you want to make sure that there aren't any sort of hidden strictures in there that might direct what you are allowed to write about in the prompt and what you aren't allowed to write about in the prompt okay so let's take a look at this question some historians have argued that the New Deal was ultimately conservative in nature support modify or refute this interpretation providing specific evidence to justify your answer okay so it seems like the heart of this is about whether the New Deal was conservative or radical and I think in this context the word conservative doesn't mean politically conservative or right leaning but rather conservative as in the sense of keeping something that existed before so were the ways of a society conserved over time or did they change over time one thing I notice about this question is that it really doesn't give us much in the way of a specific time frame to talk about so it doesn't say talk about whether the New Deal was conservative or radical in the period between 1920 and 1940 it just asks us to say in the grand scheme of things do you see the New Deal was ultimately a conservative or radical movement so that means if we want to we could actually talk about a lot of different things really up to the present and it doesn't even say that we only have to talk about the United States I mean this is AP US history so the basis of everything you're writing has to be about American society but there's nothing saying you can't compare American society to other nations in this time period okay so our time scope is broad and even our geography is relatively broad alright so how do we decide what we're going to write about well I think it's given us three main options here can support this idea so we could argue that yes the New Deal was conservative we can refute and say no the New Deal was radical was not conservative at all or we can modify which might take the form of saying oh maybe it was both conservative and radical or maybe you even want to say this is not the right question to ask so the modify option is kind of like a both or neither kind of way of looking at things now how do we decide which of these three arguments we want to make I think one of the most useful things you can do at this stage is just make a list of things you might want to talk about in this essay so if we're thinking about the conservativeness or the radicalness of the New Deal what sorts of things might we bring up so first let's just refresh ourselves on what the New Deal was about and the New Deal was this package of programs which were passed during the Great Depression by Franklin Delano Roosevelt as a means to try to restart the American economy and people often talk about the New Deal kind of taking the three forms of relief for people who are suffering for people who need immediate aid recovery to try to get the economy back on track and reform just ways to try to change laws change the way the economy worked so that something like the Great Depression didn't happen again and with the New Deal we often think about this kind of alphabet soup of agencies you know there's the CCC the Civilian Conservation Corps there's the TVA the Tennessee Valley Authority there's the NRA the National Recovery administration and the WPA the Works Progress Administration and these were all programs that were intended to get people back to work to try to modernize the country and to try to moderate relationships between workers and corporations so what are some of the other things we know about the New Deal well the New Deal was a reaction to the Great Depression which was brought on by some irresponsible banking in the 1920s a time of what was known as lazy Fair economics which kind of said the government was to keep its hands out of the economy laissez-faire is French for let them do what they will so let the economy do whatever it wants well this all right came crashing down somewhat literally in 1929 with the stock market crash and then for another three years the depression continued to get worse and worse Hoover had a largely hands-off approach to the Great Depression and so he's creamed in the election of 1932 by Franklin Delano Roosevelt who promises that he's going to get things back on track and so Roosevelt had a really experimental response to the Great depression was kind of a try something and see if it works approach so he and his administration just kind of through a lot of different experimental solutions at the problem to see what they could do about the Great Depression but the other thing we know about the New Deal is that in the end it didn't really work now this was partly because the Supreme Court rolled back a lot of the New Deal program saying that they weren't constitutional which led FDR into his famous court packing scheme where he tried to add new justices to the Supreme Court basically tilting it in his favor and he failed that and the depression continued to get worse throughout the end of the 1930s it really wasn't until World War two that the mobilization for war the American manufacturing for the war got the United States out of the Great Depression so I think it's clear that the New Deal was this really unique period in the United States when the government just tried whatever they could think of in order to try to improve the economy but I think the question is if we think about the basic assumptions of the New Deal itself were those radical or were they conservative okay let's pause here to think about that a little bit more and in the next video we'll decide which way we want to lean and think about how to write that essay
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