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AP US History multiple choice example 2

KA's US history fellow Kim Kutz does another example multiple choice question from the AP US History exam.

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  • duskpin ultimate style avatar for user Pip
    In the video, answer (a) was, "The Second Great Awakening".
    Kim says that it was a religious movement, but what was it exactly?
    (18 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
    • piceratops ultimate style avatar for user Kim Kutz Elliott
      Great question! The Second Great Awakening was a flourishing of religious zeal in the United States in the 1830s-1840s. It was partly a backlash against the Enlightenment (an intellectual movement toward rationalism and science that inspired the American Revolution) and it emphasized a more forgiving, emotional version of Protestant Christianity than the strict religion of Puritans. In this period people would go to camp meetings (similar to tent revivals) and they would often have very emotional experiences of religious conversion.

      The Great Awakening involved not only a lot more membership in evangelical Christian religions (Baptists, Methodists) but also the creation of lots of new religions, some of which survive today (Mormons, Seventh Day Adventists) and some of which do not (Shakers, for example).

      I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions.
      (28 votes)
  • hopper jumping style avatar for user Rebekka Johansson (inactive)
    So, who was James Henry Hammond exactly?
    (4 votes)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user

Video transcript

- [Voiceover] Alright so in the last video, we were taking a look at this multiple choice question from the AP US History exam practice booklet and trying out some strategies for making good choices as you go through these questions. Now the first thing we did was really dive into the specifics of what was happening in both of these quotes. Who James Henry Hammond is, he's a governor of South Carolina who was in favor of slavery in the mid-19th century who was giving some religious reasons and reasons of kindness for why slavery was a institution sanctioned by God and society, and Frederick Douglass, famous abolitionist, who's saying that slavery is the great sin and shame of America. So our first step was analyzing the documents. And then our second step was to read each of our questions really carefully. And both the questions and the possible answer choices, you need to give them your full attention because you might skip over an important word that makes the meaning different than what you thought it was at first glance. The third thing we're doing is going through each of the options and deciding whether or not it's a possible before eliminating it. So let's try an example of a multiple choice question related to these documents. The language used in both excerpts most directly reflects the influence of which of the following? So they're specifically asking us about the language. That means, the words that they're using, their phrases. Not maybe their political positions or the ideas that they're trying to get across, but specifically the words. And we're looking for the influence of one of these four ideologies. OK, option A, The Second Great Awakening. Hmm, alright, well, I'm gonna say that's a religious movement of some kind. And they both talk about God and the relationship between slavery and Christianity so I'm gonna leave that as a possible. Alright, what about States' rights? Well, I imagine that both these people would've had very different ideas about states' rights, but I'm not sure that's what they're talking about in these examples cuz Hammond is talking about the duty of slave owners to be kind, and maybe the religious reasons why God has made the institution of slavery, in his opinion. And Douglass is talking about how slavery is against the Bible and against the idea of liberty, so neither of them is particularly concerned with the political issue of states' rights here. So I think we can cross that one out. Alright, Manifest Destiny. Manifest Destiny was this idea that the United States had a divine mission to occupy the North American continent from Atlantic to Pacific. While they both kind of talk about ideas of divinity, I don't think they're interested in any kind of pioneering. This is more connected to the American West than it is to any idea about slavery. So I think we can get rid of that. Alright, option D, American nationalism. Well, I think Douglass is, if anything, he's kind of saying that slavery challenges American nationalism. Well I guess he talks about it then, maybe a nationalist view of the idea of liberty would say that slavery is a sin and a shame. So that's possible for Douglass. But what about for Hammond? He's really making cultural and religious arguments for slavery, not any argument about how slavery enhances the American nation. So I'm gonna cross that one out too. So that leaves us with The Second Great Awakening. And I think that is a good answer because both of them are making religious arguments. They're saying that God would have liked, or would not have liked, slavery. So their language does reflect an interest in religion. We'll do some other examples in other videos, but I think the big takeaway from this is, don't worry about having every idea and every fact about American history stored away in your brain somewhere. Instead, understand that what this exam is really going for is finding out whether you have a good overall idea of what happened in American history, and who might have supported which idea. And trust your instincts. They're usually right. The point is not to test you on some obscure outlier, but rather to get a sense that you know what you're talking about in each era of history, and the general idea of what was going on. So use that to your advantage. Understand the big, underlying themes. And don't worry about the little ticky-tack details. You know what you're doing.