Final Exam Essay Questions and Instructions Below are two questions. Respond to ONE question in an essay of three to five pages. The essay is worth 50 points. Your essay should be typed, 3-5 pages, with 1 inch margins, double-spaced, with a font no larger than 12 pt. You may use any format that is supported by TurnItIn.com (see that website for list of supported formats). It is not necessary to consult any sources other than your text books or lecture notes to compose a good (or even great) essay. If you do use outside sources, however, you must cite them. Sources other than the assigned materials may be used to supplement the assigned readings, but not as a replacement. You may consult with other students in preparing your answers, but the work you submit must be your own. Copying, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty will result in punishment, which includes (but is not limited to) receiving a failing grade in the course. In particular, anyone who cuts and pastes material from any internet source will receive an F in the course. I mention that latter point because someone does it every year. I do not enjoy failing students for plagiarism, but I will do so if it is necessary. As with previous exams, you should upload your essays to TurnItIn.com, using the link available on the Canvas page for the site. Answers to essay questions do not need to be extremely long. The essay is not a research paper, but a reflection on the course readings. Your answers should, however, minimally do the following 1) Demonstrate that you understand the concepts to which the question refers by defining as necessary the key terms. 2) Illustrate key points with examples taken from lectures, readings, or other source. 3) Answer all parts of the question If you are repeating the course, you may not write on the question that you answered previously. You essay must be a new and original work. Submitting an essay that you wrote previously is defined as “self-plagiarism” and is subject to the same prohibition against plagiarism as other forms of submitting non-original work. The Questions 1. One critic of Jared Diamond’s work wrote: “Like a Victorian moralist, Diamond lauds what he considers advances and warns of decline. His notions of virtuous leaders and societal courage are reminiscent of those of Gibbon and Toynbee, two historians who bracketed the Victorian era” (Joseph Tainter 2005). Diamond often refers to history as a race that has been won by Europe. For example, the first chapter is called “To the starting line.” Is Diamond just another unilineal evolutionist, like Augustine of Hippo, E.B. Tylor and L.H. Morgan, or does he avoid their mistakes? Does Diamond make a contribution with Guns, Germs, and Steel or is it an over-generalized just-so story? Justify your answer by discussing culture change and theories of unilineal evolution.
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