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Humanities

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Cry, the Beloved Country

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The Hobbit

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Siddhartha

Nonprofit Organizations

After reading his son's essays, James Jarvis changes profoundly. His son's death shocks him out of his complacency; he soon sees that Arthur made a difference in the world through his charitable works and political activism, and shortly thereafter he begins to make a difference in the world by contributing to Kumalo's church in Ixopo.

By the end of the novel, the protagonists are focused not on themselves but rather on the community: they seek ways in which to improve life for everyone. (Contrast this with John Kumalo, who is only interested in himself.) They did what they did because they felt it was right.

Of course, I'm wondering now what you would do--what cause would you champion simply because it was the right thing to do? (If you wouldn't champion anything, why not? Is nothing worth the effort? Do you expect "someone else" to solve the world's problems? Why not you?)

The world certainly has room for improvement. There are many causes that need champions. Find one, Gentle Student, because it is right.

This is the culminating assignment for the unit. Using the internet, search for nonprofit organizations that do their best to fight for a cause that you feel is right. Explore their web sites and note their facts and rationale for doing what they do. Then write a 3-4 page expository essay defending their position (with which you agree) using corroborating evidence that you find from OTHER sources in print or electronic media. You must have a Works Cited page and use the correct format for citing electronic sources.

I, for example, am something of a "crunchy granola" type. I think our environment is worth fighting for, and so I might support a nonprofit organization such as Greenpeace, or another environmental group with a slightly different emphasis to its efforts. To write this paper, I'd examine Greenpeace's web site and find an issue to research. Perhaps I'd focus on whaling, or the lumber industry, or toxic waste. I'd find out all there is to know about that issue and write an argumentative paper in support of Greenpeace's position.

Suggestions: Use Alta Vista or other advanced search engines (HotBot) to find lists of nonprofit organizations and/or causes worth fighting for. Once you have a cause, research it and defend it!

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