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The Rise of the Republican Party – Tasks

These tasks are based on the text The Rise of the Republican Party


  1. Which major shift occurred in American politics in the last half of the 20th century?
  2. What is meant by “liberal, almost social democratic ideals” and “conservative free market ideas”?
  3. Break down the text’s explanation of the Electoral College into a list of main points. Then explain how the system works in your own words.
  4. How did population changes affect the 2004 presidential election?
  5. The Tenth Amendment to the American Constitution states: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." Discuss what this means with another student. How does it explain Barry Goldwater’s decision not to vote for the Civil Rights Act in 1964? According to the text, what did this decision mean for the future of the Democratic Party in the South?
  6. In the 1970s, who was for continuing the Vietnam War and who was against?
  7. In which way was George McGovern like a Social Democrat?
  8. The text says that McGovern was for the busing of school children to promote integration. What is meant by this? Look up desegregation busing on Wikipedia or read Busing to Achieve Desegregation.
  9. Richard Nixon served two terms as Vice-President in the Eisenhower administration. Except for these two Republican terms (1953 – 1961), the Democrats had dominated American politics from 1933 until Nixon won the Presidency in 1969. What did he do to win the election?
  10. In which ways can environmental regulations get in the way of industry?
  11. Why do many Americans consider labor unions bad for business?
  12. What did Ronald Reagan mean when he said that “government is not the solution to our problems – government is the problem.”
  13. What is a “free market”?
  14. The Religious Right has been connected to the Republican Party ever since the 1970s. Who are the Religious Right and what do they stand for? You will find some information here.
  15. What is the Tea Party Movement? Read about it here. How would you describe the rhetoric they use on their website?
  16. Read about the Democratic and Republican parties here. Which party would you say has the most in common with social-democratic ideals? Why?

Written Production

  1. Write an essay where you discuss reasons for and effects of the rise of the Republican Party in the United States.
  2. Anti-abortion demonstrators

    Anti-abortion demonstrators

    The woman in this picture is carrying a poster reading "I am the pro-lfe generation." However the picture caption reads "Anti-abortion demonstrators." What does each of these texts convey? How do they reflect the standpoint of the individual who created the text? What may be the effect of using language in this way? Write a letter to the editor.

Sist oppdatert 09.03.2018
Tekst: Karin Dwyer Løken og Åse Elin Langeland (CC BY-SA)


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