Cold war essay | World history homework help


Our final exam will consist of 1 essay with a minimum word count of 750.. You may choose your essay topic from the following questions.

Note:  This is not a research paper.  The bulk of your paper should be based on material from the textbook, module introductions, course documents, and course videos.  However, you may use up to two academic sources to augment your essay.  

Essay question: Historians, always eager to analyze the causes of events, have suggested a variety of reasons/causes of the Cold War.  Which of these three most prevalent theories do you see as being more valid, and why?  Use course material to support your position. 

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Here are the three prevalent theories.  Base your essay on these theories, but don’t include them in your essay question.

  1. Traditional Theory states that the Cold War was started by the Soviets and their zeal for territorial and ideological expansion. The U. S. was simply taking effective measures against aggressive Soviet advancements.
  2. Revisionists’ Theory states that the Soviets’ need to secure their borders was a logical response to invasions of their territory during both WWI and WWII. The U. S. should have been more understanding and accommodating instead of pursuing policies that intensified Soviet fears.
  3. The “Other” Theory states that the U. S. and the U. S. S. R. had such diametrically opposed political, social, and economic systems that post-war tensions were inevitable.

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You will be graded on:

  • Format
    • Did you follow the course guidelines for formatting your paper?  
    • Did you follow the 5-paragraph essay guidelines shown below?
  • Argument
    • Do you have a thesis statement?  Is it clearly worded, and concise?  Does it include your argument’s key points?
    • Have you included course material/specifics to support your argument/position/answer?
    • Does your argument have depth?  Or is your argument shallow and elementary?
  • Collegiate-level Writing
    • Have you checked your essays for grammar errors?  
    • Have you proof-read your paper?
  • Accuracy
    • Is the material you have included in your essays accurate?
    • Have you used material from the appropriate time-period?
  • Footnotes
    • Have you used Chicago style footnotes to document your sources?
    • Have you included a sufficient number of footnotes?
      • There should be a minimum of 1 footnote for every paragraph (with the exception of the conclusion.)


  • Follow the course guidelines for format, footnotes, and thesis statements,
  • This is NOT a research paper.  The bulk of your evidence should come from the textbook, the module introductions, and the course videos.  
  • Minimum word count is 750 words.  Remember, the word count should not including the heading, question, or footnotes.  

Format for a Well-Written, 5-Paragraph Essay

  • Be sure to include evidence from the Introductions, textbook, and course videos to reinforce your argument/thesis.
  • Organize your essay into at least 5 paragraphs. Here is a simple formula for a 5-paragraph essay:
    • 1st paragraph introduces the topic and/or answers the question, includes your thesis statement, and your key points.
    • 2nd paragraph addresses/expands your first key point using course specifics.
    • 3rd paragraph addresses/expands your second key point using course specifics.
    • 4th paragraph addresses/expands your third key point using course specifics.
    • 5th paragraph summarizes your argument, but does not include any “new” material.

Textbook used: Western Civilizations Volume 2 ISBN:978-0-393-41900-9

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