In Afrique Je te Plumerai, the Cameroonian filmmaker, Jean Marie Teno, asked the question: “How can a country composed of well-structured traditional societies fail to succeed as a state?” Thinking about specific African countries that we have studied, an

This a Final Exam Essay for an African studies class based off a film(link will be provided) and previous documents(login to access materials will also be provided) that have been presented throughout the 5-week summer course. It is due Saturday June 23rd at 11:59 pm though I would prefer it at 10:30. The following are guidelines emailed by the instructor:

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In Afrique Je te Plumerai, the Cameroonian filmmaker, Jean Marie Teno, asked the question: “How can a country composed of well-structured traditional societies fail to succeed as a state?” Thinking about specific African countries that we have studied, an
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 This is a take-home exam. This means that you cannot simply rely on a broad knowledge of your notes and readings as if you were taking an in-class exam. You do not have to memorize your notes, readings, primary documents, and films. You will have the materials ON Blackboard and I expect you to use all that are relevant. There is no need for you to seek out other information on-line; this information may ultimately be extraneous. You cannot simply repeat what we have said in class or what you have read. Through analytical reasoning, you must find a way to synthesize all relevant sources, integrate them into your argument, and use them to support a well developed THESIS. This is the basis of historical writing. For more information, see Writing Historical Essays on Blackboard. 


• The essay should be 4-6 pages (I will not read any pages beyond six). Although some of you may want to write far more than this, presenting a clear and concise argument is a skill.

 • Citations – you do not need to cite general knowledge but you should provide citations for direct quotes. I would advise you to avoid using long quotes because they will diminish space for your own thoughts. 

• Don’t forget a Title 

• There is no need to repeat the question. This only takes away from your own writing space. 

• It should be double-spaced, Times, 12pt, 1.25” margins

 Recommended Procedure: 

1. Read the question closely, paying particular attention to the various components of it

 2. Come up with a tentative thesis for the essay (you will adjust this as you go along) 3. Think about how to organize your paragraphs (themes, eras, etc.) and identify significant dates, etc. that mark moments of transition 

4. Identify voices and data to provide evidence and support your arguments (Which primary documents are relevant?) 

5. Think about how you will develop your analysis (i.e., what does your evidence support?) 

6. Prepare an outline and STRONG topic sentences for each paragraph.

 7. Revise and strengthen your introduction, thesis, and conclusion 

8. Write the essay and walk away from it for a day 

9. Revise and proofread the essay, checking the intro. and conclusion, and all topic sentences.

In Afrique Je te Plumerai, the Cameroonian filmmaker, Jean Marie Teno, asked the question: “How can a country composed of well-structured traditional societies fail to succeed as a state?” Thinking about specific African countries that we have studied, and incorporating all relevant videos, readings, and primary documents – especially from Mods 4, 5, and 6,how would you respond to Teno’s question? Think about your response in political, economic, and socio-cultural terms and bring in specific examples. What historical circumstances have fostered failure and hindered success in the colonial and postcolonial periods? Don’t forget that there are a number of primary documents mentioned within the books you read. Also, remember, Africa is NOT a country and you should be wary of talking about “Africans” in the general sense too often. Different things happened in different places at different times. Be sure to analyze and discuss these differences.

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