SAMPLE DBQ ESSAY

 

Question: Describe the efforts to create more literacy in France as well as the attitudes of those for and against these changes in French  literacy during the late 17th century.

 

D = used a document.  Must use at least 6.  Only 1 point for each document used so using the same document over and over is not good unless you are putting in different groups.

 

Group = 2 or more documents in the same sentence that agree about an idea.  Must use at least 3 groups.  The common idea of the group MUST be stated as well.  The same document may be used in more than one group.

 

B = Bias or prejudice.  Explain why the writer is trustworthy as a source or why the writer has a perspective or bias that gets in the way of an accurate description of an event.

 

ESSAY:

 

The changes in literacy levels in France affected mostly the middle class and women and were heavily debated amongst the different parts of French society. The largest factor in the fight for an education amongst the poor was having the funding to receive one, where as the rich were encouraged if not expected to receive one. THESIS = 2:  Literacy spread through France quickly between 1686 and 1690 because of a determined group of clergymen and commoners who demanded educational rights. They were not stopped by their opponents in the aristocracy and the wealthy intellectual who wanted to preserve their power.

First of all, growth in literacy levels was most prevalent amongst the rural northerners as Francois Furet (Doc) and Jacques Ozouf (Doc) point out GROUP. The pastoral visits and inquires of indentants also show that there were more schools in the north; this was due in part by their extra money received from. more fertile crop harvests, which was spoken of by Arthur Young (Doc) on one of his trips to France. Other groups that showed remarkable increases were the middle class and women. Even though bigoted folks (B) like Francoise d' Aubigne (Doc) and Restif de la Bretonne (Doc) were against women's education GROUP, they could not stop it's spread amongst much of French society. For example, from 1680 to 1789, artisan women's literacy rate increased from 20% to 50% and noble women's rate increased from 60% to 85%.

Many people believed strongly in the education of the poor. The majority of these people were clergymen like the French Bishop (Doc) who wrote that one letter in 1737, the priests who in 1769 wrote to their bishops (Doc), and even some commoners like the folks who wrote the Cahier (Doc) in a village near Paris GROUP. However, their bias is obvious, because they are poor people who want to be educated to become wealthier (B); so we must take that into consideration.

Many more wealthy people wrote out against education of the poor, most of these people wrote from a very secular viewpoint. An intendant (Doc) wrote in a letter that he detested peasants learning, a government official in southern France(Doc) also wrote against it, and a French aristocrat (Doc) also wrote against it (Group), but we cannot take him very seriously seeing as he is a rich person (B), and merely wants to keep the poor man weaker than him and an education would empower them. Some people spoke out in a theistic manor too; in a government report in 1744 (Doc) they say that educating the poor is not what God intended. But none of these people could stop the writings of the satirical mastermind Francois Quesney (Doc), who used his writings to denounce French society's emphasis on producing soldiers and workers and not educated men. His opinion should be favored above all else(B  although silly), because he used humor to persuade his readers, and it is a wide known fact that funny people don't like school, so therefore he didn't enjoy school but still supported the peasants.

 

Thesis = 1 point,

ATQ = 1 point,

12 docs = 1 point,

4 groups = 1 point,

4 Bias = 1 point,

explanations of documents = 1 point

= 6 points so bonus points are available

1 Bonus point for extra group is awarded (bias not good enough for extra point)

SCORE = 7/9