My point of divergence was having Hitler dying from injuries he sustained in WW1 instead of losing a testicle like he actually did. The way I went about made the world change and excluded many of the really important events of the 1930-1940s. With Hitler gone, the Nazi Party never gains much power but instead the former central power countries (Germany, Bulgaria, Austria-Hungary, and Turkey) decide since they've lost so much as a result of the Treaty of Versailles, they should form a new empire with what they have. In doing this, the new empire is able to combine their remaining militaries and begin to take back the countries created from that said treaty. Eventually they conquer all of Europe and then the US. They were able to do this because the U.S. was in a state of turmoil because The Great Depression. Concerning America, any form of independence is lost once again, and America falls under another country's rule, much like the 1700's. A european influence is much more profound in present-day America.
I really did enjoy this project but at the same it was very stressful for me at certain points. Finding and creating the sources was fairly easy but putting them all together into a coherent project was really difficult. I felt like I was always leaving out a portion of history that seem vital to my project. Although on the other hand, I got to explore the causes of WW1, something I didn't really know. I learned that the catalyst for WW1 was assassination of the prince of the Austria-Hungary Empire: Archduke Franz Ferdinand by a Serbian Slavic Nationalist Gavrilo Princip. His death caused the empire of Austria-Hungary to declared was on Serbia, sparking WW1. It certainly shows that an individual's actions can effect history greatly. He didn't suspect Austria-Hungary to start an all out war, he simply doing what he felt his people needed. With the central powers combined they had no problems taking out defenseless countries.
I feel like this project could be really interesting if the scope of what 2011 would be like was a lot more global. I feel like if we didn't have to connect it back to America we can show how the entire world has been affected as well. If I were given the chance to re-do this project, I definitely would make my final product a lot more visual and interactive. I'd try to immerse the person looking at it into the history was created.
My point of divergence is about the killing of George Washington during the battle of Princeton, and the thought of us losing the revolution, and the reminiscing on how that would have conflicted with the future of us as a country.
The future that I envisioned, was that most of the land in the Midwest would most likely be all Britain’s including the thirteen colonies, and Mexico would have taken over Texas because there was no Mexican American war, and the Midwest would have been shared between England, Mexico, and Great Britain, which is located in the UK. I also said that because of Great Britain’s harsh laws on freedom of speech when it came to the civil rights movement the rulers of Britain will terminate the proceedings. I also mentioned the Native Americans and how they will just become a part of Britain’s society.
Overall, I thought this project was a very good learning experience, but overall I think the most difficult part was creating your own history and your own future of something you made up in your mind because there were so many events that occurred in history that could have been an extent to what could have happened but finding them deep within the context was very difficult.
Link to project: click here
I decided to change the second day of The Battle of Gettysburg, when General Robert E. Lee doesn't allow General James Longstreet to attack the Union Army from behind. History according to Stephen Holts says that Lee allowed Longstreet to attack the Union line from behind, while the rest of the army attacks from the front. The Confederate Army wins the day, and because the battle was so bloody, President Abraham Lincoln decides to let the Confederacy live the way they want by completely separating them from the United States. From the Battle of Gettysburg came the establishment of the Confederate States of America.
Years later, the two countries are anything but friendly neighbors. They wage war all throughout history, with the bloodiest battles being right after the Civil War over the land in the west.
Coming closer the the 21st Century, the two countries are still fighting over the same thing their ancestors did. The CSA maintains a process of immigration that the USA views as modern day slavery, while the CSA defends it saying that immigrants work for their place in the country.
The CSA and USA fight over many different things, but they also come together in certain situations.
All of this is displayed in a documentary about
The States of 2012 would change drastically. Becoming allies with the Soviet Union could cause us to see the world through the eyes of Russia and China. The country would be somewhat of a communist country. But the laws supporting freedom would just cause us to have less liberation in the country. The censorship of the internet would already be in play, the music will be less vulgar (which wouldn't be such a terrible thing), and taxes would be equal so that the Occupy movements would be unnecessary. The protests against other wars wouldn't be as drastic because of our alliance with Russia and China.
I envisioned a big change in 2012 because if we're not as worried about arguing with the Russians, we wouldn't be worried about the dangers of an atomic bomb. However, if we have a strong bond with Russia and China, the world itself would be a monopoly. Russia and China have similar views on politics. If three of the more powerful countries are all agreeing on something, then nothing could stop them from controlling the entire world.
The enjoyable thing about creating an alternative future is that everyone wishes they could change an event in their lives. But when we are to search a historical event and alter that, we learn more and more about the event in the process. Rather than reading about a certain topic in the world and writing a paper, we had to go in depth about a specific events in order to understand how we can make a change. Sometimes having the knowledge on a specific matter doesn't mean you are an expert. You're an expert when you can make a difference that is plausible to a time you weren't present. Also, creating such a bond and a change between America and Russia over a common enemy seemed intangible, but it made sense. If two strong countries worked against one country who's main motive was to conquer, they could overcome any problem.
President Harry Truman was the man of the divergence. If the president really planned out the events following Japan's atomic bombing and realized that Japan's citizens shouldn't have to suffer for their leaders' actions, then he would have waited. Sure the war would have dragged out for 10 months or more rather than 10 days, but it may make an impact. America may not be the free and liberal place is it now, but it would be more strict than it is. Our educational and economic situation may not be present in the alternative history. The changes of the government by the government would cause a more miserable America, however it'll be a more stable America.
The best way to improve my point of divergence is to create a more in-depth explanation of Truman's chat with the Soviet Union. If we created an alliance, how did it happen? What happened in the room? But like other governmental events, most are top secret. So to personally understand President Truman and to understand the Soviet Union's government better, it would've created a better project. To understand this event alone, you must understand everything. If I had a chance to change my process, I wouldn't spend so much time researching President Harry Truman's other decisions, but I would have tried to understand the Soviet's government and Truman's decisions with other issues.
Point of Divergence- THe point of divergence that was presented in my benchmark involved the kidnapping plot of President Lincoln that Booth plotted amongst others. The future that was effected by my point of divergence was the result of President Lincoln's Reconstruction plan before his assassination. With this divergence happening many events were able to take place, such as the event of the civil war ending sooner then it should of due to abraham lincoln's response. What I liked about this project was that as a student I was able to research a topic in history that I wasn't familiar with and able to change the course of time within it. Something that I found challenging about this benchmark was finding certain primary sources to fit my type of divergence. The most interesting event that I learned was about the Civil War and learning that Abraham Lincoln was involved with it. The actions of individuals impact the historical record because a specific time in history could of changed its course. If I were to produce a better project, I would take the time to look for a more specific point of divergence instead of the one I picked because I would feel more confident with other primary sources. Overall I am happy with the process of my 4th Quater benchmark.
Above is the link to the website or you can click the picture and it will take you to the site:
My point of divergence occurs in the year 1865 when William H. Seward dies because of complications of the attempted assassination. As a result of this event, William Seward never purchases Alaska, and thus the British Empire takes Alaska by force from Russia. After the British Empire discovers all of the benefits from Alaska, it aids them in future wars, and saves the United States on more then one occasion.
The process of this project was probably the most challenging. Being able to find points in history that can be changed and work was difficult and finding primary sources was even more difficult. However, even with all the difficulties involved with this project, it was rather fun being able to create your own future based on the turning of events. It also enabled me to discover some interesting things from the past. I had to look into World War 2 a lot considering the changes that were made because the British Empire controlled Alaska.
Over the course of doing this project I learned that one person really can make a big difference to the world. In the short term it may not be that big, however in the long term it can create massive changes. For instance because Seward ended up dying, the U.S. never found it in their interest to get Alaska from Russia. Now the United States is out of lots of oil and lots of money. The same thing goes for actions that are made. When certain actions are made by a group or a person, it can change the way things are short term, and massively change them in the long term. It takes a snow ball effect as time passes.
Due to the strictness of this project it is hard to say how this can be improved. It has to be very precise and accurate. Therefore, there is nothing to really improve on as a project. This did make it hard, but hard work makes good results. Unless you are in my case when you spend an entire week trying to find primary source docs and are unsuccessful. This is something that I think I can improve on. If I were to do the project again I would make sure to move on after being unsuccessful for so long.
That is a link to my website, you can also get there by clicking the primary source below
My point of divergence was a decision that Franklin Delano Roosevelt made. He knew that he was sick, so instead of focusing on ending the war as quickly as possible, he decided to work on the second bill of rights. He kept this secret so that the citizens of the united states would think he was doing the best for the nation by ending the war. As a result of this, 2012 has much less problems. Our economy is great, we are third in the world for education, and employment never dips under the rates it was at when the bill was passed. This is all because the second bill of rights helped the citizens of the united states with all of these issues.
I liked being able to choose my own topic for a project. There was a lot of freedom, and I was able to look at something I was interested in. Even though I chose my own topic, there was still a lot of challenging work. Sometimes it was hard to find resources that I could use to know what would happen in the future if this point in time would change. It was also hard to find a topic that could be altered by history, and have some impact on the United States now. It took a lot of work, but I was eventually able to settle on a topic that I found interesting, and could effect American history a lot. The most interesting thing about my topic was the fact that it might have been possible. I had not heard about a plan for the second bill of rights before, and I really liked thinking about how the world would be different if it had been made.
What if it had been made? The choice that FDR made to focus on the war, and not start creating the second bill of rights could have impacted our country greatly. It could have prolonged the war, but in the end made out country a lot better. The choice that he made effected our whole country. There are also millions of other choices that could have effected history, and we have no idea how much they would change the world had they been made differently. The choice that FDR made surely wasn't his own. It took him and some other people to decide what would be better for the country at that point, and they chose to focus un the war. There is no saying how much their decision, or any other has effected the world. Some decisions may hold no weight in the world, so that if they were changed nothing would be different, while others could look like not important decisions, but really change the world completely.
My project could have been improved if the created primary sources were more interesting or creative. There could have been a video element to them, or something more exciting than a news article, and 2 dimensional things that can easily be printed out. I would also change my website a little to make it better looking, and possibly have more creative elements. If I could do this project over again, I would like to choose another point around the same time as the one I chose. This would help me see which one was more important to society, and why. If I chose the same topic, then I would make different primary sources as I mentioned above, and change my website or have a different form of presentation, like a magazine.
My point of divergence is figuring out how technology and how much impact the world would be in if Bill Gates never had contact with his first computer? The future that I envisioned resulting from the POD is making the future more advanced. From not having Microsoft created, most of the advance technological things that we have would not exist and the big companies projects would be as updated as they would be. For example Apple with touch screen phones or XBOX 360 and other game consoles. What I liked about the project was that we were able to think and research about a topic that we always wondered about and asked questions about. What was challenging was finding out actually information that can back us up with what we decided to research. Also with trying to make what we decided to change, how will it impact the present. The most interesting fact that I investigated was that Bill Gates and another person helped create the basic coding of Microsoft. Also that big companies like Apple and Radioshack used it when it first came out for their products. The actions of individuals impact the historical record tremendously. What might be a small change in history can change the whole outlook of the future. For example what if Benjamin Franklin didn't have access to create a key or learning about the foundation of physics to launch the kite in the sky. How this project could be improved is probably putting more effort into my creativity side because I feel as though newspaper articles and a cartoon isn't as creative and showing my abilities as best as they can. If I had to do this project over what I would change about my process is how much time I spend using my resources. I know I should use all of my primary sources to my advantage but I didn't use them as effectively as I would like. Or maybe I did and I just doubt my self.