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Civil Disobedience Essay
Due Date: 4/19/2017
Subject: AP Language & Composition

Civil Disobedience Literary Analysis Essay


After reading the perspectives of Frederick Douglass from My Bondage My Freedom (p.521- 527) and Henry David Thoreau from Civil Disobedience, choose one of the readings below to compare/contrast with the guidance of analysis questions below.


Thesis: Must be a statement of opinion that makes a connection between the three works (Douglass, Thoreau and one other) concerning the theme of civil disobedience. 


  • Civil Rights Movement— “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” by M.L. King, Jr.
  • Indian Resistance Movement— from “Non-violent Resistance” by Gandhi
  • Jewish Holocaust— “April in Germany” by Bourke-White


5 questions to address/consider in your essay:


1.      According to the authors, what is the ultimate source of any government’s power?

2.      According to the authors, what makes a practice or a law just or unjust?

3.      According to the authors, what ways of resisting injustice are appropriate?

4.      Do the authors feel that someone must be willing to accept the consequences for acts of civil disobedience? Why or why not?

5.      How can civil disobedience be used to resolve issues involving massive repression?

6.      What do you think are the long-term effects of civil disobedience on a society?



  • Minimum of 3 full pages; paragraphs are at least 8 sentences
  • Minimum of 6 parenthetical citations.   All direct quotes MUST be correctly integrated with your own words.
  • Introduce all three texts in your introduction.
  • Follow the APA guidelines for writing literary analysis (present tense, third person, parenthetical citations, etc.)
  • Follow APA guidelines for writing essays (double space, 12-point font, page numbers, APA heading, etc.)
  • Works Cited


Douglass, F. (1855). My Bondage and My Freedom.London, England: Partridge and Oakey.


Gandhi, and Bharatan Kumarappa. (1961). Non-violent Resistance (Satyagraha). New York: Schocken, Print.


King, M. L. (1963). Letter from the Birmingham Jail. San Francisco: Harper San Francisco.


Thoreau, H. D., Miller, P., & Thoreau, H. D. (1980). Walden: Or, Life in the woods; and On the duty of civil disobedience. New York: Signet Classic


FINAL ESSAY Due Date:   April 19, 2017

Prewrite due 4/12 (class work grade)      Rough Draft due 4/13 (quiz grade)          Final Draft due 4/19 (essay grade)

Civil Disobedience Prewriting Notes Due
Due Date: 4/12/2017
Subject: AP Language & Composition

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