The Declaration of Independence: Assignment

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Lesson 8, Handout 8 The Declaration of Independence From AP U.S. HISTORY 1: The Evolving American Nation-State, 1607-1914. © Center for Learning, Publisher. For homework, read the Declaration of Independence and write answers to the following questions on your own paper. 1. What is the purpose of the Declaration of Independence as stated in the introductory paragraph? 2. What groups did the Continental Congress hope to sway by this document? 3. According to Jefferson, who has the right to create a government? According to Jefferson, what is the purpose of a government? According to Jefferson, what should be done if a government fails to fulfill its purpose? 4. Using your answers in item 3, summarize in your own…show more content…
(The logical structure and sophisticated vocabulary both suggest that it was intended for the elite.) What other people had created a climate for revolution among the masses before 1776? (One might mention Patrick Henry. Samuel Adams, and Thomas Paine, author of "Common Sense.") Roots What was the cause for Issuing the Declaration of Independence? (The Continental Congress had become frustrated over Britain's "long train of abuses and usurpations" and lack of progress toward resolving differences between the colonies and mother country.) Merely declaring independence did not gain British recognition of colonial independence. What advantages could the colonies gain, then, by announcing their independence from England? (It gave colonists a "cause" for fighting; it raised the possibility of foreign aid since other countries would no longer view assistance as meddling in another country's internal affairs; and it raised hopes that colonists captured by the mother country would be treated as prisoners of war rather than traitors.) In view of the possible advantages of a declaration of independence from England, what factors caused the colonies to proceed with great caution? (They were giving up the
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