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ERIC Number: EJ933488
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2745
Revisiting the Personal Essay with Ben Hamper's "Rivethead"
Kramer, Jacob
History Teacher, v44 n2 p297-301 Feb 2011
The personal essay--a paper in which a student brings in his or her own experience or concerns--is probably familiar to most historians. Teaching at the City University of New York, the author has found grading personal essays somewhat perplexing. They are sometimes written in response to an assignment that does not call for personal reflection. On the other hand, such essays tend to be well-written and often have highly engaging content. In the spring of 2009 in his writing intensive modern American history survey at Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), the author had success in assigning a personal essay as a response to Ben Hamper's "Rivethead: Tales from the Assembly Line." He not only found that this approach produced more engaging, analytic essays, but he also was surprised to learn something about labor history, which is the extent to which Fordist methods of mass production have penetrated areas of work far removed from the assembly line. A couple of guidelines when using the personal essay are provided. (Contains 10 notes.)
Society for History Education. California State University, Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90840-1601. Tel: 562-985-2573; Fax: 562-985-5431; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York