Week 36 Writing Assignment

  1. What do you think is the central point of the essay you read by Mario Vargas Llosa?

The central point of this essay is individual freedom and the responsibility we have to keep it.

2. What is the truth of the matter regarding the claim that people in the Middle Ages thought the earth was flat?

The truth was that nobody in the Middle Ages though the Earth was flat. This was a myth meant to hurt Christianity and the Catholic Church. Long before the Middle Ages, people had figured out that the Earth was not flat because the were able to get a circumference from the Earth.


Week 35 Writing Assignment

  1.  How were the ideas of Marsilius of Padua evident in Louis of Bavaria’s conflict with Pope John XXII?

In 1314, two groups of electors chose Louis of Bavaria and Fredrick of Austria. Louis and Fredrick end up going to war on each other. Pope John gets word of this and orders Fredrick to surrender all titles and report to the papal court. Unfortunately, the Pope’s orders were disobeyed by most of the German territories. Eventually, a group called the Spiritual Franciscans come out against Pope John XXII. More support came for Louis from Marsilius of Padua and John of Jandun, both from the University of Paris. The ideas of Marsilius and Padua were evident in Louis of Bavaria’s conflict in the rebellion against Pope John XXII.

2. What can we say about the condition of the Catholic Church on the eve of the Protestant Reformation?

The condition of the Catholic Church on the eve of the Protestant Reformation was in a state of degradation. Absenteeism, superstition, astrology, gambling, the desire for money, ignorance overall destroyed the Church. The amount of people who were attending the Church was declining rapidly but popular piety was increasing significantly among the people.  The eremitic way of life was saved, the idea that one must come away from the world and all physical things and only live on spiritual things.

3. Discuss the three key developments in the process of political centralization in Spain.

One of the key developments in the process of political centralization in Spain was that Aragon and Castile were brought together. In 1469, Isabella, heiress of Castile married Ferdinand, heir to the throne of Aragon. In 1479, the two crowns were united. The second key development was the conquest of Granada bringing Reconquista to an end. Ferdinand and Isabella were determined to revive the Reconquista. Granada was the last Moorish outpost in Spain. The siege of Granada began in 1491. A fire ends up destroying the crusaders’ tents and Isabella orders that a full – fledged city be built on the spot. This town would be called Santa Fe. The last key development was the Spanish Inquisition. There was a concern about Jews and Muslims whose conversions to Catholicism did not appear sincere (mainly the Marranos and Moriscos). Rulers did not believe religious uniformity would make Spain easier to rule and a greater power.

Lesson 170 Writing Assignment On The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano

  1. What was Equiano’s attitude regarding his life in the British Navy?

When regarding his life in the British Navy, Equiano’s attitude was positive. He loved being a sailor and living the sailors’ life. He felt free and enjoyed his social life onboard as well. He also made sure to let the reader know that it was a challenge to go from an always frightened slave to a strong and courageous sailor. It took time to trust people the way he needed to because of his past. His past was rough so he only trusted himself but when he became a sailor, he had to learn that the other sailors were people that he could trust. He also loved learning and working with other sailors his age. He tried to learn as much as possible from the admirals and generals whom he looked up to. Equiano had never experienced freedom before he became a sailor and he loved it. He had to adjust but he liked working on the ship he worked on because the other sailors respected him and he was able to be free.

Week 34 Writing Assignment

  1. Discuss the rise and fall of Girolamo Savonarola.

Girolamo Savonarola lived from 1452 to 1498. He liked to preach against corruption, lax morals in the clergy, and the Church. He also preached against the spirit of the Renaissance. Savonarola criticized the Medici family for their luxurious lives. He did not believe that one family could have more money than they knew what to do with while there were other families that could barely make enough to feed their families. He even held sophisticated listeners like Pica della Mirandola, Michelangelo, and Botticelli spellbound. Savonarola fell because the Church eventually had had enough of his behavior. Savonarola was constantly burning every book he saw and was destroying what he considered to be immoral art. Pope Alexander had had enough of this behavior and excommunicated him in May of 1458.

2. Discuss the Italian War of 1494-1498.

The Italian War happened under the reign of King Charles VIII who ruled from 1483 to 1498. When his father died, he was too young to run a kingdom by himself so his 23 year old sister ruled as his regent for 8 years. His sister was better at ruling the kingdom than everyone expected her to be. When Charles came of age, his focus was on taking over Naples. This would then force the French to trade in the Mediterranean Sea which would benefit King Charles’ kingdom. He was cheered on by Milan, Naples’ rival. On his way through Milan, he was able to capture Florence and Pisa really easily. Milan did not like this and eventually joined the resistance group to help kick King Charles out of Italy before he took them over too. The French made multiple attempts to invade King Charles’ kingdom but they were unsuccessful, only succeeding in causing a lot of greifing for the Italians.

Lesson 165 Writing Assignment for the Autobiography of Fredrick Douglass

  1. What I must do in my note-taking to describe what is going on around me.

When I take notes, it is very important that I am observant of my surroundings. When I write my autobiography, I need to be able to look back at my notes and see that I was observant with my surroundings. I want to be able to write my autobiography without having to worry about and missed details about what was going on around me. To be a good observer, you have to be able to make a good educated guess about what the people around you are thinking and observe their behavior. This will hopefully help the reader to understand your world better and the people around you.

Week 33 Writing Assignment

  1.  What points is Erasmus making in the excerpt you read from The Praise of Folly?

One of the points Erasmus makes in this except is that he was concerned that Christianity was being transformed into a mere superstition. He thought that if Christianity was a superstition, a lot of people would not only miss the opportunity to know Christ, but the people who already knew him would stray if they heard that Christianity was not real but a superstition. Another point is that he argued that fools were always victorious in all areas of life. He did not think it was right that fools were the ones who were succeeding in life. He thought it was backwards and that smart, rational people should be successful in life and not fools. The last point is that he is famous for asking this question: “If people were ruled by reason, would we have bravery?” Sometimes, people are brave because they want to or because they would to prove a point. If humans were ruled by reason, I don’t think there would be nearly as much bravery as there is now because reason keep a lot of people from doing stupid things but it also forces them to be rational.

2. We normally think of three people in particular as having been the key artists of the High Renaissance. Who were they? Discuss one major work from each.

One of the key artists of the High Renaissance is a man named Michelangelo who lived from 1475 to 1564. At heart, he was a marble carver but his skills far surpassed this. At age 17, he completed his first masterpiece called the Battle of the Centaurs. One of his major works is called Pieta which he did in 1498 and 1499. Another key artist is Raphael who lived from 1483 to 1520. He did lots of self – portraits but he also did portrait paintings too. During his lifetime, Raphael did about 50 portraits and paintings. One of his major works is called the Sistine Madonna. The last key artist in the High Renaissance is a man named Leonardo da Vinci who lived from 1452 to 1519. Leonardo was an inventor, architect, scientist, engineer, and painter. He was interested in nature and made anatomical and botanical drawings. Leonardo believed that a painter should know such things for his paintings to be realistic. One of his major works is called Virgin of the Rocks which he did in 1483.

Lesson 160 Writing Assignment

  1. Has any event in your life had the same impact that learning how to read had on Douglass’s life? If not, why not?

When Fredrick Douglass learned to read, it changed everything for him. He said, “The reading of these documents enabled me to utter my thoughts, and to meet the arguments brought forward to sustain slavery…” An important event in my life was when I started homeschooling. This completely changed the way I did things. First of all, it changed the fact that I did not have to get up at 5:30 every morning and I also get done with school earlier. I was going to a public school from pre – k to 8th grade. When I started 9th grade, it was at home. I love homeschooling because there is no homework and I get to start after the public schools do and I get done way before them. I do miss seeing my friends everyday but now that I have a phone, I can keep in touch with them everyday. I was so convinced at the beginning that I would not like homeschooling at all but after a month or so, I realized that it was not all that bad. I love how flexible my schedule is and that I don’t have homework to do but there are also distractions like my animals. If I don’t keep track of the time, I could be on a 5 minute break but that 5 minutes turns into 10 or 15 minutes so I have to really try to not do that. It can also get really lonely at times. If nobody is home, it gets too quiet so I have to play music just so I can keep my focus. Other than the distractions and loneliness, homeschooling is amazing and probably the best thing that ever happened to me education wise.