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Essay Questions

1. How did issues concerning race influence the structure and development of the U.S. Constitution? What were the main arguments and compromises involved?

2. Examine the concept of a confederation and why or how it did not work at the founding of the nation.

3. Discuss the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Nineteenth Amendments. In what ways are they similar or different? Given the broad language of the Constitution, why were they necessary?

4. Discuss three ways in which the Framers chose to structure the new institutions under the Constitution to ensure that no one official would gain too much power over the system. Be sure to explain how each of these rules aids in balancing power.

5. Describe the ways in which the founders were similar to and different from the broader American population. To what degree is it reasonable to suggest that these individuals were able to represent the ideas and interests of the majority of the population?