Debating War and Peace in Washington Square Park

Lesson Duration

By Robert Cohen, Diana Turk, and Emily Klein,
with the assistance of New York University Social Studies
Class E23.2047 for Social Education, NCSS

“Here is a sampling of the comments written and posted around the arch at Washington Square Park in the days immediately following the destruction of the World Trade Center [9/11/2001]. Following the comments are suggestions about ways to use this primary source in social studies classes. Although the immediate sense of urgency to discuss the World Trade Center tragedy in classrooms may diminish in time, the Washington Square writings will long be relevant to social studies classes as they explore such topics as citizenship, civil liberty, prejudice, nationalism, immigration, terrorism, violence, and war.”

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Social Education, the journal of the National Council for the Social Studies, contains theoretical content and practical teaching ideas.