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Vietnam War Essay Questions

The Student Movement and the Vietnam War

Essay Question:

When your family thinks about people in the 1960s or early 1970s who were your age (18 to 26, say), what seems most significant about those people?

To support your argument, get some family stories about young people in this era. The following questions should elicit family stories that will be useful to you. Composing your own questions might be even more successful, especially if you base those questions on your knowledge of your family chronology and history.

  • What did your family think of the war in Vietnam?
  • Did you watch news of the war on television? Did children watch war footage?
  • Did your family hear about American soldiers doing heroic things or doing terrible things? Was news on television different from what they heard from soldiers or their families? Did they hear about the My Lai massacre on the news?

  • What did you think when you heard about the Kent State shootings?

  • In your family's community, in the 1960s or early 1970s, did people see college students? Were there any "town and gown" problems? Were the college students different from the people in your family of the same age?
  • Did different generations respond differently to the Kent State shootings or news of the war in Vietnam? Did anyone in your family worry that the government had too much power, or that it was sending soldiers to kill and die for the wrong reasons? Do family members who remember that time feel differently about the government now?

For those who had family members in college:

  • Who in your family was in college in the 1960s or early 1970s? Why did they decide to go to college? why to the college(s) they chose?
  • What did people get out of college in the 1960s or early 1970s?
  • What is most memorable about college in the 1960s or early 1970s -- classes? fellow students? professors? parties? sports? politics?
  • How was campus life different then than now?

For those who served in Vietnam or who knew people who did:

  • How are Vietnam veterans different from veterans of other wars?
  • Did military service change your life in important ways? How?
  • What was the first thing you noticed about Vietnam?
  • What duties did you have?
  • What was the scariest thing that happened to you?
  • What made you and your buddies laugh?
  • What was it like to come home?

  • Do you like any of the movies made about the Vietnam war?


More general questions for further conversation:

  • When you look back on your life, how much do you think the American government has affected it -- the draft? veterans' benefits? social security? taxes? public schools? the defense industry?

  • How did you like school? What were your favorite subjects? Least favorite? Why?
  • How did students behave at school when you were young?
  • Think about your favorite teacher. What do you see him/her doing? wearing? What did his/her classroom look like?
  • Did your school have any special celebrations (pep rallies, campus-wide "snow days," special occasions at holidays, etc.)?
  • Were you ever part of the PTA (or a similar organization), or did you ever volunteer in your children's school? Did a teacher ever call your house to discuss a problem or to report on a child's achievement?

  • If your informant was in college some time other than the 1960s and early 1970s, this might be a good time to ask them about their college years (see questions above).
  • What topic do you wish you had studied more? why?
  • If you could go to college now (or go back to college), what would you like to study? why?

Effects and Causes of the Cold War Essay: Topic Ideas and Summary

World War II ended in the mid nineteen forties. While it was wonderful that a violent, global conflict had come to an end, the world would be entering a new set of tensions. The cold was began just after the end of the ward, and involved non violent conflict between the Soviet Union (Warsaw Pact) and the United States and their Allies (Nato). A cold war is defined as conflict that does not include any battles or military actions between the feuding nations. While the Soviet Union and the United States never used military force against one another, multiple wars during the time of the cold war happened as a direct result of the cold war conflict. These include both the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Other actions taken during this period that had far reaching effects included trading arms for hostages and the sale of arms to Middle Eastern Forces. Most historians agree that the cold war officially ended in the early nineties. Due to the fact that the cold war lasted so long and had economic, political, social, and cultural impacts world wide, there are many topics on which you can base a cold war essay. It is precisely that large selection that could trip you up. This is why we have come up with a list of essay topic ideas that we are confident are sure winners. Feel free to take any of the suggestions to use as is, or modify any of these in order to come up with a custom topic idea.

Cold War Essay Questions, Prompts, and Topic Ideas

  • Write an essay describing the influence of the Cold War on the Vietnam War
  • What actions did the United States take that caused the Soviet Union to feel as if their interests were being threatened?
  • How are the citizens of North Korea still impacted by the events of the Cold War?
  • How did the actions of Russian policy makers cause United States Officials to feel threatened or concerned?
  • Write an essay that explains the Domino Theory
  • Write an argumentative essay about who started the cold war. Defend your position with solid evidence.
  • The reunification of Germany was a major indicator that the cold war was over. Write an essay describing the events around the destruction of the Berlin Wall.
  • How did the Cold War play a role in the Korean War?
  • Explain what happened during the Cuban Revolution and how it was related to the Cold War
  • What was the impact of the cold war on pop culture throughout the decades?
  • Does Ronald Reagan deserve the credit he received for engineering the end of the Cold War?
  • Explain the Red Scare
  • Write a DBQ essay about the three most important events of the Cold War
  • What is containment? Write a detailed essay about the topic?
  • Why was the Cold War such a driving factor behind the space race?
  • How did actions taken during the Cold War impact the current situation in the Middle East?
  • Discuss the nuclear arms race and the ways in which the Cold War has caused many volatile nations to have nuclear weapons.

All of our writers agree that these are great topic ideas and that students could pick any one of these questions or ideas and write an excellent essay. However, any student who would like additional help should contact us. There are writers on staff who have backgrounds in Foreign Policy, and World History who have the skills and talents to help with any essay related to the Cold War.

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