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Stage 6 | History
Course: Preliminary HSC Modern History Stage 6 Year 11 Duration 4 weeks

Detail 16 hours

Unit Title: Investigating Modern History


a. The Nature of Modern History
5. The Representation and Commemoration of the Past.
- 9/11 memorial and museum
Content Focus: Students investigate ways in which the past is represented and commemorated. The Historical concepts and skills
content is to be integrated as appropriate.

Outcomes Focus Historical Skills


A Student: The following historical skills are targeted in this unit:
-MH11-6: analyses and interprets different types of sources for evidence to 1. Undertake the process of historical inquiry.
support an historical account or argument. 2. Use historical concepts and skills to examine the modern past.
-MH11-7: discusses and evaluates differing interpretations and 3. Communicate their understanding of history, sources and evidence, and
representations of the past. historical interpretations.
-MH11-9: communicates historical understanding, using historical knowledge,
concepts and terms, in appropriate and well-structured forms.
-MH11-10: discusses contemporary methods and issues involved in the
investigation of modern history.

Life skills
A Student:
-MHLS6-1: engages with personal connections to history.

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-MHLS6-2: engages with the concepts of time and chronology.
-MHLS6-8: engages with a variety of sources to investigate the past.
-MHLS6-9: engages with differing interpretations and representations of the
past.
-MHLS6-11: communicates information about the past using historical terms
and concepts.
-MHLS6-12: engages with the investigation of modern history.

Unit Context within scope and sequence The importance of this learning
This unit will be taught in the first 4 weeks of term 1 in year 11. It will serve as The attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 is the biggest
an introductory unit for the complete stage 6 Modern History course. This unit terrorist attack in United States history. This event changed the world. This unit
is designed to trigger student interest and engagement and to prepare students examines the resilience of humanity and how representation and
for historical inquiry, investigation and research. Students will gain an commemoration are important for various reasons. The site Ground Zero where
understanding of what the Modern History course entails and begin to develop the twin towers once sat is now a memorial and museum precinct, honouring
the skills they will need to complete the preliminary and HSC course. the people that lost their lives in this tragic event. It is important for students to
learn within this unit to understand the purpose of commemoration and how
they can continue to preserve this sacred custom in the future.
Key Terms Key Events
 World Trade Center  9/11 attacks
 Twin Towers  Immediate aftermath
 9/11  Rescue and Recovery
 Ground Zero  Clean up
 9/11 memorial/museum  (Re)construction of Ground Zero
 Artefacts  Construction of 9/11 memorial and museum
 Rescue  Opening of Ground Zero and 9/11 memorial and museum
 Recovery
 Preservation

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Literacy Focus Numeracy Focus ICT Focus Differentiation


Source analysis Statistics 9/11 memorial interactive website Group Work
Diaries and journals Data Youtube videos Think, pair, share
Writing tasks Time lapse video Documentaries Extension work
Articles Timelines Interactive timelines Extension inquiry-based work
Source analysis
Video tasks
Kahoot! Quiz

Assessment overview

Assessment for learning Assessment as learning Assessment of learning


 Class Discussion  Kahoot quiz  PowerPoint Presentation
 Think, Pair, Share  Self-reflection  Reviews
 Source analysis  Peer-assessment  Create your own work
 Class museum  Inquiry questions  Class museum

Week/Sequence Content Teaching and learning strategies including Resources


(4x60min classes assessment for learning
per week)
Term 1 Students investigate:  Introduction: class discussion/brainstorm.  White board

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Week 1 The public nature of o What is History?  White board markers

history and the uses of o List ideas on the whiteboard.


 Think, pair, share activity: In 50 words or less write
history
about public history and its use.
o Discuss in pairs, then present ideas back to
the class.
o Take notes on what others believe about
public history.
 Use the previous ideas to generate class debate:
o Discuss differing opinions about public
history, its use and society’s role in this.
o Including the impact of historical events and
the significance of public history.
o Consider why society preserves and
commemorates certain aspects of history and
not others.
 Choose an important historical moment from your life
(can be anything). Write a 500-word response stating
why you chose this moment. Consider its significance
and impact in your response.
 Extension: does this response match your
ideas/beliefs about public history? Look back
through your work, contrast and critique these pieces
of work. Consider any similarities or differences and
discuss why these may have occurred.

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Term 1 How history is  Recall a time when you attended a memorial or  Post-it notes
Week 1 represented through museum.  Teacher laptop
o Write down where you went.  Youtube
ONE of the following:
o Ponder the following questions: why did you
memorials, museums,
go? Did you have any background of the
the media, film, place? How did you feel about going? How
documentaries and did you feel at the memorial/museum? Did

online you learn anything? Would you go again?


Why/Why not? What did you like/dislike?
Why? Was it an appropriate and justified
memorial/museum?
 Watch the following youtube clip
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4ZHOHrOWuk
 Quick class discussion about the clip. What did you
just see? How does it make you feel? What are your
beliefs behind this attack?
 In even groups, discuss how you would represent the
9/11 attacks.
 In your groups, demonstrate to the rest of the class
how you would turn the classroom into a museum
representing 9/11.
Term 1 How history is  In pairs, sign on to a device (preferably laptop) go to Student devices
Week 2 represented through https://www.911memorial.org/interactive-museum- Kahoot!
experience.
ONE of the following:
memorials, museums,

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the media, film,  Follow the prompts and explore the 9/11 interactive

documentaries and museum. Click on the different options, take note of


what you see.
online
 Share your findings with the class. Which prompts did
you click on? Why? Did you learn anything new from
the interactive memorial?
o Peer-assessment
 Access resource 1 and log in to the Kahoot! Quiz.
 Back in pairs, access the interactive ground zero
timeline on
https://timeline.911memorial.org/#Timeline/3. Has
this timeline changed any opinions you had? Share
your thoughts with the class.
 Based off your knowledge and understanding write a
one paragraph response stating why you believe it
took so long for the memorial and museum to be
built.
 OPTIONAL EXTENSION: Conduct your own research
and write another paragraph include data and
statistics of the build e.g. how many people helped
build this memorial/museum? What materials were
used? Etc.
o Self-assessment
 Create a piece of work (can be anything, e.g. written
piece, video, podcast, etc.) that demonstrates your
understanding of memorials/museums.

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o In your work, consider the implications of
memorials/museums. Discuss why they exist
and the purpose behind this.
o OPTIONAL EXTENSION: Are
memorials/museums an appropriate way to
represent history?
Term 1 The need for critical  Why do we need to analyse representations of the  Student devices
Week 3 analysis of past?  Google docs
o Think, pair, share.  Email
representations of the
 Discuss historical perspectives regarding
past and historical
representation of the past. E.g. Commemorating
methods that can be Remembrance Day through the allied perspective vs.
used for this purpose the axis perspective.
 Brainstorm different methods that may be used to
analyse historical representations. Use these ideas to
facilitate source work and understanding of historical
analysis.
 Examine the sources in resource 2. Answer the
questions. Send your response to the teacher via
email.
 Class discussion about the controversies of the 9/11
memorial and museum. What are your thoughts?
Consider this carefully and elaborate why you hold
these beliefs to the rest of the class.
 Complete resource 3.

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 EXTENSION: Watch documentary: Ground Zero
Supertower. Write a synopsis OR review of the
documentary. Consider your target audience and the
message you are trying to convey. Upload to google
docs.
Term 1 The various ways the  Looking back at previous weeks, identify other ways Student devices
Week 4 past is commemorated, the past can be commemorated. PowerPoint
o Think, pair, share. Teacher feedback forms
including the role of key
o Peer-assessment. Whiteboard
influences
o Write ideas on the whiteboard. Whiteboard Markers
e.g. nationalism and  In even groups, choose 1 method from the list on the Email
nation-building whiteboard.
o Create a PowerPoint presentation about your
method of commemoration.
o In your presentation, include how this is
done, why this is done and what the
significance or importance of this method of
commemoration is.
o Present back to the class.
 Answer the following question:
o What are your thoughts on commemoration
of the past?
o Do you believe it is necessary to represent the
past?

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o Is it possible that different aspects could
impact commemoration of the past, e.g.
nationalism, religion, culture, ethics?
o OPTIONAL EXTENSION QUESTION: Is
commemoration or representation of the past
morally and ethically tasteful? Why/Why
not?
o Create a piece of work that expresses your
thoughts/ideas, email this to teacher.
 Using all your knowledge gained, make an informed
decision about the commemoration of 9/11 through
the memorial/museum.
o Do you believe this is an appropriate method
of commemoration?
o How do you feel about the memorial?
o Do you believe nationalism, religion and
ethics played a part in the creation of this
memorial? If so, how? And why?
o EXTENSION QUESTION: What are your
thoughts on paying for admission into the
9/11 museum?
 Teacher feedback forms are handed out and
completed based on the topic and the learning.

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iDiscussion

This unit of work has been created with the intention of engaging and motivating senior students within the Modern History

course. The representation and commemoration of the past is an important topic to explore, the selection of the 9/11 memorial/museum

was made because the events are quite recent in terms of modern history. I believe this topic is attractive to senior students because of

the intensity of the events that occurred on September 11, 2001. Senior modern history students from 2018 onwards will have no personal

recollection of the events of 9/11, it is also unlikely that they would have followed the events in the decade long aftermath. This topic is

designed to facilitate higher order learning and inquiry, students will need to expand upon the learning in the unit to truly comprehend

the complexity of the events of 9/11 and the (re)construction of the ground zero site into the 9/11 memorial and museum.

This unit of work links to the curriculum intent found in the rationale in the Modern History syllabus (NESA, 2018). The

rationale states that the knowledge, understanding and skills acquired by students will prepare students for further learning, inform their

understanding of events, issues and interpretations and how to critically analyse these. The modern history course aims to develop

students in a way that they can make judgements through assessment of evidence and express their own ideas about history (NESA, 2018).

Students studying in the senior years should already be motivated as they choose their own subjects to study, however some

students may still find it difficult to be engaged and motivated in certain subjects or for the length of the course. Therefore, it is essential

to look at different teaching and learning approaches to address motivation and engagement in senior students.

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Socio-cultural learning theory is heavily reliant on the work of Vygotsky, stating that learning social interaction plays an

integral role in the improvement of learning (Wang, 2007). The unit incorporates a great deal of collaborative, active and cooperative

learning methods with the focus being on social interaction to improve essential skills for the modern history coursework. The purpose

of incorporating these learning approaches is to encourage inclusion and participation from all students.

Collaborative learning is a general capability within the Australian Curriculum making it a compulsory inclusion across all

subjects and topic areas (ACARA, n.d.). This approach encourages student participation aiming to improve skill development and

performance (Fakomogbon, & Bolaji, 2017). Class discussions are incorporated throughout the unit to facilitate collaboration within the

classroom, this type of learning allows students to convey ideas whilst also gaining knowledge from peers. Collaborative learning is central

to my personal pedagogy because I believe that students learn better within group and pair settings where they can bounce ideas off each

other and gain information from sources they may not have previously. It is encouraging to see students motivated about their learning,

that is the aim of this unit through collaborative and cooperative learning.

The cooperative learning method, similar to the collaborative learning, involves student participation in group work to assist

the learning of others (Okur Ackay, & Doymus, 2014). The cooperative learning model is targeted towards student’s participation by

encouraging the development of communication skills. Cooperative learning is a branch of active learning, it allows students of all

capabilities to increase self-confidence through peer learning and teaching (Okur Ackay, & Doymus, 2014). Active learning has been

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defined as applying course material that aids increased student contact and learning through the process of talking through and writing

about (Pedersen, 2010).

The cooperative learning model, much like the collaborative learning theory and active learning theory is evident throughout

this unit. Group work, pair work, and class discussion tasks are incorporated to encourage students to work together and to enhance their

learning by reducing the fear of learning off peers (Holtzman, 2005). Linking back to the rationale it is essential to provide students with

the knowledge and resources to effectively work in a respectful, responsible manner that enables them to be ethically and culturally aware.

This unit involves more group and pair work than it does individual work, because this unit is short timewise I thought it

necessary to get students actively involved in their learning of this topic to understand the intensity and complexity of the topic.

This unit is scaffolded in a way that includes different focuses literacy, numeracy and ICT. These different focuses are now a

compulsory component within all syllabi. The activities within the unit carefully ensure these components are met. Differentiation is also

evident within the unit, admittedly, there is a lack of differentiation for students that are not yet meeting the required standards, however,

the differentiation is included for the gifted and talented (GAT) students in the form of extension work. The extension work provided is

based on an historical inquiry approach, this type of approach “involves asking questions, finding information to answer those questions,

drawing conclusions based on evidence, and reflecting on possible solutions” (Levstik and Barton, 2005 as cited in Woyshner, 2010). This

approach is time consuming and requires student attention through the whole process, however, given these students are GAT, attention

should be less of an issue.

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I believe that every student should learn about history to not only learn about the past but to learn about the present and

hypothesise about the future. Modern history in particular teaches students about the world around them within the last 2 centuries. This

particular unit of work aligns with my beliefs about the curriculum because I believe that it will influence students to be active and

informed citizens as set out in the rationale (NESA, 2018).

iReferences

ACARA. (n.d.). General Capabilities Introduction. Retrieved from

http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/generalcapabilities/overview/introduction

9/11 anniversary at ground zero: ‘Crowds get smaller, but we want to be here’ [Image] (2015, September 11). Retrieved March 27, 2018, from

https://www.mercurynews.com/2015/09/11/911-anniversary-at-ground-zero-crowds-get-smaller-but-we-want-to-be-here/

9/11 attack: 20 haunting photos of World Trade Centre that sum up the tragedy [Image] (n.d.) Retrieved March 27, 2018, from

http://www.financialexpress.com/photos/business-gallery/850713/911-attack-20-haunting-post-tragedy-photos-of-world-trade-centre-

that-sum-up-the-tragedy/

9/11 Interactive Timelines. n.d. Timeline.911memorial.org. Retrieved March 27, 2018, from https://timeline.911memorial.org/#Timeline/3

At ground zero, a new American icon [Image] (2011, August 14). Retrieved March 27, 2018, from

https://www.salon.com/2011/08/13/divide_we_stand_interview/

Before and after @ ground zero [Image] (2008, June 07), Retrieved March 27, 2018, from https://www.flickr.com/photos/tzmartin/4009190815

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Discoveryfirstvids (2015, September 24) 9/11 world trade center attack real footage [Video file]. Retrieved March 26, 2018, from

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4ZHOHrOWuk

Earthcam (2014, May 15). Official 9/11 Memorial Museum Tribute in Time-Lapse 2004-2014 [Video file]. Retrieved March 25, 2018, from

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5teyjPeVco

Fakomogbon, M. A., & Bolaji, H. O. (2017). Effects of collaborative learning styles on performance of students in a ubiquitous collaborative mobile

learning environment. Contemporary Educational Technology, 8(3), 268-279. Accessed from:

http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=6&sid=21052bd0-ecf2-475a-9089-

9edb5dea7ec7%40sessionmgr4006

Ground Zero: September 11, 2001 - September 11, 2011 [Image] (2011, September 11). Retrieved March 27, 2018, from

http://archive.boston.com/bigpicture/2011/09/ground_zero_september_11_2001.html

Holtzman, M. (2005). Teaching sociological theory through active learning: The irrigation exercise. Teaching Sociology, 33(2), 206-212. Accessed from:

http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=6&sid=c018c6c5-d325-473e-a205-

7704b3844324%40sessionmgr4006

How Much Was Ground Zero Real Estate Worth After 9/11? It Was This Man's Job to Find Out [Image] (2015, September 15). Retrieved March 27,

2018, from https://www.bisnow.com/national/news/other/appraisal-of-ground-zero-site-produced-unique-set-of-challenges--49954

Interactive Museum Experience. (2018). National September 11 Memorial & Museum. Retrieved March 18, 2018, from

https://www.911memorial.org/interactive-museum-experience

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Laal, M., Khattami-Kermanshahi, Z., & Laal, M. (2014). Teaching and Education; Collaborative Style. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 116,

4057-4061. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.01.890

New South Wales Education Standards Authority. (2018). Modern History Stage 6: Rationale. Retrieved March 28, 2018, from

https://syllabus.nesa.nsw.edu.au/modern-history-stage6/rationale/

New South Wales Education Standards Authority. (2017). Modern History 11-12 syllabus. Retrieved from

https://syllabus.nesa.nsw.edu.au/assets/modern_history/modern-history-stage-6-syllabus-2017.pdf

Okur Akcay,N., & Doymus,K. (2014). The effect of different methods of cooperative learning model on academic achievement in physics. Journal of

Turkish Science Education (TUSED), 11(4), 17-30. doi:10.12973/tused.10124a.

Pedersen, D. E. (2010). Active and collaborative learning in an undergraduate sociological theory course. Teaching Sociology, 38(3), 197-206.

doi:10.1177/0092055X10370119.

Rescue Operations on Day After World Trade Center Terrorist Attack [Image] (2001, September 11). Retrieved March 27, 2018, from,

https://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/news-photo/rescue-operations-at-ground-zero-firefighters-search-for-news-

photo/123974446?#rescue-operations-at-ground-zero-firefighters-search-for-survivors-at-picture-id123974446

The Daily News 9/11 front pages [Image] (2011, September 12). Retrieved March 27, 2018, from http://www.nydailynews.com/news/daily-news-9-

11-front-pages-gallery-1.17464?pmSlide=1.17545

Wang, L. (2007). Sociocultural learning theories and information literacy teaching activities in higher education. References & User Services Quarterly,

47(2), 149-158. Accessed from http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=2&sid=d74d47fe-d31a-

4217-a044-a57a30536f2d%40sessionmgr4007

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Woyshner, C. (2010). Inquiry teaching with primary source documents: an iterative approach. Social Studies Research and Practice., 5(3), 36-45.

Retrieved from http://www.bu.edu/sed/files/2013/11/2010SSRPQ3-4_Woyshner_FINAL21.pdf

APPENDIX

Scope and Sequence


Course Term 1 Term 2 Term 3 Term 4
Preliminary Topic: Investigating Modern History: Topic: Case Study 2: The Meiji Topic: Shaping the Modern World: Students start the HSC course in this
5. The representation and Restoration The Age of Imperialism term.
commemoration of the past.
Ground Zero/ 9/11 attacks Historical Investigation Syllabus outcomes:
MH11-1, MH11-2, MH11-3, MH11-4,
Case Study 1: American Civil War Syllabus outcomes: MH11-5, MH11-6, MH11-7, MH11-8,
MH11-1, MH11-2, MH11-3, MH11-4, MH11-9.
Syllabus outcomes: MH11-5, MH11-6, MH11-7, MH11-8 MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6-
MH11-1, MH11-2, MH11-3, MH11-4, MH11-9, MH11-10. 4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-7,
MH11-5 MH11-6, MH11-7, MH11- 9, MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6- MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, MHLS6-10,
MH11-10. 4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-7, MHLS6-11.
MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, MHLS6-10,
MHLS6-4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-11, MHLS6-12.
MHLS6-7, MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9,
MHLS6-11, MHLS6-12. Duration in weeks and hours: Duration in weeks and hours:
10 weeks/ 40 hours 10 weeks/ 40 hours
Duration in weeks and hours:
10 weeks/ 40 hours
Course Term 4 (year 11) Term 1 Term 2 Term 3
HSC Topic: Core Study: Power and Topic: National Study: USA 1919-1941 Topic: Peace and Conflict: Conflict in Topic: Change in the Modern World:
Authority in the Modern World the Pacific 1937-1951 Civil rights in the USA 1945-1968
1919-1946 Syllabus outcomes:
MH12-1, MH12-2, MH12-3, MH12-4, Syllabus outcomes: Syllabus outcomes:
Syllabus outcomes: MH12-5, MH12-6, MH12-7, MH12-8, MH12-1, MH12-2, MH12-3, MH12-4, MH12-1, MH12-2, MH12-3, MH12-4,
MH12-9. MH12-5, MH12-6, MH12-7, MH12-8, MH12-5, MH12-6, MH12-7, MH12-8,
MH12-9. MH12-9.
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MH12-1, MH12-2, MH12-3, MH12-4, MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6- MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6- MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6-
MH12-5, MH12-6, MH12-7, MH12-8, 4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-7, 4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-7, 4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6, MHLS6-7,
MH12-9. MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, MHLS6-10, MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, MHLS6-10, MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, MHLS6-10,
MHLS6-1, MHLS6-2, MHLS6-3, MHLS6-11. MHLS6-11. MHLS6-11.
MHLS6-4, MHLS6-5, MHLS6-6,
MHLS6-7, MHLS6-8, MHLS6-9, Duration in weeks and hours: Duration in weeks and hours:
MHLS6-10, MHLS6-11. Duration in weeks and hours: 8 weeks/30 hours 8 weeks/30 hours
8 weeks/ 30 hours
Duration in weeks and hours:
8 weeks/30 hours

Resource 1
https://play.kahoot.it/#/k/9feaad0d-41f2-4798-ab67-d9038bfbe127
Watch the video on the screen and then complete the Kahoot! Quiz as instructed.
Resource 2
Source A Source B

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Source C Source D

Source E

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Source F

Source G Source H

Choose one source. 19


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Describe what is happening in the picture.


Analyse its usefulness in representing the 9/11 memorial/museum.
Is your chosen source primary or secondary? Explain your reasoning.
What message is conveyed through your chosen source?
What is your initial response to that source?
Does this source trigger any type of emotion or feeling from you?
Put yourself in that moment. Create a piece of work that demonstrates your reaction/response/emotion/beliefs/attitudes, etc. This piece
of work can be a story, journal/diary entry, essay, video, podcast, illustration, artwork, etc.
Hand in to the teacher via email. If you create a physical response e.g. artwork, this may be handed in physically.

Resource 3
Read the following article:

At ground zero, a new American icon


A decade after 9/11, a skyscraper is finally rising on the site. An expert explains what the building says about us
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THOMAS ROGERS08.14.2011

If you've looked at the southern tip of Manhattan over the last few months, you've seen something rather unexpected looming over you.
1 World Trade Center, the 1,776-foot-tall centerpiece of the rebuilt ground zero site, is rising up towards the sky and increasingly
dominating the New York skyline. For many New Yorkers, it seems hard to believe this day would ever happen, since, for much of the
past decade, the building, formerly known as the Freedom Tower, had functioned mostly as a punch line: It was delayed by endless
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rivalries and conflicts among the site's developers, and its original design by architect Daniel Libeskind was reworked until it became a
fairly generic office building with a spire attached to the top.
As the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks approach, the new building is likely to get a lot more attention from the media, and with that
in mind, Basic Books has issued a new version of "Divided We Stand: A Biography of the World Trade Center," Eric Darton's beautifully
written book looking at the history and meaning of its predecessor, Minoru Yamasaki's iconic twin towers. In the expanded reissue,
Dalton, a New York writer and cultural historian who has taught at Fordham and New York University, describes how the original
towers transformed New York and our ideas about the American city, and how the city was impacted by their destruction.

Salon spoke with Darton over the phone about the Trade Center's historical role, the design for the new tower -- and what it says about
the decline of the American empire.
In the book you explain why the original World Trade Center towers, which were completed in 1971, were symbolic of a
particular time of change in American culture. How so?
Up until the time of the World Trade Center, much of the identity of Manhattan was as a port city. The rise of the first towering
skyscrapers in New York coincided with the city becoming the greatest port of the world. Then, with the rise of containerization and
other phenomena, port facilities increasingly moved out of cities, and when we lost the port to Newark and Elizabeth, N.J., it changed the
identity of New York from a maritime city that could manufacture and finance things to a city whose primary reason to exist was to be a
powerhouse of finance, insurance and real estate. The building of the World Trade Centers reflected that.

The World Trade Center also changed the way New York thought about itself. As you point out in the book, it made us feel more
self-important.
In any great city, these kinds of symbols end up shaping our idea of who we are and what we ought to be -- and sometimes that's in
sharp contrast to what we actually are. The World Trade Center presented New York as the dominant market center. These towers
articulated quite beautifully, quite unconsciously, that the city was ripping itself away from the rest of the world.

They really did look unlike the other skyscrapers in New York. From an architectural standpoint, the fact that they were twin
towers was genuinely pretty captivating.
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What fascinates me about the original towers is that they were so anomalous. The Petronas Towers [in Kuala Lumpur] and some of the
skyscrapers in China and Hong Kong have really bizarre Feng Shui, but you don't get anything as bizarre as the World Trade Center.
With the [flat-topped] World Trade Center, Yamasaki broke radically with the vocabulary of the skyscraper as we had known it, as it
classically derived from the cathedral and the spire. I looked at the Rainier Bank tower Yamasaki designed after the World Trade Center,
in Seattle, and a reviewer in 1967 called them Yamasaki's "balance of terror" because what he did was take the traditional skyscraper
with its spire and turned it upside down, and I think it's the same with the World Trade Center.
Yamasaki was a really interesting and tortured figure who had designed some really strange buildings, including a much-heralded major
public housing development [called Pruitt-Igoe, in St. Louis] that failed and was demolished by the federal government. He had learned
from one of his mentors, Frank Lloyd Wright, to break out of the box. But because he had to get this enormous amount of square footage
into a small footprint for the Port Authority, he essentially capitulated to the box and just cloned it. It was almost like a form of psychic
suicide for him.

I remember visiting New York before 9/11 and thinking about how much the World Trade Center dominated the city. I mean,
they were so tall, so much taller than anything else in the skyline.
I don't even know how it was worked out legally but apparently no surrounding structure in the city was permitted to rise to more than
half the height of the WTC. You ended up with towers that were supremely isolated.

When it was first proposed, the Freedom Tower had an interesting design by Daniel Libeskind. Since then it's been pretty
watered down, and renamed, and it looks kind of hideous.
There were aspects to Libeskind's original design that had a tremendous amount of energy. It did give this sense that something was
moving energetically in lower Manhattan and in New York and by extension in the U.S. It's unfortunate that it got denatured, but at the
same time it was so contrived and capricious. You don't really follow up a monster like the Trade Center with a caprice. It was a very
entertaining building, deeply entertaining, and it would have sent the message that New York is the entertainment capital of the world.
But how does that work in a place that's marked by that kind of heart loss?

What do you think the current design of the new World Trade Center says about New York and America's role in the world?
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They are two very conventional buildings that look highly securitized, and one looks really pretty freakish because of the armor around
it. But nothing about them says that we're going anywhere. For better or worse Yamasaki's statement did say something new. Their
message was that history was over [and that American hegemony would last forever]; they were two big bars at the end of the musical
score. After 9/11 you heard many, many people, even those who hadn't liked the Trade Center, say they wanted it to be built exactly as it
was, but the new buildings represent a kind of amnesia about the World Trade Center itself.
I would be really happy if anyone can provide me with a real justification for why these things are being built other than to satisfy the
need to build something massive in that space. I was always of the mind that we ought to really think long and hard about building
anything there that had that kind of center-of-the-world assertiveness to it. Why towers? I really have yet to hear any compelling
reasons why.
I think the most interesting part of the new World Trade Center, from what I can tell so far, is the memorial. I think that's going to be
physically very interesting. I can't project myself into a space I haven't been in yet, but I have a feeling it will harness some of the very
powerful energies that still exist in that site, not just from 9/11 but from all the long history of lower Manhattan.

In recent years, the center of the global economy has shifted away from New York, to other cities like London and Beijing. Do
you think these new generic-looking buildings reflect that?
As the idea goes, every 100 years the market center shifts, from Venice to Antwerp to Amsterdam to London to New York. There are
many cities recently that have become more New York-like, like London. These days, we're not really interested in big infrastructural
projects like the Three Gorges Dam, and if New York isn't the financial center of the world anymore, it should be an opportunity for us to
go, "OK, so we aren't this, then what are we?" If we embark on that project, our architecture could come out of a genuine propensity of
the city rather than being imposed on us.

Looking back at the past half-century, it seems like no other building has had the kind of impact on our collective memory as
the World Trade Centers over that period of time. Do you agree?
They're now iconic in the sense that the Parthenon represents old Athens and the Roman amphitheater represents ancient Rome.
During the Third Reich, Albert Speer, Hitler's chief architect proposed a theory of "ruin value." The idea was that the 1000-year Reich
would have these magnificent buildings and cities, and that even when they lay in ruins they would still have an incredible beauty, like
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Rome. We didn't achieve that from a physical standpoint. Our ruins are located in our collective and individual consciousness -- and for
that reason they're all the more iconic.

What is this article about?


Is it biased?
Does it change your opinion about the 9/11 memorial/museum?
Does this article trigger any emotions?
Is this a primary or secondary source?
Do you believe what the interviewee says is correct/truthful? Why/Why not?
What is the significance/importance of this article?
Would you be inclined to read the book that the article mentions?

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