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2014 Oscar nominees: History themed topics of slavery and scandal in American films

"12 Years a Slave" is based on real life events of slavery in America.

“12 Years a Slave” is based on real life events of slavery in America.

If you’re interested in American history and in movies, then you’ll love this year’s Oscar nominees. The list of nominees for best picture includes films based on a true story of slavery in America, a political scandal from the 1970s, the hijacking of an American vessel by Somali pirates and the downfall of a corrupt Wall Street stockbroker. Here’s a look at three of the stories to be found in the 2014 nominees for best picture.

12 Years a Slave

“12 Years a Slave,” based on the book of the same name, is the true story of Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York who in 1841 was abducted and sold into slavery.

The text is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Its electronic version is available for reading online. The book is the narrative of Solomon Northup’s experiences as a slave in pre-Civil War America. Read more

American history: World War 2 military history research paper topics

U.S. Navy sailors rescue survivors from the USS West Virginia during the Japanese air raid on Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941. (Credit: U.S. Navy)

U.S. Navy sailors rescue survivors from the USS West Virginia during the Japanese air raid on Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941. (Credit: U.S. Navy)

December is not only known for its holidays; it has a special place in American history. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the U.S. was drawn into World War 2. If you’re looking for research paper topics for a paper on military history, you might want to explore America’s war in the Pacific.

World War 2 in the Pacific

It all began on December 7, 1941, at 7:55 a.m. Hawaii time. A swarm of Japanese dive bombers descended on the island of Oahu and completed a surprise attack on the military base of Pearl Harbor. Read more

Top fashion designers in American history: Ideas for your fashion design paper

Throughout the years, the frequent changes of the fashion industry are what have made it so successful. (Courtesy of Stephoccitan)

Throughout the years, the frequent changes of the fashion industry are what have made it so successful. (Courtesy of Stephoccitan)

When you think about American history, the topics of fashion design and merchandising may not be top of your mind. Yet, top fashion designers have played an important part in building our unique American culture. If your assignment is to write a research paper on fashion design, then be sure to take the time to explore all the possible approaches that such a paper could take. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Ideas for your research paper

Clothing began as a necessity — a protection against a harsh environment and the elements. But humans also have a need for self-expression and for decoration. Read more

The American Civil War: Free resources for top research topics on Civil War facts

The American Civil WarFrom 1861 to 1865, the United States fought a war over the right of secession, as eleven states wanted to separate from the Union. The causes for the war, and the reasons for its outcome, remain topic for debate over a hundred years later. And Americans continue to celebrate a holiday that was originally designed to honor the approximately 620,000 soldiers who died during the action: Memorial Day, which was founded in 1868. In honor of Memorial Day, we at Questia are offering five free resources for top research topics on Civil War facts. You can also find even more resources on Civil War topics, including specific battles like the Battle of Gettysburg or topics like African-American Soldiers in the Civil War, in our Civil War library. Read more