New Identities: Nationalism and Religion 1850 - 1914 CE

WEB LESSON Although there was a rise in secular culture during this period, people also continued to define themselves through religion. Religious identities sometimes clashed with nationalistic identities, while in other instances they spurred nationalistic movements. The focus of this unit is on the complex relationship between nationalism and religion from 1850-1914. By studying these two great forces, students will be able to understand the tensions and boundaries that existed on the eve of World War I and the conflicts and changes that have continued through the twentieth century and into the twenty-first.

Geography and Cultures of Muslim Countries

WEB LESSON This lesson features hands-on projects for students that help them learn about the Muslim country of their choice. Students collaborate to conceptualize an informational website and television commercial for a given country. Alternatives include preparing a speech at the UN and designing a pamphlet about a chosen country.

Bringing Down an Empire: Gandhi and Civil Disobedience

WEB LESSON This Constitutional Rights Foundation lesson shows students how Mahatma Gandhi used religious principles to change modern history. Gandhi led the movement for independence in India by using non-violent civil disobedience. His tactics drove the British from India, but he failed to wipe out ancient Indian religious and caste hatreds.

Suppression or Liberation: Islam, Hijab and Modern Society

WEB LESSON Practice of religious beliefs sometimes comes into conflict with the norms and standards of a modern society. This is the case in Islam with hijab, the scarf that women use to cover their head and neck, as well as with other garments worn to maintain modesty. Some people who are not Muslim, as well as some people who are, see the garment as a way of repressing women and making them fade into the background of society. However, some women who wear hijab view it as a symbol of the strength of their beliefs and respect for their own bodies. Through the materials and videos presented in this lesson, students will explore the different views of womenâ??s modesty and hijab among Muslims and in modern society.

India Partition

WEB LESSON The decision to partition India into two countries as part of its independence from Britain in August 1947 had dramatic consequences. The creation of Pakistan as a separate, Muslim state from India, a secular state, set off waves of displacement, migration, and violence. In this Stanford History Education Group lesson, students weigh the options of leaders in 1947 and use primary sources to evaluate the religious and other reasons for the Partition Plan.

Sudan, Imperialism, and the Mahdi's Holy War

WEB LESSON This Constitutional Rights Foundation lesson focuses on the role of Islam as a unifier of people in Egypt and Sudan against British and French imperialism. In the late 19th c. Muhammad Ahmad, a local religious leader of traditional Islam, considered himself to be The Mahdi, or the "Expected One." In other words he and his followers believed that he had been sent by God at the end of times to rule the world in preparation for the Messiah. He referred to his battle to free Sudan from British control as a holy war. Students are asked to serve in the role of a Board of Inquiry to evaluate the actions taken and if war could have been avoided.