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Instructions for Analytical Paper on Hamman Yaji's Diary

by Jim Jones (Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved)

This page contains instructions and a list of sources available on-line or in the WCU library to help you prepare an analytical paper for HIS312.   Your draft is due on or before Friday, March 14 (last class before spring break) and your final paper is due by the beginning of class on Monday, March 24 (first class after spring break).


  1. Read chapters 1-4 and 6 in the Vaughan & Kirk-Greene textbook.

  2. Determine your research topic using this table:

    WCU Student ID# ends in Topic
    4 or 7 Many entries concern the purchase of "cartridges"; i.e. bullets. Analyze Hamman Yaji's use of guns and ammunition, including how much he used, what they cost, where they came from, what problems did he face in obtaining them, and how did he use them?
    0 or 1 What role did horses play in Hamman Yaji's world?
    2, 3, 5 or 6 How did World War I affect Hamman Yaji and his region?
    8 or 9 Hamman Yaji supplied laborers to the colonial authorities. How often and for what purpose? How much were they paid? Who benefitted from their work, and how?

  3. Read Hamman Yaji's diary in chapter 5 of the Vaughn & Kirk-Greene textbook (also available and searchable at www.sukur.info/Mont/HammanYaji%20DIARY.pdf).   Take notes on your assigned topic as you read.

  4. Use the rest of the chapters in the Vaughan & Kirk-Greene textbook, plus the sources listed at the end of this page to expand your understanding of the contents of Hamman Yaji's diary.   NOTE: The discussion of the diary will begin on Monday, March 10, but you should finish reading the Vaughn & Kirk-Greene textbook and begin to read other sources before then.

  5. Prepare a draft: Write an original essay that presents a historical argument about your assigned topic, based on your reading and our class discussions. Your goal is to 1) organize your thoughts, 2) make sure you start early enough to produce a suitable final paper, and 3) provide something for the professor to compare to your final paper. It should contain 1200 to 2000 words (4-6 pages) and be typewritten on standard paper (8.5x11) with 1-inch margins and a 12-point font (Courier, Helvetica or Arial are acceptable), but because it is a draft, you do not need to worry about grammar, punctuation, spelling or reference notes.   (That will be important at the next stage - see the grading rubric below).   Turn in your draft on paper or by email (save as a PDF format file) on or before the beginning of class on the Friday before Spring Break.

  6. Complete your paper during Spring Break: Reread your draft and look for ways to make your argument more convincing, clearer and comprehensive (for example, by taking into account what we discussed in class on the Friday before Spring Break). Then correct all grammar, spelling and punctuation errors. If necessary, have someone else read your paper; don't rely on computer spellcheck or other software.

    Finally, add reference notes for all of the information in your paper (i.e. everything except for your conclusions). Footnotes are sufficient - you do not need to include a bibliography -- but you must provide references for everything, number them in sequence starting with 1 (not "i" or "I"), and format your reference notes correctly.  For example, if you refer to something that Hamman Yaji recorded on January 29, 1922, and it becomes your third footnote, your footnote should look like this:

    3. Hamman Yaji diary, January 29th, 1922, in James H. Vaughan & Anthony H. M. Kirk-Greene, The Diary of Hamman Yaji: Chronicle of a West African Muslim Ruler (Bloomington IN: Indiana Univeristy Press, 1995), 78.

    After that, each time that you cite the diary, you may use the short format:

    [note number]. Hamman Yaji diary, [date], in Vaughan & Kirk-Greene, [page number].

    All other reference notes must follow the rules of the Chicago Manual of Style (or its condensed version, edited by Kate L. Turabian, both of which are available in the WCU Library).   For a description of how to refer to the most common types of sources, visit this page.

  7. Submit your final draft on paper, not by email. Print out your paper on 8.5" x 11" white paper using standard 1" margins, black ink, and a 12-point font (Courier, Helvetica or Arial are acceptable).   Do NOT use a separate title page. Instead, at the top of the first page, type your name, WCU Student ID# and "HIS312" on the top line.   On the second line, type the topic that you were assigned. Staple your pages together in the upper left corner.

  8. Turn your printed paper in to the professor at or before the beginning of class on Monday, the day after Spring Break (March 24) and be prepared to discuss it in class on that day.


Please review the course policy prohibiting all forms of Academic Dishonesty including, but not limited to, copying another person's work with providing attribution, or presenting another person's ideas as your own.   It is the intent of the professor to prosecute all cases of Academic Dishonesty, so you need to make sure that you do not violate the rules.   With that in mind, you may discuss this assignment with other members of your class, and you may use any of the sources listed on this page, but you must write your paper in your own words and you must provide footnotes for the sources of any data that you use in your paper.   For assistance with formatting footnotes correctly, visit this page.


15 You submitted your draft on-time and in accordance with instruction 5 (above).
15 Your analysis shows that you read and understood Hamman Yaji's diary.
15 Your analysis shows that you consulted and understood additional primary and/or secondary sources.
10 Your paper includes correctly formatted reference notes for all of your data.
10 Your paper is written using complete sentences organized in logical paragraphs (except for data from tables or quoted material).
10 You expanded or explained all abbreviations in your paper, and you have used no ambiguous pronouns. In other words, if you used a pronoun, there is no question as to what it refers.
10 There are no spelling, punctuation or grammatical errors.
10 You followed instruction 7 (above) concerning paper color, font size, margins, title page, etc.
5 You made a useful contribution to the class discussion on March 24, 2013.
-50 Your paper failed to address your assigned topic.
-10 Your assignment is less than 1 hour late.
-100 Your assignment is 1 or more hours late.


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