One major paper that I did that definitely represents my growth as a historical thinker would have to be the first term final paper I wrote which answered the question of: How has social forces influenced the lives of youth in Boston and how have they acted in response? This essay allowed me to look at different historic events that took place in Boston like the women of Lowell Mills, who went through hardships, and struggles in order to receive a decent place to work, the desegregation of school in 1974, which called for school to be desegregated, thus creating forced busing, and the transformation of Dudley Street, and the social forces that influenced a place with poverty and crime. This paper indeed allowed me to take a glimpse of what life was like, and how the youth of Boston acted in response of those problems.
Writing this paper allowed me to realize that people have been fighting for what is right for a long time, and fighting for what you believe in only means being an activist. It was incredible to allow myself to step out of my comfort zone, and deal with issues that weren’t interesting to me before. Only then did I realize that writing that paper was my history, and everything that had happened has now made a difference in the kind of lifestyle that I am able to live today. For example I am able to go to school wherever I choose, I am able to get good high paying jobs even if I am a female, and I am also able to live in a community where I have a voice, and a transformation was brought about. My community is only growing, because of what Dudley Street was, and because those incidents took place there is room for improvement, an idea of what life could be like if things didn’t change.
Social forces have been impacting our lives for centuries, but in writing this paper I learned that there is always room for improvement, and just because things may look at ease, and comfortable now, it took other peoples struggle, and dedication to make life the way it is now.