Developing a Thesis Question: Which labels for the Middle Ages best describe the era between 500 and 1400 in Europe: The Dark Ages, the Age of Feudalism, the Age Faith, or the Golden Age of Europe? You must discuss three labels. After you analyze the sources provided, what conclusion can you make about which label best describes the Middle Ages? 1. Search for facts in each document. Pay attention to who the authors of each document are. Are they reliable sources? 2. Look for common trends or information. Is there overwhelming evidence that supports one aspect over another? 3. Find ways to dismiss or downplay opposing viewpoints. 4. Make sure your thesis answers the question and attempts to prove something. Develop a Thesis Take some time to write a thesis of your own! The Middle Ages occurred after the Fall of Rome and became a Dark Age of disorder and chaos. The Middle Ages should be labeled as the Age of Feudalism because this decentralized system dominated and influenced the political, economic and social aspects of Western Europe. The Middle Ages began as a Dark Age but should be known as the Age of Faith due to the dominating power and influence of the Roman Catholic Church. The Middle Ages has a reputation for being a time of disorder and ignorance, however, it should be known as a golden age for its major achievements in art and architecture. Life during the Middle Ages is proof that even during times of violence and destruction, humans will do all they can to learn and preserve knowledge and new ideas. Therefore, it should be labeled as a Golden Age. Missing Voice Document After you analyze the sources provided, what additional document/s would you need to help prove your thesis about this situation! A commoner A diary entrance to understand what influenced their lives the most. What was most important to them and why? Probably, their daily lives were consumed with work and dominated by Church law. There was probably not much time for education and recreation. A chart depicting the amount of lives lost during the Barbaric invasions This would help prove the massive extent to which civilization was destroyed by the Germanic invasions. It would interesting to compare these numbers to the losses of the Eastern Empire which was able to retain their centralized government. A passage from a book or a drawing that depicts the intellectual work of the monks in the monasteries This document may provide evidence of the preservation of Greco-Roman ideas, the illumination of the Bible, or perhaps evidence of bee keeping, beer making, or medical studies. DBQ Essay Structure I. Introduction and Thesis statement II. Body Paragraph #1 Topic sentence – First subtopic grouping Group Documents to prove your thesis Analyze documents (Don’t just summarize) Why did author say what they said? How does each document prove a point? Why are these sources reliable? III. Body paragraph #2 Transition sentence – second subtopic grouping Group Documents to prove your thesis Analyze documents (Don’t just summarize) Why did author say what they said? Are these sources reliable? How can you dismiss them? Remember: Include POV (point of view) analysis for at least 2 docs. IV. Missing documents – What documents would you need to help prove your thesis? Should provide two! V. Conclusion – restate thesis and conclusion. Try to broaden to larger themes.