Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Study Sheet, HST 344, Final Exam Spring, 2013

HST 344, Final Exam Study Sheet, Spring 2013
 Tuesday, April 30, 2:30-4:20 Dr. Heitmann
I Identification and Significance. (20 pts).  I will choose four of the following and you must answer two.
1.      Ralph Nader and the Corvair
2.      The Federal Government, the automobile industry, and the 1960s
3.      Bullitt and the automobile chase scene
4.      NASCAR in the recent past
5.      Women, Poetry, and Passion, post-1980
6.      Who Killed the Electric Car?
7.      The Revenge of the Electric Car

II  Essay. (40 pts.) Answer one of the following by writing a coherent essay harnessing factual evidence whenever possible.  Your answer should have both an introduction and a conclusion.  For the final exam I will choose two of the following three essays!

A.     It seems obvious that the current decline in the American automobile industry didn‘t happen during the past few years.  In your own words and using what you have learned in this course; trace the decline of the American industry beginning with the 1950s, making sure to discuss key aspects and developments in chronological fashion.  Do you think this decline was inevitable or not, and why?
B.     Culture, past or present, high or popular, is important.  Discuss the culture related to the automobile in America between 1950 and 2000, making sure to include examples from music, film, and literature (including poetry).  Broadly speaking, what does post-WWII car culture tell us about how automobiles contributed to being American during the second half of the 20th century?
C.     In James Flink’s article, “The Three Stages of Automobile Consciousness,” the author remarks that “Automobility has had more important consequences for 20th century American man than even Frederick Jackson Turner’s frontier had for our 19th century forebears.”  Elaborate on this idea within the context of the second half of the 20th century.

III. In a well-organized and factual essay that contains both an introduction and a conclusion, answer the following question. (40 pts.).  You must answer this question. 
Ben Hamper’s Rivethead: Tales from the Assembly Line is a remarkable tale focusing on the nature of assembly line work at General Motors during the late 1970s and early 1980s. It is among other things, quite an indictment of General Motors’ management practices, ironically coming from an unhinged worker.  At the same time, it is sorry depiction of UAW work ethic. First, being as specific and detailed as possible, describe Hamper’s portrayal of management style and managers.  Secondly, how did Hamper and others cope with their work environment? To what degree do you think that Hamper’s account is on target, or perhaps not?  

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