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The kitchen debate and cold war consumer politics pdf

07/01/2021 Client: saad24vbs Deadline: 2 Day

HIST 1228 - K. Freeland - Spring 2017


Essay on The Kitchen Debate and Cold War Consumer Politics

The 1950s were years of affluence and growth for the United States, and they were also peak years in the

Cold War with the Soviet Union. In the summer of 1959, the American Exposition in Moscow provided

an interesting combination of the two. Billed as an opportunity to promote understanding about the

culture of the US, and to improve relations between the two countries, the exposition showcased (among

other things) the latest home appliances and technologies available to the average American. In an

impromptu exchange in a model kitchen, Richard Nixon and Nikita Khrushchev used the display to

debate the relative merits of their societies in terms of consumer goods and gender roles.

The Kitchen Debate and Cold War Consumer Politics provides a wealth of primary documents related to

the debate itself, as well as the politics involved. It gives insight into how Soviets viewed the exhibition,

how both sides viewed each other, and what they considered to be the most important aspects of their


For this assignment, you will use the documents in the book to help answer the questions below

about the Kitchen Debate and the politics related to it. Type your responses in complete sentences.

Refer to the documents themselves to inform your answers, and cite the documents you use as your

evidence by number in parenthesis—this is an example (Doc. 4).

Part I. What messages did US officials hope to convey with the Exhibition? How was it received? What

were the main criticisms Soviet visitors had about the Exhibition? What did they feel was missing? (see

Documents 1, 2, 7, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 35)

Part II. The Kitchen Debate between Khrushchev and Nixon went beyond just the benefits of the modern

American kitchen. Looking at the conversation itself and several speeches given by Khrushchev, what

ideas does each side seem to focus on? Who do you think had better points? (see Documents 5, 6, 23, 37,

and 38)

Part III. How did Soviets view the modern American housewife of the 1950s? How did Americans view

Soviet women? What did each society seem to consider important for women at that time? What role

could household technology play for each side of the debate? (see Documents 5, 6, 25, 26, 28, 29, 31, 33,

34, 36 AND pages 17-24 in the Introduction)


 12-pt. Times New Roman, double-spaced.

 Break the essay into three parts, with a heading at the top of Part I, Part II, and Part III.

 3 FULL pages long minimum.

 Write full, properly-formed paragraphs in complete sentences that answer each of the questions

asked in each part and incorporate the documents to prove your answers.

 Have a rough draft of your essay checked over in the Writing Center or MyWritingLabPlus

(SmartThinking & PearsonWriter) by 4/18. This rough draft must be attached to the back of your

final copy.

 Final draft is due in class and on turnitin.com on 4/25. Turnitin.com Class ID#: 14526134,

password: roosevelt

HIST 1228 - K. Freeland - Spring 2017


Do not sit down and try to accomplish this all in one day. It’s not that kind of assignment. This

assignment is designed to get you thinking critically about the documents. That will take several days. Be

sure to read the Introduction to the book, which provides historical context to the topics explored in the


Grading Standard (Approximate):

A An “A” quality paper completes all requirements of the assignment, including a clear,

concise, and persuasive thesis statement sustained by analysis of evidence throughout well-

developed body paragraphs. This quality of paper does not suffer from any grammatical,

structural, nor editorial weaknesses and is easy to read and understand.

B A “B” quality paper completes all requirements of the assignment but does not sustain the

level of clarity, precision and persuasiveness as an “A” category paper. This may be the

result of an unclear and non-specific thesis statement, factual errors, or insufficient use of

evidence. Generally “B” quality papers suffer only minimally from grammatical,

structural, or editorial problems. In most cases, “B” quality essays can easily move into the

“A” category with more careful revisions.

C A “C” quality paper completes all requirements of the assignment but suffers from lack of

clarity, precision and persuasion. “C” quality papers do not possess a clear and persuasive

thesis statement, may contain factual errors, and generally do not use evidence sufficiently

to sustain an argument. This quality essay also usually suffers from poor structure,

organization, and demonstrates a lack of effort on the part of the author.

D A “D” quality paper in most cases is “rushed” and fails to provide a clear and persuasive

thesis statement. The use of evidence and paragraph organization usually is non-existent

and poor grammar and careless mistakes are common-place.

F This quality paper fails to meet the requirements as set forth in the assignment.

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