Part IThe document titled, “Discourse of Virginia” was written by Edward Maria Wingfield in but was not published until 1860s. Wingfield directed his message to the people of Virginia and the world at large, telling them to look at the system of administration and understand their roles as citizens (Wingfield, 1). The author passed his message by narrating a story of the governance of a colony, led by a president. The author’s point of view is that the actions of leaders have huge impacts to people’s lives and every citizen should play a role in ensuring that only good leaders are elected to office.
To the greater part, the document was written to inform Virginia residents and members of the public at large that leadership has great impact to a country’s growth, peace, and stability. The article has taken an informational form; where the author works hard to inform the people that their liberation would only come if they are aware of the system of administration and the power of joining hands. The author includes direct words from the president to show the power of words when it comes to governance.
The author wrote the article at a time when there was great desperation and hopelessness in the colony. During this time, people struggled to put food on the table and lead normal lives. Ironically, leaders continued to reap great benefits and allowances at the expense of the poor (Wingfield, 1). The author wanted to persuade readers to rethink their ideas when electing their leaders. The author is not biased and does not want to make decisions for the people. He is however concerned that people will continue to suffer is they are not serious in scrutinizing leaders before electing them to office.
The document is reliable because it is written by a person who has been a great leader. The assumption is that he has experienced a lot of things as a leader and thus has a story to tell. To collaborate this document’ claims, I would consider a document that talks about characteristics of good leaders such as Bearing the Cross by Martin Luther King. Although the author’s message is quite appealing, I think he is wrong for painting a bad picture of “all leaders’ while he himself was a leader.
In the first document by Powhattan, the author highlights how Indians were oppressed by colonialists. The main message is that people con peacefully co-exist is they are willing to deal with their differences. In the second document, John Rofle explains of how intermarriage between an Indian and an American brought peace to Indian immigrants in the U.S. (Rofle 2). The author is basically saying that choose can live together well if they choose to and there is nothing like “racism” if people are willing to work together. In the third document, the author emphasizes on the importance of communication, especially after what the Indian immigrants in America went through under a native colonist. The author is convinced that issues of discrimination can be dealt with if people develop a common language to reach out to one another.
In the fourth document, the author details the interaction between Native Americans and the settlers. Most importantly, he highlights that most conflict resulted to from the failure to understand each other and embrace other peoples’ beliefs and traditions. In the fifth article, the author talks of how the settlers were not allowed to trade and to farm. He is basically referring to the discrimination that lasted during these times and how it has been dragged along to the current generation. In the sixth article, the author talks of the irreconcilable differences between the natives and the settlers. People are advised to come together as one nation. In the sevenths article, the focus is on the plight of Indians. The author calls for the ending of discrimination and building nation as one people.
The people in the mentioned communities were mainly worried of the issues of discrimination among the natives and the settlers. In these communities most people lived with great optimism that there will be better lives in the future, coming trough good leadership. They hoped that a day will come when all people treated each other with respect, irrespective of their religions, races, beliefs, or tribe. Living in this time has the challenge of the lack of togetherness. No community is willing to listen to the other because they feel their culture is better. The positive side is that civilization had begun to take effect and people could do a lot to change the future.
- Rofle John. John Rofle Letter. Smithsonian Source. Primary Sources. 1614. Accessed January 21, 2016. http://www.smithsoniansource.org/display/primarysource/viewdetails.aspx?TopicId=&PrimarySourceId=1171
- Wingfield, Edward. Discourse of Virginia. Lambeth Library: Boston. 1860.