by Mike Kubic
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
'Shut the Door' Speech
- Senator Ellison DuRant Smith
During a 1924 congressional debate on immigration, a senator from South Carolina argued that we should “shut the door and breed up a pure, unadulterated American citizen."Pair “‘Shut the Door’ Speech” with “A Refugee Looks Back” and ask students to compare the viewpoints of President Truman and Senator Durant Smith. What reasons do the politicians give to substantiate their positions regarding immigration policy?
Diary of a Teenage Refugee
This account comes from a 16-year-old Syrian girl named Amira and details the past three years of her life in a refugee camp in the neighboring country of Lebanon.Pair “Dairy of a Teenage Refugee” with “A Refugee Looks Back” and ask students to compare the experiences of the two narrators. How do the experiences of a Syrian refugee compare to Kubic’s experiences as a post-WWII refugee? Teachers should note that while the texts discuss similar topics, the "Diary of a Teenage Refugee" is a more appropriate text for lower-level readers.
‘Chasing Memories’ In Their Refugee Camp 40 Years After Fleeing Vietnam
- Hansi Lo Wang
Vietnamese American refugees who fled communist rule in their home country in the late 20th century reunite at a former processing center.Pair “‘Chasing Memories’ in Their Refugee Camp 40 Years After Fleeing Vietnam” with “A Refugee Looks Back” and ask students to explore the different reasons that refugees are forced to flee their homes. What are the similar needs and discomforts that the narrators of each text express as they struggled to settle in a new country?
Nearly 1 Million South Sudanese Refugees In Uganda
In the text “Nearly 1 Million South Sudanese Refugees In Uganda,” Scott Simon interviews Noah Gottschalk about the experiences of South Sudanese refugees at settlements in Uganda.Pair “A Refugee Looks Back” with “Nearly 1 Million South Sudanese Refugees In Uganda” and ask students to discuss how the refugee crisis of the past compares to today. What obstacles do refugees face after being forced to flee their country? How might “A Refugee Looks Back” act as a warning about the current refugee crisis that the world is facing?
Where the World's Refugees Are
- Malaka Gharib
In “Where The World’s Refugees Are,” Malaka Gharib discuss where refugees have sought safety in the world and how they have been received by their host countries.Pair “A Refugee Looks Back” with “Where The World’s Refugees Are” and ask students to discuss how refugee crises of the past compare to the present. How has America’s response to refugees attempting to seek asylum changed over time? How does “A Refugee Looks Back” help inform readers on what countries should do in response to the current refugee crisis?
The Truman Doctrine Speech
- President Harry S. Truman
In “The Truman Doctrine Speech,” President Truman asks Congress for resources to aid Greece and Turkey, allowing them to maintain their freedom during the Cold War.Pair “The Truman Doctrine Speech” with “A Refugee Looks Back: What the 1940s Teach Us About Today’s Crisis” and ask students to compare the ideas of President Truman in each text. Are they consistent? Why or why not? Students should use evidence from each text to support their ideas. How does each text demonstrate the threat of communism at the time? How could these texts influence leaders today? Is “The Truman Doctrine Speech” still relevant? Why or why not?