John Brown's Legacy

Interactive Rubric

To answer this question correctly, students must select Facts 2 and 3 and explain how each might provide context to help explain why the authors wrote the play in 1936.  Fact 2 might be relevant because it reveals the political motivations of the authors.  In an attempt to persuade others to oppose lynching, the authors may have used John Brown as an allegorical figure from the past.  Fact 3 provides valuable context about the political environment in which the play was written.  Concerns over racist policies in Germany may have motivated the authors to write a play as a commentary on racism.  

Level Description

Student selects a correct fact and explains how it might help explain the authors’ motivations for writing the play in 1936.  


Student selects a correct fact but provides an incomplete explanation of how the fact might help explain the authors' motivations.  


Student selects an irrelevant fact or selects a correct fact but does not provide a reasonable explanation for why it might help explain the authors’ motivations.