Kennedy’s Last Days: The Assassination That Defined a Generation is told in a first-person perspective with accompanying photos, maps, and reproductions of historical events that shaped Kennedy as a hero and leader and that document events leading to the assassination.
Kennedy’s Last Days is broken into four parts.
- “The Making of a Hero” begins with a cultural perspective of the 1960’s and the role it played in creating “JFK the hero” and of “JFK the leader.” [PERSONAL NOTE: This is one of my favorite parts - it is a wonderful reflective look at the 1960's]. It then details Kennedy’s role in World War II saving his PT boat crew when their ship was destroyed in the Pacific by a Japanese destroyer, and later as his budding political role as a young Congressman from Massachusetts. While documenting Kennedy’s role in World War II, O’Reilly briefly compares Kennedy’s heroic actions to that of Oswald who defected to the Soviet Union in the late 1950’s.
- “The Making of a Leader” begins with the newly elected President Kennedy and the critical events that shaped this young leader. O’Reilly describes the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the war in Vietnam, and the rise of the Civil Rights Movement and Martin Luther King.
- “Dallas, Texas – November 1963” takes the reader through the last days of Kennedy’s life from the planning of his tour through Dallas to his tragic death. Oswald’s actions are described in these last days as are Kennedy’s.
- The Making of a Legend” describe the aftermath of his assassination from his funeral to the country’s reactions and the numerous institutions and initiatives that were founded upon his death.
The Armageddon Letters, can be used for advanced middle school readers, high school and college (please see a previous post for more details: http://departingthetext.blogspot.com/2013/07/the-armageddon-letters-and-cuban.html) what I plan to do here is give a brief overview and discuss how they might be used together.
The Armageddon Letters is a trans-media project launched in 2012 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis. It incorporates multi-media storytelling format incorporating a comic, a dramatic rendering, text, and the actual letters exchanged between the leaders during the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
There are links on its web site, http://www.armageddonletters.com/, allowing visitors to view the graphic novel chapters found in The Armageddon Letters book, its ongoing blog, and links to the following "short films" they've created:
- Who Cares about the Cuban Missile Crisis
- Welcome to the Armageddon Letters
- Be Castro
- Be Khrushchev
- Be Kennedy
- Visit the armageddonletters.com link so they can interact with Castro, Khrushchev and Kennedy;
- Read and re-enact the opening acts and scenes of the book introducing the more complicated text and letters ; and/or
- Read through the comic renderings of the content, found before the dramatic rendering of the material.
As always, thank you for your visit.
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