Teaching with the News
Lesson: Kashmir Then and Now
This lesson has been developed to accompany India: Conflicts Within, a project of the Pulitzer Center.
- Learn about the historical origins of the conflict in Kashmir.
- Explore the current situation in Kashmir.
- Identify quantitative and geographical data in media sources.
- Consider the role of perspective when analyzing sources.
"Kashmir, The Origins of the Dispute"
BBC News, by Victoria Schofield
"Kashmir Activists Don't See Guns as the Answer"
The Washington Times, by Jason Motlagh
"Kashmir's Uneasy Peace"
Video reported by Jason Motlagh
Students should read "Kashmir, The Origins of the Dispute" and answer the questions on the handout.
In the Classroom
Questions noted with a * below can be answered directly on the India: Conflicts Within website.
- Student #1 will label on the map each geographical location mentioned in the article.
- Student #2 will record all of the numbers and dates in the article along with a short phrase about their significance.
- Student #3 will underline the five most important sentences in the article.
Review findings as a whole class.
- According to the article, what do the people of Kashmir want? How do the Kashmiris in the article regard India and Pakistan?*
- Refer to the article, "Kashmir, The Origins of the Dispute." Ask students what reasons they can give for why the origins of the dispute are relevant to what is happening there today?
- Challenge students to think of reasons why the original dispute may be less relevant. How might different interpretations of the causes of the dispute and conflict affect the process of finding solutions to the conflict?
- What do the different perspectives have in common? Do any perspectives not share any common ground?*
- Remind students that clip is the work of a journalist. How is journalism similar to other reports they may see on television or the internet? How is it different?
- Ask students to consider the fact there is no narrator in video clip. Why do they think that the journalist would choose to do this?
- Do journalists have perspectives? What perspective do they think this journalist has?
Ask students to imagine how these stories might have been reported by an Indian, Kashmiri, or Pakistani journalist. How might their perspective affect their reporting? Ask them to rewrite the opening paragraph of one or more of the stories they have read or heard to reflect one of those perspectives.
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