Discussing Xenophobia

Fear Narrative

Work Time

During the Great Depression, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt told the nation in his first inaugural address, “So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” Roosevelt’s words have the ring of truth. Even so, today many people are afraid. Look at the subjects of recent news headlines to see possible causes for their fear:

  • A jet plane crashes on the runway, killing passengers.
  • Suicide bombers and other terrorists detonate bombs in public places.
  • Deranged shooters enter schools and theaters and open fire on the innocent.

The response of some people may be, “It can’t happen to me.” Nevertheless, all people have experienced fear.

  • Think about a time when you were very afraid. What were the circumstances? Draft a narrative account, a true story, about the time you remember. Try to engage the reader with exact and vivid language.

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