English 101

Read “Despair, Love, and Loss: A Journey Inside West Virginia’s Opioid Crisis” by Campbell Roberston

Once you have read the article, please reflect on the questions below and

answer them thoughtfully and completely.

  1. What do you know about the opioid crisis? Tell us in 1-2 sentences.
  2. Now research the opioid crisis in the US: How many people are addicted to opioids in the United States? How many deaths have been caused by opioids? What role did doctors and Purdue Pharma play in the opioid crisis? Write one complete paragraph with your results. Use a reliable source such as the Centers for Disease Control [CDC] or The New York Times other credible sources. Cite your source[s].
  3. Research the Sackler family and Purdue Pharma; What role did the Sackler family play in the opioid crisis? How many states filed lawsuits against them? What is the status of the lawsuits? Use reliable sources. Cite your sources in your response.
  4. What is Robertson’s main insight about the opioid crisis in West Virginia? Cite specific passages that show what the author thinks.
  5. Roberston includes photographs as evidence for the opioid crisis, but they are not discussed in detail. Pick one and write a brief paragraph explaining how it supports the author’s point. Then insert your explanation into the essay’s text. Does it improve the overall analysis—why or why not?
  6. How does Robertson establish authority to write on this topic? How do you see that the topic matters to the author, and how does the author appeal to readers to make it matter to them as well? Point to specific passages form the text to support your response.

If you were familiar with the opioid crisis before you read this essay, do you think Robertson describes the crisis accurately? If you were not familiar with it, do you think you know understand its impact—and has Robertson made you want to read more of it? Explain

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