I am finally able to start my independent seminar! This first post is more of an explanation and outline of what I will be doing, rather than me beginning research. This semester I will be studying around 3-5 different events from the year 1968 and doing in depth research into them and seeing how they affect the present. I have decided to focus on events in the US rather than around the world, since it is what interests me the most.
The idea for this came this summer when I was browsing through USA Today’s website and found this page about the year. It shows the different aspects of the year grouped into categories.
Very few people know this, but the year 1968 was very significant in US history. There were many important events including social movements such as Civil Rights, Anti-War, and Feminism. At the same time, we were in the peak of the Vietnam War, and tensions with the Soviet Union were very high to name a couple more. This is the list I have so far, though I will most likely narrow it down more later in the semester and it is potentially subject to some change.
- Assassination of MLK & The protests following shortly after.
- The signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1968
- Anti-War protests around the country
- Assassination of Robert Kennedy
- The opening of the Democratic National Convention (DNC)
- Tommie Smith and John Carlos protesting racism during the national anthem during the 1968 Olympics
Image: Zaktansky, John. 1968. CNHI.
My inspiration for this independent study came from my last year’s classes. In the first semester of Hiroshima to 911, I dived into the Communism unit by examining development Communism in several countries and completing a thorough research paper on the Communist system in Nicaragua. When our class engaged in a harkness discussion on our findings, I was fascinated by the varying expressions of Communist ideology in different countries. In the second semester, I explored the North Korea Nuclear Crisis and the Israel-Palestine Conflict by analyzing each side’s narratives. From watching a documentary accounting The Mass Games in North Korea, comparing a timeline of the nuclear crisis produced by North Korea and the U.S., to understanding the discrepancy of historical narratives in the book Side by Side, I had the opportunity to deliberately assess both sides’ reasoning in depth and draft potential compromises to mediate the conflict through my work on Model Diplomacy. It was through the analysis of merits to claims suggested by both sides that I realized the importance of having an “open mind” when it comes to learning history. Continue reading
—-Project Initiation and Goal
While thinking about Traditional Chinese Medicine or Eastern medicine in general, many people would picture the acupuncture needles sticking out on the skin surface and a room with mysterious smell of herbal medicine. Many would even argue that Eastern medicine has no basis in science, and the proclaimed effects of herbal medicine or acupuncture are merely placebo effects. While thinking about Eastern medicine, however, many would perhaps picture an operating room occupied by high-tech equipments and surrounded by doctors holding scalpels. Continue reading
It’s the end of the semester, and I have 47 pages of polished writing. What have I shown?
I believe I’ve given an example of a mutually positive relationship between the U.S. government and a mainstream print media outlet, due to which the public reaction to a foreign policy event was to some degree determined by the coverage given by the print media outlet. I have demonstrated the connection between the foreign policy aims of American foreign policy leaders during and after the Six-Days’ War and those advocated and legitimized by the print coverage of the War by the New York Times. Further, I have explicated the symbiotic relationship between sources of information thought to be authoritative and credible, and the disseminators of that information, in order to substantiate the logical basis for that relationship in this specific instance of foreign policy. Continue reading
As I am finishing up my book, I am beginning to weave together all of the different and corresponding parts of the two societies of Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece. I have been trying to address this in my closing chapter, but this chapter has been the most challenging part of the book to write. I am having trouble putting all this research to a close, and my first paragraph of my closing chapter reads as followed:
“The civilizations of Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece show how different women were treated in the Ancient World in these societies. Continue reading
Since I am writing my paper on the royal affinity under Richard II, I thought I would use this blog post to provide an overview of this body, based on the most comprehensive study available – Chris Given-Wilson’s The Royal Household and the King’s Affinity. In my previous blog posts on bastard feudalism (x x), I discussed the practice of retaining lower-ranking members of the gentry which emerged among the nobility in the 14th century. Continue reading
In the time since my last blog post on McFarlanian bastard feudalism, I have been able to get access to McFarlane’s seminal 1945 essay on the subject (a big thank you to the librarians). Additionally, I managed to finish P. R. Coss’s lengthy 1989 essay “Bastard Feudalism Revised”, in which Coss provides a thorough critique of McFarlane’s ideas and offers a new framework for understanding the bastard feudal system. Thus, I plan to use this blog post to discuss McFarlane’s ideas a bit more and present some criticisms that have been made of them. Continue reading
I am really starting to get into Ancient Greece, which was unexpected. I thought it would be more difficult than Ancient Egypt, but I am realizing how fascinating the Grecian world was. The challenge is that it is more difficult to discuss Greece, because it is comprised of islands and different types of political systems, not just one large kingdom like Ancient Egypt. My notes on Greece are extensive, and I am realizing there was a level of rape culture that was not prominent in Ancient Egypt. Grecian women were objects, not people, and viewed as such a source of evil that the names of women could not be spoken in public. Continue reading
When we think of medieval politics, we think of feudalism, the hierarchical system of obligations by which men of lower status are bound to serve men above them in the so-called “feudal pyramid” made up of peasants, knights, lords, and king. Feudal obligations were rendered by tenants in exchange for hereditary grants of land from the lord of the manor. Ultimately, the king owned all of the kingdom’s land and the highest class of the nobility were those who held their land directly from him.
Because no historical person or event can be accurately examined outside of its wider context, I thought it would be a good idea to use this blog post to provide some basic information regarding society during the reign of Richard II, with particular emphasis on the world of politics. At the time that Richard became king, England was shaped by two defining events in its recent history: the Black Death and the Hundred Years War. Continue reading