DCguy Posted December 24, 2013 Share Posted December 24, 2013 Hello all. This is a new draft of my SOP. please critique it, offer any suggestions or tips. keep in mind that this is a very rough draft. I am not so concerned with word choice or grammar as much as content. I looks forward to your ideas. Thank you I write to apply to BLANK University's PhD. program in history. I became interested in Twentieth Century American political history and ideology in a seminar course at Salisbury University (SU). I was drawn to questions of the changing nature of the presidency, in particular I enjoy investigating the legacy that Franklin Roosevelt left on the office. While I am attracted to this topic, I should also stress that I am equally interested in exploring issues connecting politics and the changing nature of the office of the president to the American Civil Rights Movement on a national and a local level. Specifically, I would like to investigate the relationships between local and national leaders and how these relationships influenced policy. My decision to apply to BLANK is based on the belief that your program provides the optimum setting for me to refine my interests, my skills as a historian, and to prepare for a career of independent research and teaching at the post-secondary level. During my career at SU, I had a number of academic and research experiences that strengthened my desire to pursue a career in academic history. Perhaps the earliest and most formative experience was my pro-seminar research paper, entitled "A Non-Christian Republic: Thomas Jefferson on the Private Role of Religion in the New Republic," which, after refining, I was able to present at a conference and publish. In consultation with my undergraduate advisor, I investigated the idea of whether or not the United States was founded as a religious nation by comparing the views held by leading scholars on the topic. Specifically, I examined Thomas Jefferson's affirmation that Christianity was "a religion of all others most friendly to liberty, science, and the freest expansion of the human mind," but he was still determined to live by the idea that religion was a private matter. By considering the opposing views of historians, my study provided me with a model for my future research projects. I extended this comparative model that I used for all of my undergraduate research projects to my first historiographical essay as a Master of Arts candidate, entitled "Africans in the New World: A Diaspora or Creolization?" In this essay, I investigated the available literature on the topic to answer the question of whether or not a true Diaspora took place when Africans were brought to the Americas as slaves, or if these displaced African slaves created a Creole culture. I examined this question with a more interdisciplinary approach than I ever did as an undergraduate. I incorporated history with anthropological and sociological studies, always keeping the comparative model in mind. I seek admission to BLANK University's department of history because my interests in Twentieth Century American history would be matched by the department's strengths. I am particularly enthusiastic about working with Professor BLANK on Twentieth Century political topics from the national to the local level and with Professor BLANK on topics in high politics and political ideology. I understand BLANK University also has political scientists with interests that overlap my own I feel prepared to begin the life of an academic historian for a number of reasons. First, I have spent a year off as a student in which time, I am teaching my first world civilization courses. It can be daunting to teach an introductory level survey course to a group of students with little interest in the topic. I found that keeping classroom lectures on a conversational level with conviction and good humor, even a class of non-majors can become interested in ancient Persian history, for example. I am fortunate in that the Chair of the history department allowed me to develop my courses independently, giving me the opportunity to develop my own curricula drawing from my time as a student and my own research and reading. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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