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PHD in Language, Literacy, and Culture, Research Paper Example

Pages: 2

Words: 490

Research Paper

If my studies in language, gender, culture, and social issues have revealed anything to me, it is that an interdisciplinary approach is not helpful in establishing research goals; it is essential.  My deep and consistent interest in social concerns, with an emphasis on gender and women’s studies, has made the evident to me.  In plain terms, any culture is an inherently multifaceted construct, and one that evolves as the varying elements within it interact.  Consequently, as I am committed to focusing on gender issues, I am drawn to the Language, Literacy, and Culture program at UMBC because it will provide the expansive, cultural foundation necessary to do justice to my study.

My ambition, in fact, is to investigate more fully how perceptions of women in cultures actually go to generating ideologies and behaviors relevant to the totality of the cultures.  It intrigues me, for instance, that social justice is so potently linked to gender definitions, and is to a large extent constructed according to those definitions.  This in turns links to language as expressing and shaping gender identity.  Regarding the issue of justice, my education in international law and human rights protection has encouraged me to pursue this line of inquiry; these are matters going to human interests of the most critical kind, yet the essential definition of “human” is inextricably connected to how women are perceived, and consequently to how women perpetuate or refute those perceptions.  This is in turn related to the specific study in women’s rights I have made, particularly in terms of maternity issues and child protection.  In my estimation, and even as incalculable amounts of research are devoted to gender issues, there remains a needed examination as to the actual force of gender in shaping cultures at their most fundamental – and functional – levels.  This is the field which I seek to explore and, as is obvious, an interdisciplinary approach is the only rational avenue.

To that end, I see the LLC program as ideal.  It comprehends this vital interdependence of elements, and seems to encourage the type of research I seek to pursue.  A culture is no randomized entity, but an organic, complex, and shifting presence.  The exponential quality of the processes within it cannot, I think, be overstated, and I believe as well that my research will expand, or shift in direction, as new meanings are revealed.  As diverse as my learning has been in the fields of human rights, justice, and culture, I believe I require a stronger grounding in the impact of language.  This is to my mind among the most influential instruments of culture, and I am eager to explore how its evolutions shape gender roles, which in turn generates the systems, institutions, and processes comprising a culture.  The LLC at UMBC will, I am confident, provide me with this, as well as with a comprehensive array of studies necessary to move my research into a more direct line of inquiry.

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