International Politics Research Paper

I’m having trouble picking a topic but the prompt is below. Please help with topic paper questions.

Now, about your research:

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I. Your paper must be based on a topic that can significantly affect how your audience/readers think about the issue you will write about.  That means, for instance, for every topic, you must narrow your paper to a specific aspect of the topic.  For instance, I am currently working on leadership in authoritarian states. Of course, I cannot write about every aspect of leadership nor about all authoritarian leaders.  My focus is on how and why authoritarian leaders stay so long in power.  My focus and question is on Why President Biya of Cameroon has been able to remain in power for 37 years and just won elections again in 2018.  How will I answer the question?  I am reading a lot from political scientists who have written theoretical explanations about how leaders stay in power in general and also those who have written specifically about Cameroon.  The data I am examining is a survey by Afrobarometer, a research organization, that asked Cameroonians about how they think about their leader.  That should give me ideas on how to analyze and discuss the issues.  I  am reading authoritative news sources and everything I can find from other sources such as diplomatic cables that have been declassified.

The point I am making by this example is that you have to have a general topic, focus on a specific aspect of that topic , ask a substantive question about it, and know exactly where to find answers to your research question.

2.  For everything you write for this course or for any you must have an AUDIENCE/READER in mind.  Without an audience in mind, you cannot know who to address.  Your paper could be meant for the general readership such as people who read newspapers, or it could be for students of International Politics, or better still it could be for a specific journal that publishes issues in International Politics for political scientists.  Do not write for your Instructor.  He is an audience of one who is paid to read your paper anyway.  Write as if you reader had to pay you to access your writing.  Ask yourself, will someone pay to read what I have written?

Let me suggest that your paper should be for students of International Politics in the United States of America just like you who have to buy access to a journal to read your work.

Why this most important focus on readers or audience?

All writing we do should have some value for the reader/audience if they are going to invest time and money to read you.  Therefore, you should be able to answer the question: How has my writing affected, or will change how my audience/reader thinks about the issue I wrote about.  Is my work of value for them? For, if this is not clear to you, it cannot be clear to your reader.

I strongly suggest that you think this way about all writing you do.  WRITE SOMETHING OF VALUE TO THE READER THAT CAN CHANGE HOW THEY THINK ABOUT AN ISSUE.  

In my case, my reader/audience are students and writers on Cameroon politics.  Will my they think differently about the durability of the Biya regime in Cameroon?  I will argue that to understand why the Biya lasted so long, they must think about the strategic sharing of national wealth and strategic appointments to positions of power that seeks to balance diverse ethnic, religious and other aspects of the Cameroonian society. I hope they go away with a new understanding about survival strategies of the Biya government in Cameroon.

For you then, consider you topics: Will your reader think differently about why the US left the Paris Accord on Climate change? Will your reader change their mind about the effects of 9/11 on US foreign policies since? etc, etc.

3.  Your paper should be concise, well-structured and written about 5 pages excluding references.  It should formatted and referenced in the APA guide.  You may wish to download a copy of the APA and have it handy.  If I do not have a copy in hand, I cannot do it well!

Your introduction, in introducing the topic and the specific focus, it should contain the theme of main argument of the paper.

The rest of the paper, in sections of paragraphs, should examine and analysis the various elements of your argument.  Draw evidence and support from your sources: journal articles, books, data, authoritative news sources from GALILEO .

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