Monday, February 6, 2012

Getting Back Into History

I can only take so much Science before I can't take not immersing myself in History again.  Don't get me wrong, I love teaching and I actually am having fun teaching Science.  However, History is what I am passionate about and after spending 5 years of my life studying it on a high level, it is a hard subject to just drop.  Unfortunately, it does not seem like I will be able to teach History for a while; unfortunate because I miss it, not for any other reason.  Therefore, I have decided to undertake my own research project to keep my research skills sharp and my appetite for History fulfilled.

This post then, is a kind of research proposal.  The last research paper I wrote was about the development of chivalry during the Middle Ages.  This research project is going to be a little different.  For some time now I have been fascinated with the relationship between religion and government.  In America, we have a separation of church and state, which leads us to assume that religious thought has no impact of government policy and vise versa.  However, recently President Obama has made a law that will make Catholic medical groups (hospitals, clinics, health care providers) provide insurance for abortions, contraception, and other controversial practices part of their health insurance plans, even though they do not believe those practices to be morally acceptable.  This is an interesting development because most people are more weary of the church affecting government; here we are seeing the opposite.  Elsewhere in the world, Islamic governments enforce laws that are in line with fundamental Muslim beliefs.

The relationship between religion and government is as old as religion and government themselves.  I would like to take a look at how the relationship developed over time and how they affected each other.  I do not yet know what my thesis will be, but I am hoping that one will make itself known to me as I start my research.  I plan on taking a look at ancient governments and religions (including those in the Old Testament), the power struggle between the Catholic Church and European monarchs during the Middle Ages, the separation of church and state in America, and the relationship between Islam and the Middle Eastern governments.

The purpose of this was to get some of my thoughts out, and I have done so.  I realize I am all over the map on some ideas, but I have just begun thinking about it.  Look for a more organized proposal in the upcoming days/weeks.

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