The essay has a long progeny and a most rich history, some trace it back to the Ziusudra of Sumer (2900BC), a history much longer than the formal institutionalisation of intellectual life. The essay is enjoying a period of revival, ironic given that much of discourse these days is expressed in byte sized characters. The great thinkers of history have indulged in the art and craft of essay writing, and throughout the ages whenever scholars have been compelled to put blot to paper they have adopted the essay format to express their musings.
The essay format is applied often, and attached significant weight of marks, in higher education because a university education, especially at the graduate level, involves independent theory oriented learning.
As graduate students you too have joined the exulted community of scholars, and so you too shall have opportunity to express yourself in essay form. The essay enables you to focus your thinking, and it provides a format of expression which compels you to develop and apply the full range of cognitive skills crucial to a higher education such as critical thinking, research, analysis, interpretation, mastery of a body of
point often neglected. Page 2
You might notice two other tabs at the Assessment module, one on the logical structure of an
? argumentative essay and the other on 4 keys to writing in the humanities. Both resources are highly useful. You should note that the first focuses on the logical structure of an argumentative essay, not necessarily the paragraph-by-paragraph structure as it appears on the page. ___________________
are tasked with writing a Research Essay of 2500 words (plus or minus 10%) in response to set provocations or questions. That is to say, you must choose 1 question from a list of 10 questions to answer.
The 10 questions from which you choose 1 are:
1) Analyze and discuss the concept of “structural violence” as a tool for understanding international conflict.
2) Is relative deprivation theory (as an explanation of international conflict) preferred to rising expectations theory?
3) Do you agree with the view that conflicts have always an instrumental dimension? Elaborate with a case study drawn from the Armed Conflict Survey 2020 found in the Reading List.
4) What are the main challenges for peacekeeping operations? How can they become more effective?
5) Is the mediation of contemporary international conflicts by actors other that states effective?
6) “Human destiny resides in biology rather than choice”. Discuss with respect to international conflict.
7) Is the decision to go to war a rational decision? Elaborate with a case study drawn from the Armed Conflict Survey 2020 found in the Reading List.
8) What is the role of justice (social justice and/or gender) in international conflict resolution?