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Inquiry 2014 Reflection from Alicia Hain '14
04.08.14 |
Alicia Hain is a senior political science major from Lebanon, Pa. She reflects on her Inquiry 2014 presentation, "Black and White or Shades of Gray: Examining Religious Oppression'" in the following:

Through my studies at Lebanon Valley, a reoccurring topic that continued to intrigue me was the persecution and oppression of religious groups. My research focused on the role Christians have taken as the persecutor or persecutee chronologically and geographically. While investigating the role of Christians in terms of the persecutor and persecutee, the following questions were examined: to what extent is the persecution of Christians cyclical; to what extent are Christians persecuted in countries where Christians represent the minority of the population; and, have different events in history directed Christians to take the role of the persecutor or persecutee. Through the investigation of four distinct periods and 15 case studies, the results indicate the persecution of Christians is not cyclical, but the lines are blurred due to the time in history and geographic location; Christians are persecuted more in countries when representing the minority of the population than the majority; and, different events have directed Christians to take the role of the persecutor or persecutee.

As I studied the atrocities suffered by different religious groups, I began to realize how diverse the world is compared to the United States. Living in the United States, we as citizens are naïve and blinded by the acts of violence occurring every day. Unless the media covers these events, the citizenry of the United States would never know, especially not comprehend the severity of the violence. Recognizing that a change in a country’s dominant religion can bring either war or peace to the territory are just small insights gained through this research. My research made me appreciate my country, but has also convicted me to make a difference in the world.

To be selected to present at Lebanon Valley College’s Inquiry 2014 is an honor. This event allows students to present their work to their colleagues, professors, staff, parents, and community members where the work may otherwise go unnoticed. This event allows students to show creativity in their work and exemplify the knowledge Lebanon Valley has instilled in its students and faculty. Presenting at Inquiry the past two years has allowed me to develop confidence in answering questions about my projects and realize that my research is significant to my field of study in political science.

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