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Politics and Sociology

Major political game-players like the USA or Britain pride themselves on their ability to
properly exercise democracy, yet their inherent inability to practise the principles that
promote social equality seems to undermine this claim. Whether you choose to acknowledge it or
not, society has inbuilt discrimination; the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy is an example of
this. Speculation into the role austerity played has called the government to answer difficult
questions. The public sector cuts throughout the area made the victims to feel as though they
were regarded as second-class citizens, their safety and wellbeing disregarded. A tweet aimed
at the current political climate stated 'I don't know how to explain to you that you should
care about other people.' In a time where Presidents are issuing travel bans against a whole
religion, refugees are dying on boats and people nearly four months on from the Grenfell
tragedy are still waiting to be re-housed, it projects a powerful overview of western governments
and societies. Understanding the breath and complexity of these societal injustice issues,
which happen both on the world stage and at an individualistic level, is what draws me to
study Politics and Sociology at university.

When selecting my A Levels, I chose subjects that I believed would enhance the skills needed
for this degree. Philosophy and Ethics introduced me to the idea that I should question
everything, deepen my understanding of language and it has shown me the importance of
interpretations. Government and Politics has not only improved my awareness and interest in
current affairs, but also helped me to form political opinions of my own. History has allowed
me to develop and widen my skills in essay writing, where I have learned to argue, analyse and
evaluate. I particularly enjoyed studying American Civil History where I examined the cyclical
nature of society's impact on government policy and vice versa. For example, the
constitutional amendments made following the Civil War were the government's attempt to try to
change societal attitudes, whereas the racial protests and movements of the late 20th century
highlighted society trying to change the law.

I had the unique opportunity in 2016 to shadow an MP around Parliament. This entailed reading
and discussing emails sent from constituents, attending debates and Prime Minister’s questions.
It granted me access to understand how politics works at a grass-root level, and gave me
insight into the running of government and opposition’s day-to-day activities. The experience
was both thoroughly enjoyable and rewarding. It did however highlight the role, or lack thereof, of women in politics. I am eager to examine the changing roles of women in society and
have made a start by reading Laura Bates' 'Everyday Sexism' which challenges the idea that
sexism no longer exists in our modern societies. I also frequently read publications such as
The Economist, and have taken a keen interest in legal cases, where I believe individuals have
been failed by both government and society. Take the controversial death of Eric Garner, an
African America man who was harassed and murdered by police: a homicide that saw no
indictments of any officers involved. This blatant racism seen both in the judiciary and
police force highlights the need for radical reform in societal attitudes and government
policy.

Throughout secondary school, I have entered in a variety of activities, ranging from
captaining the 1st Lacrosse team to Maths mentoring. Being trusted with these responsibilities
has improved my organisational ability, taught me how to delegate and improved my team and
communication skills.

I believe I am an ambitious and motivated student who can manage both academic pursuits and
extra-curricular responsibilities. My determination, combined with enthusiasm and fascination
for Politics and Sociology, lead me to believe I am ready to embrace the academic challenge of
university.

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Author's Comments

I received offers from
Uni of Edinburgh (politics and sociology)
Uni of Manchester (politics and sociology)
Uni of Bristol (politics and sociology)
Durham University (sociology)
Uni of York (political science)

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