Politics, Philosophy and Economics Personal Statement Example

Born to Nepali-Indian parents and now a British citizen, I have embraced cultures from the East and West. Ergo, I feel compelled to understand how there are such vast differences in countries and why we still have such inequalities despite centuries of research, evidence, and theory. To explore this, I read the book "How Rich Countries Got Rich and Why Poor Countries Stay Poor" by Erik Reinert, as the Indian and Nepali economies are so fascinating to me, not just because of my heritage but because of the contrast between the rapid increase in wealth and absolute poverty.

I learnt that "poor" countries are essentially robbed and exploited; - we have seen this recently in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Local and external groups have become more incentivised to get involved in the Congolese conflict - which goes against Hobbes' theory as it demonstrates collective irrationality.

It's interesting how less developed countries are paid only for the essential natural resources in their control and do not capitalise on the wealth of conversion. This made me understand that the issue with globalisation and free trade is that it exploits wealth from countries. Jonathon Wolff's "An Introduction to Political Philosophy" has introduced me to various central topics of political philosophy and two distinguished figures: Hobbes and John Rawls.

It was fascinating to see the difference in thought from political philosophers to what could be described as the false assurances of politicians. Hobbes believed an individually rational species would perform better than a collectively rational one. However, encouraging individual rationality could create problems as it could lead to collective irrationality, where people see other people as almost predators. I understood this from reading about the price inflation in Cambodia: due to being politically unstable, people started to panic and stock up on food, leading to scarcity and, therefore, price increases. People had made the rational decision to fend for themselves and their families, creating more fear and instability. This event contradicts Hobbes' theory of wanting to shift from collective to individual rationality, as in this case, fearing that something terrible would happen led to collective actions that caused an event to materialise.

The further I educate myself on PPE, it intrigues me how they are at the heart of every significant event in our global society, particularly the Israeli ethnic cleansing of Palestine. Conflicts that appear to be purely religious or political can be highly nuanced under the lens of PPE. Negotiated solutions can be easily achieved for economic, socio-economic or political problems with divisible objectives. However, this gets skewed when religion is a factor in the equation - religion makes many things in politics indivisible. Jerusalem can easily be divided geographically, but religiously, the 'Dome of the Rock' can't be divided as both sides desire it within their religious orbit. This event has gotten many young people, including me, involved in international politics and affairs.

Once this discussion about the Israel-Palestine conflict began, I believe it created a desire to understand global politics, allowing for more mobilisation and strengthening our democracy. The Economic summer school with SOAS solidified my desire to study PPE; these few days focused on GDP and COVID-19, which fascinated me immensely, seeing the close-up effects of a historical event I had experienced. I enjoyed the intense environments the seminars created, challenging me to connect on my rich learnings when interacting in discussions, subsequently pushing me further academically. Through PPE, I look forward to deepening my knowledge on topics like these in university as they affect billions of people worldwide and our everyday livelihood. I aspire to continue bringing light on global events, particularly those our government dismisses as something to be taken advantage of.

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It’s definitely not the best but just wanted to share to help others!! if you’re using this as a guideline I’d say expand more, input more of your opinions, and add more info about yourself


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