Phase 0: Getting Started: Topic Exploration and Selection
Microcampus is a journey of learning and self-exploration. Phase 0 marks the start of this journey. I will spend my 28 days in Xizhou in discovering how the Flying Tigers affected the people it was to protect. I chose this topic because World War II in Asia and the Pacific is a topic of high personal interest. Originally, I had a three topics to choose from. However, after thinking long and hard, I have chosen to research the topic of the Flying Tigers.
The topics I am especially interested in is the Flying Tigers and their lasting impact. I would also be interested in the impact of the government graffitis in Xizhou. However, if I need to choose another topic, I would choose case studies.
I am most interested in the Flying Tigers because I am a World War II enthusiast and I will be researching this topic. I choose to investigate this topic because the Flying Tigers changed the course of World War II. This topic is important to me because I would like to study and understand World War II and important events and people such as the Flying Tigers through the eyes of the men and women who have seen it play out in front of them. I plan to find out the presence of the Flying Tigers in the Xizhou community, including why they came, the local people's opinions of them and the ripple effect after they left and interview people that have seen or interacted with the Flying Tigers.
Although government graffitis and case studies are both topics that will make for interesting and authentic research experiences, I have a strong interest in the Flying Tigers and I have decided that this is the topic I will get the most out of. As I said earlier in this post, I am interested in learning about the Flying Tigers' history in Xizhou. The Flying Tigers were portrayed as the saviors of China in books and movies, however, I would like to find out if they are well-received by the people they helped. For government graffitis, I originally planned to research the impact it had on the people of Xizhou. Did they like it? How did it change their everyday lives? How did their opinions about it change as the years pass? As for the case study, I originally planned to find out what the residents of Xizhou face every day in life.
The suggestions from the projects on the same topic by Orion L. (Alumni-O) and Kelly W. (Alumni-H), are to step out of our comfort zones the second we hit the ground and to interact with locals as much as possible. It is also suggested to use the resources available in the Linden Centre and the talk to the people I can interview often. I should also start to interact with the people I would like to interview as soon as possible in order to build a strong relationship with them and they will be more willing to give me information on the topic I will be researching. Orion has also informed me via email that it is preferable to bring along a voice record of some kind so I can go back to the interview or chat whenever I wish to. It has also been strongly emphasized to be polite and courteous to all people, such as Mr. Zhao. The people that have been interviewed by people who have researched this topic before me are Mr. Zhao and Mrs. Zhao. A translation book in the Linden Centre also detailing the identification of friendly and enemy aircraft is also used in the research process.
Now, after I have settled on a single topic of strong personal interest, I will be continuing onto Phase 1 in order to further prepare for my research in Xizhou.