Thursday, April 9, 2015

URSP Student Alzahraa Mirza Conducts an Analytical Study of the Modern Salafi Brotherhood’s Radical Movements in Saudi Arabia and its Terrorism Implications

Developing curiosity about specific topics and subjects can lead to the start of a journey. Asking a question that have not been answered or to start developing a more detailed question about something that have been already been answered but needs more clarification is a journey that the researcher learns a lot throughout it. My research questions evolve around the political system and radical Salafism in Saudi Arabia. The title of my project is “I was so surprised to know that I got the opportunity to work under the guidance of Dr. Eric Shiraev, a person who is very knowledgeable and professional at the field on comparative politics. He helped me to improve my analysis skills, which helped me a lot to develop an analytical argument to try supporting the ideas I had about the rise of terrorist groups in Saudi Arabia. I began questioning those topics when I was back home, in Saudi Arabia and I wanted to answer those questions academically so I can expose it to other Saudi nationals who might have the same questions by developing an argument and analyzing facts in order to prove a specific thesis that I have developed from those questions. This project so far was the most beneficial opportunity that I had during my college career. It gave me the chance to be exposed to a huge amount of for my research.

I am planning to continue studying about topics of comparative politics and international relations in order to go back and serve for my country, Saudi Arabia. This research gave me a different insight that would help me to understand the way the system is built on in my country, which eventually would help me when I am working there. On weekly bases, I try to spend an hour and a half to two hours to work on my research; I sometimes spend four when I get into very complicated arguments and discussions. I meet with my professor often the times, but I use online communications to update him on my work all the time. I found out this week that of the names that I am looking for in my research is translated from Arabic into a different name in English, which was interesting to discover how they translated it into English and which methods they used to do that.