Table of Contents:
Laura McRoberts - The Personal and Political Implications of Machiavelli's The Prince
Laurel Martin - Determinants of Success in Reform Strategies
Ramya Bavikatte - The Tuthu Life: The Story and Profile of the Modern-Day Gikuyun Farmers
A Scholarly Journal of Political Research
"I therefore call any Republic a State ruled by laws, under whatever kind of administration there might be, because only then does the public interest govern, and is res publica a reality" (Rousseau, Of the Social Contract).
Without the help of some dedicated individuals, the Res Publica would not have come to fruition. A $750 grant from the National Chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha allowed the Department to finance the creation of this journal. Jamie Ingle, Geoff Goodman, Neal Vermillion, and Amy Stewart served on the editorial board. The faculty project advisors, James Simeone, Kathleen Montgomery, and Tari Renner provided invaluable time and advice putting the journal together. Anne Peterson served as the student editor-in-chief, and Patra Noonan contributed as layout editor. Bruce Clark created the ink drawing on the cover. Lastly, the Lambda Omicron chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha would like to thank all those who submitted articles for the journal. There were some hard choices to make, but we believe the results speak for themselves.
A note from the Editor - The Importance of Research
After countless hours of reading entries, copy editing, and proofreading, the first issue of Res Publica has just rolled hot off the presses. The first political science journal to honor the work of undergraduates at Illinois Wesleyan University, Res Publica is the product of students who are not afraid of hard work. The editing team as well as the students whose work is presented in the journal learned first hand that although conducting quality research and then compiling it in a journal is a time-consuming process, victory in the end is sweet.
The professors encourage students to publish their original work. "I like to see it," commented Dr. Robert Leh. "Submitting papers is a good indicator of a student's ability or interest to do graduate work." Dr. James Simeone noted that students who produce journals like Res Publica learn about perseverance and have the opportunity to see a project through to its final stages. Moreover, students whose submissions are chosen for entry in a journal "are forced to step back and take a broad look at their work." Dr. Simeone argued that students cannot fully analyze their findings until they take the time to refine their work and then present it publicly. Dr. Kathleen Montgomery concurred. "You cannot cut corners. You have to go through the entire research process. After choosing a topic, you must choose a research strategy, do the research, and make time to write rough drafts. The best papers students have given me are those that they have read to their peers. This gives students a chance to get input on their work."
Producing quality research as an undergraduate often helps students gain entry into law schools, graduate schools, or the job market. "The journal should bring prestige to out department and students," said Dr. Tari Renner. Professor Frank Boyd remarked that students' ability to conduct research in any field can help them to be successful in a future career. "It demonstrates that students have the ability to engage in original thinking and research on an issue."
Members of the political science department encourage more students to submit entries for next year's journal. "Students have to go out for themselves and conduct their own research in the real world," said Dr. Leh. So, for all those interested in submitting to the Res Publica, start your research now and don't be afraid to "just do it."