Reframing and Reflection

The process of finalizing my research topic was rather difficult for me. Among tips for my presentation itself, I received comments on my topic, animal rights activism and labels, that made me revisit the decision to focus around that. The comments included it being too vague/abstract and not relevant enough to activism. Additionally, one of the main points of my research was exploring stereotypes and how they relate to labels and the success of animal rights activists, and I received feedback advising me to reconsider that point altogether. After hearing more feedback on my research proposal paper and getting similar comments about the lack of clarity in my topic, I decided to change it to have a clearer, more relevant focus. My infographic was based on this new topic, animal rights activism and factory farming, though my plan for it wasn’t completely solidified yet. I received feedback after this presentation that advised me to make it more specific rather than an overview of animal rights activism and factory farming. From that, I narrowed my topic to the role of the U.S. government and agribusiness in the effectiveness of animal rights activists, which finally seems specific enough to lead to a research question. Tentatively, I want to use my research to consider the question of whether the U.S. government and agribusiness are actively hindering progress for animal rights activists, and if so, how animal rights activists can respond. From what I’ve read so far, it seems that corporations and sectors of the government involved in agriculture are passing legislation and motivating consumer choices in ways that are too subtle for activists to easily address or reverse but still heavily influence the reason factory farms exist, meat consumption. Furthermore, many activists accuse those who are responsible for anti-whistleblower laws in agriculture, lawmakers and corporations with lobbying money, as acting to silence the opposition, which would be a direct attempt to take power away from animal rights activists. Thus, my thesis will likely take the position that the U.S. government and agribusiness are using their power to tip the scale in favor of corporate economic prosperity at the expense of truth and the moral considerations brought forth by activists.

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