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"Touring the West Bank" - STANFORD INTELLECTUAL EXPERIENCE


livedreamfly3 3 / 30  
Dec 30, 2010   #1
Constructive criticism and feedback will be GREATLY appreciated.
*if you edit mine, i'll edit back. :)

An idea or experience, you have had that you find intellectually engaging.
Last summer, I had the amazing opportunity to visit Israel with my high school friends, AP Comparative Politics teacher, and my United States History teacher. Many months prior to the trip, I did all I could do to know about Israel from every aspect: I bought multiple guide books, practiced my Hebrew and Arabic, and read the Lemon Tree, a novel impartially written captured the Arab and Jew perspective in the heart of the Middle East. I was prepared to gain an intellectually stimulating experience of a lifetime.

This occurred when our group was able to tour the West Bank. Passports in hand, one by one, we stepped towards the Foreigner booth. I flashed my United States passport and found myself staring at a Palestinian woman in traditional clothes with a newborn strapped to her back. Beads of sweat dripped down her face; her dark eyes flashed a look of hatred that said, "You Americans." After the tour of the West Bank, we returned to our cool air-conditioned bus and sat down on soft clothed seats. Peering through a tainted window to the Palestinians on the other side, I could not forget the woman's dejected and exhausted eyes. She was telling me to do something, almost pleading, underneath her abhorrence for me as an American. She has affected me to make every decision as a World citizen rather than an American. I recognize that my opportunities given to me as an American are unattainable privileges for others, but I have also come to realize the need to seize these opportunities and advocate for those who do not have the rights or the means to do so themselves.
Anonymoussenior 17 / 133  
Dec 30, 2010   #2
Maybe begin the second paragraph saying
This anticipated experience was made a reality
or this experience became a reality when our group...

I just think it needs some sort of transition. Anyways, great essay otherwise.
jz7 6 / 21  
Dec 30, 2010   #3
I agree with Kelsey, that was one point that struck out to me when I was reading.

A question aroused when I was reading:

I did all I could do to know about Israel from every aspect: I bought multiple guide books, practiced my Hebrew and Arabic, and read the Lemon Tree, a novel impartially written captured the Arab and Jew perspective in the heart of the Middle East. I was prepared to gain an intellectually stimulating experience of a lifetime.

the "preparedness" mentioned here seems to be talking more about the physical and geological aspects of Israel rather than the humanitarian, as mentioned by the women.

If that is the case, maybe you should mention that you were in no way prepared for this sort of stimulation?

btw, use "arabic" and "jewish",not the informal way as it may be offensive.

just a suggestion, otherwise very solid essay, good job!! look at common app please?
chocana 6 / 18  
Dec 30, 2010   #4
Very solid essay! From what I see, there's no grammatical error. But I think this sentence, "I was prepared to gain an intellectually stimulating experience of a lifetime" sounds a little corny. But other wise, very strong! I wouldn't change a thing.
ekim226 5 / 29  
Dec 30, 2010   #5
Great writing! :)

"...read the Lemon Tree,<-- should be italicized? [a novel impartially written captured] i find these words a little awkward the Arab and Jew perspective in the heart of the Middle East."

"I was prepared to gain an intellectually stimulating experience of a lifetime." <-- this sentence is a little awkward for me.
"This occurred when..." Could you specific 'this'? :)
I noticed you say "flash" twice. It's a very striking word so I'd stick with using it once.
"on soft, clothed seats"

And this is optional, but do you have specific ideas on how you'd like to advocate those rights, etc.? Maybe you could quickly add something about that to make it more "tangible"/"visible" if you know what I mean.

I enjoy reading your writing :)

I also uploaded my Brown supplement today and I'd love to hear any advice you have about it. Thanks for helping me with UPenn!
MoonCl0ud 3 / 9  
Dec 30, 2010   #6
Great response to the question! You answered the prompt thoroughly. I do agree that you need a smoother transition between your first and second paragraphs. The first sentence of your second paragraph could be rearranged so that you can introduce the idea of humanitarianism. That idea had popped out of nowhere when I got to it. Other than that, I think everything else is great.
esin 2 / 7  
Dec 30, 2010   #7
United States History American History

Arab and Jew perspective Arabic and Jewish perspectives


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