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Ever wondered where to start? Blog Writing 101 and the SOAS History Blog

By Haritha Balasubramaniyan, BA Global Liberal Arts

What do menopausal matriarchs in West Africa, clay tablets in nineteenth century Baghdad and Sudanese music have in common?  Of course they have all been topics of articles in the SOAS History Blog! 

‘… the SOAS History Blog has been creating new ways for resident history enthusiasts to channel their interests into producing creative articles and podcast episodes on various topics.’

With the hustle and bustle of student activity returning to campus this year, academic outreach has resumed its rightful place in the SOAS mind. In line with this, the SOAS History Blog has been creating new ways for resident history enthusiasts to channel their interests by producing creative articles and podcast episodes on various topics. Launched in May 2021, the blog has been generating articles from undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral students, as well as members of staff and alumni. 

Their latest event, ‘Blog Writing 101,’ held on 18 November, established their key objectives – to facilitate a platform for members within the SOAS community to publish their history-related writings. Having run entirely online last year, this year’s event was hosted in a hybrid format – perhaps a new normal. Ellan Lincoln-Hyde, Editor and Administrator for the Blog, hosted the event and led the participants through a discussion of a series of topics related to blogging. Starting with the primary question of what a blog looks like and what one could gain from creating a sustained habit of blogging. Lincoln-Hyde provided interesting insights and anecdotes from their own extensive experience with the medium. Tariq Mir, a doctoral researcher at SOAS, joined Lincoln-Hyde and Dr. Andrea Janku in discussing their experience with contributing to the Blog and the editing experience. Indeed, Janku was able to provide her insights as both a core member of the Blog Team who has spearheaded the project, as well as a contributor to the blog. Tariq Mir’s piece titled ‘The Tigris Still Runs Black with Ink: Untangling the Myths Surrounding the Development of Islamic Thought’ was published last May. He has also been an enthusiastic supporter of other events run by the SOAS History Blog team. His article and community profile are both available on the blog website. 

Lincoln-Hyde’s presentation also included a technical insight into various Blogging platforms and a call for writers who would be interested in contributing. Currently, the SOAS History Blog is accepting contributions from all SOAS students, staff members, and alumni. To get in touch, simply email them at [email protected]. The Blog can also be reached on Instagram (@soashistoryblog), Twitter and Soundcloud.

If you’re interested in writing for the Blog and meeting like-minded history enthusiasts, come join the Blog team and writers at their next event, ‘What’s Up Doc?’ on 16 of December. Inspired by previous SOAS Union events of similar names, the event is structured to help our undergraduate and masters students connect with ‘history work’ being done at SOAS by their fellow students. This one hour, panel-style discussion will feature three current PhD students. They will briefly introduce their topics, their motivations and their personal journeys before and during the PhD process. Come see real, live (and very friendly) PhD students and ask all those burning questions you have always wanted to know! 

This is a popular event, so remember to keep an eye out for zoom details and registration via the SOAS History Blog website and social media channels!

Caption: SOAS History Blog Writing 101 poster, (credit: SOAS History Blog)

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