Sneeha Bose is a combined BA/MA student in the American Studies department at George Washington University, and is currently completing the MA portion of the program as of Fall ‘21. Over the past year, she has been part of the staff of the GWU Covid Archive Project as an oral historian, documenting the experiences of the GW community during the pandemic through interviews with students, alumni, faculty, and staff. Her poetry has also been published in Newtown Literary. Her research interests include science and culture, publics and placemaking, and affect theory.
Where did you go for undergrad and what did you study there?
I was right here at GW, and I majored in American Studies and minored in Creative Writing and History.
Why did you choose GW?
I chose GW for undergrad because of its strong American Studies program and passionate faculty, all at the heart of Washington D.C. Over the past few years, I got to learn from some amazing people and see for myself the intellectual and supportive network within the department. I’ve had some incredible opportunities, and I wanted to keep cultivating my academic growth by pursuing a Master’s here, too.
If you were tasked with introducing yourself to a person only by recommending to them one film, which would you choose?
Knives Out, without a doubt.
What or who inspired your interest in American Studies?
I spent my senior year of high school working on an independent study researching Operation Paperclip, a covert CIA operation that recruited former Nazi scientists during the Cold War. I was fascinated by how the Cold War rhetoric of American moral superiority challenged self-interest and how the public reconciled the two. While I had been largely examining government documents, at one point, I also ended up watching Dr. Strangelove. Without realizing at the time, I was doing the interdisciplinary work that American Studies requires, applying different approaches to examine cultural values and products. American Studies continued to appeal to me, and became not only a combination of methodologies, but a methodology of its own. In undergrad, I eventually returned to the topic of Operation Paperclip, expanding my previous research for my senior thesis. Running parallel was the development of my understanding of American Studies as I was exposed to more subjects and methods, and I saw that American Studies allows for perspectives and creative practices in scholarship unlike any other discipline. It has always been the field that has allowed me to explore my research interests most extensively and wholeheartedly.