Tuesday, 7 August 2012

The 'great leap' is a slow crawl

If you've looked at this blog before, you'll notice a couple of changes - notably the title and indeed the web address. It's pretty clear to me that my research is tied into the 1950s not the '60s and therefore to call this occasional musing 'race to the moon' is rather disingenuous. This blog charts my part-time, mid-career PhD research project reassessing one aspect of Eisenhower's presidency that has so far been largely overlooked: his contribution to US space policy as rockets and satellites first broke out of the earth's atmosphere.

I'm slowly getting my thoughts together around Eisenhower's contribution to US outer space policy - and it strikes me more and more that had the US followed the Eisenhower (Killian/Kistiakwsky/Glennan et al) plan, there'd be more than a six wheel rover scooting round on Mars right now.

Indeed, my current work is looking at the impact of a dead dog - not quite the dead cat bounce, but Laika's flight on Sputnik 2 had a distinct impact on the western world's psyche - and it's not one that has been sufficiently explored in the past. Whether I'll hit my target of a 10,000 word chapter section by the end of September is moot - though it would also go a long way towards my next goal of another academic journal article so is well worth the push. Unfortunately, having to earn a living and the distraction of three children off on summer holidays is rather eating into my research time. After a couple of weeks away, I've yet to get back into a disciplined routine, but need to do so quickly.

One tiny step is to refocus this blog. If nothing else, it gets me thinking and writing about my subject again.