American Politics Placement Candidates
Click the candidate's name to view his or her information.
Patrick Schoettmer is a Ph.D. candidate in Political Science at the University of Notre Dame, where he specializes in American politics. His research focuses on the political behavior of religious groups, examining the way in which external perceptions and social networks influence the willingness of religious communities to engage in civil society and the political process. Patrick has forthcoming research on American Buddhist behavior and won several grants and awards in support of his dissertation research on American Muslim civic and political participation. He anticipates defending his dissertation in the spring of 2013.
Patrick earned a dual B.A. in Political Science and in Philosophy in 2000 from Indiana University in Bloomington. He subsequently earned a M.A. in Near Eastern Languages and Culture from IU, passing comprehensive exams in the areas of comparative politics, Islamic history, and Arabic. Patrick was also recognized for his outreach work to the community with the M. Amin Zaki Service Award. He earned his M.A. in Political Science in 2011, passing comprehensive exams in American politics and international relations.
Crescent, Cross, and Culture: How Politics Shapes our Racial and Religious Identities
Assoc. Prof. David Campbell (Chair)
Prof. Dianne Pinderhughes
Prof. Geoffrey Layman
Assoc. Prof. Ricardo Ramírez
Patrick's dissertation focuses on the formation of the modern political identity of American Muslims. The central argument of the dissertation is that the nature of the contemporary political discourse in the US promotes an Islamization of Muslim political identities, which impacts Muslim political preferences and their degree of civic engagement. By exploring the transformation of the salience of Islam to the political discussion in the US following the September 11th attacks, how the salience of Islam to the political debate has impacted Muslim elites, and how these elite attitudes have shaped Muslim opinion, the dissertation demonstrates how political discourse shapes what we understand about the dividing lines of religion and race.
The dissertation employs an original survey fielded in cooperation with a Muslim political action group to uncover the particular importance of homogeneity and activity within the mosque to defining the extent and nature of Muslim political engagement in the US. The project also draws upon field work conducted in American mosques to help illuminate the important role community and religious leaders play in shaping the attitudes of minority groups who perceive themselves as being threatened by the majority.