I am making available my fellowship and grant proposals after seeing the excellent example of Chris Beier’s webpage. I found her page helpful in demystifying the entire process and providing an example of one way to write a proposal, and I hope you find this page helpful as well. I only ask that you use these proposals fairly and ethically, and that if they are helpful to you, to please send me a note at lisa dot firstname.lastname@example.org.
My dissertation project was originally titled “Household spaces and everyday practices at Xaltocan under Aztec state formation.” Here is an abstract of the research project, as it was proposed to the National Science Foundation.
This dissertation project examines the social, political, and economic transition at the Postclassic Central Mexican site of Xaltocan when it was conquered and integrated into the Aztec empire. It will shed light on warfare, abandonment, and imperial formation and expansion, topics of perennial concern within anthropology. The research will evaluate ethnohistoric statements that, having been conquered after a long war, Xaltocan was abandoned by its native population and then resettled with Aztec tribute payers. This research will also explore the ways in which commoners (re)formed everyday life in this new context through changes in household spatial practices. Fieldwork will include horizontal excavations of two house mounds known to contain stratified domestic deposits dating to before and after incorporation into the Aztec empire. Careful excavation using the Harris Matrix System should reveal evidence of site destruction, rapid abandonment, and a hiatus in occupation, if ethnohistoric statements are accurate. The contextual analysis of architecture and artifact distributions, complemented by multi-element soil chemical analysis and microartifact analysis, will facilitate the reconstruction of the spatial patterning of daily practices before and after incorporation into the Aztec state. This project will make a theoretical contribution by 1) offering a long-term case study of commoner experiences of war and conquest, and 2) considering bottom-up processes and household decisions at Xaltocan, such as the decisions to flee or to rebuild, that contributed to the character of the Aztec empire.
Over the course of writing grant proposals and receiving comments from reviewers, my project naturally evolved. While I know the project continued to shift and develop as I implemented the project, the National Science Foundation proposal is the most clearly articulated, since it is the last version I wrote. I have listed these proposals in the order in which they were written.
My dissertation project was funded by a Young Explorers Grant from the National Geographic Society’s Committee for Research and Exploration. My proposals from the two-step process are available as PDFs: pre-application proposal and funded full application proposal.