The detailed assignment for the Long Essay is now available. It is a deceptively simple-looking assignment, but what I’m really asking you to do is think carefully about how the region you pick has been affected by, and played a role in, world history over the last five hundred years. But many people, over the years, have underestimated what I was looking for, and just given me an encyclopedia-style chronological, and boring, century-by-century, dynasty-by-dynasty description. That’s not the point. It’s an interesting project, and I often learn a great deal from reading student essays about places I’ve not studied in depth.