Archive - April 16, 2010

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RPCVs Bissell & Meyer Win Guggenheims
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Nigeria on My Mind. Again.

RPCVs Bissell & Meyer Win Guggenheims

The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation announced today that in its eighty-sixth annual competition for the United States and Canada the Foundation has awarded 180 Fellowships to artists, scientists, and scholars. Peace Corps Writers Tom Bissell and Mike Meyer have both been awarded Guggenheims for 2010.  They were selected from a group of some 3,000 applicants. Tom Bissell (Uzbekistan 1996-97)  is now an  Assistant Professor of English, Portland State University and will use his Guggenheim grant to research ” The evolution of the common perception of the Twelve Apostles.” Michael Meyer (China 1995-97),  from Golden Valley, Minnesota, is writing a book on ” Contemporary Manchuria and the Han Chinese farmers.” Guggenheim Fellowships grants are given for a minimum of six months and a maximum of twelve months. The average amount of grant money is approximately $50,000.  No special conditions are attached to the grants, and Fellows may spend their grant funds in any manner they deem . . .

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Nigeria on My Mind. Again.

Published author John Sherman (Nigeria/Biafra 1966–67; Malawi 1967–68; staff: PC/Washington 1970–71, 1975–77; PC/Ghana 1971–73) has a multi-faceted publishing company in Indiana that offers editorial services, and assists others publish and market their books. He also does pro bono work for charitable organizations, and keeps close attention on Africa, particularly Nigeria where he once was a PCV. Recently he returned to his first Peace Corps country and was kind enough to send me this “going home” account for our site. • IT’S ALWAYS A CHALLENGE to write about Nigeria. So much to say. Lamenting. Complaining. Defending. Speaking with sadness, rage, and excitement, often in the same conversation, hell, in the same sentence, about that wild, crazy, wonderful country. Nigeria and I have been in this dysfunctional, on-again/off-again relationship ever since I was a college senior. At times, I’ve tried to push it away, but failed, leaving it an integral part of . . .

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