Archive - December 10, 2010

1
The Peace Corps Library – Part II
2
Talking with Larry Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77) about his Peace Corps Chronology
3
The Peace Corps as a Plot Gimmick

The Peace Corps Library – Part II

  “How did we get here and where do we want to go?” Surely, my site buddies and I were not the only PCVs to ponder that question. It could even serve as one theme for the 50th Anniversary. However, in the context of the Peace Corps administrative history of information services, it sounds like the message  Peace Corps Director Loret Ruppe gave to her staff after Peace Corps gained its independence from ACTION in 1982. The Peace Corps Library had been providing support services to domestic operations and now had to refocus on Peace Corps.  What would be the best way to support overseas staff as well as Washington Headquarters and avoid duplication and competition between ICE and the Library?  Rupert ordered a study to answer precisely that question. The study included a review of previous studies, documents and memos all of which had been carefully archived in the . . .

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Talking with Larry Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77) about his Peace Corps Chronology

Next week on this site we’ll be publishing a review of Lawrence Lihosit’s new book, Peace Corps Chronology: 1961–2010. The review is by P. David Searles (CD Philippines 197174; PC/W 1974-76) who writes of Lihosit’s book: “A lot can happen in fifty years, as demonstrated by Lawrence F. Lihosit’s superb book: Peace Corps Chronology, 1961-2010. Lihosit has carefully sifted through an immense cache of Peace Corps data from a wide variety of sources, some of which are familiar and some of which were previously unknown, at least to me. In the book he gives a detailed account of the critical happenings – year by year, decade by decade – from 1961 to the present.” In anticipation of David’s review, I emailed Larry a few questions about why he undertook the task of doing all of this research on the agency. Here’s what he had to say. What is Peace Corps . . .

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The Peace Corps as a Plot Gimmick

I read where Brooke White, an “American Idol” Season 7 finalist, will star in Change of Plans, a TV movie presented by Fox. The 27-year-old singer-turned-actress will play a woman who becomes the legal guardian of four children after her best friend dies while serving in the Peace Corps.  (Wait, a PCV with four kids?) This is just the latest in a series of movies (and books) that uses the Peace Corps as a plot gimmick. The most famous one, and one of the first, was the very lowbrow movie Volunteers starring  Tom Hanks years before Hanks was an Oscar-winning megacelebrity.  In this silly movie, Hanks meets and stars with Rita Wilson who Tom later married. Volunteers is set in 1962–back when the Peace Corps was all the rage–and Hanks, speaking with an unfortunate accent meant to represent aristocratic wealth, plays a compulsive gambler, recently graduated from Yale, whose father suddenly refuses to pay his debts. To escape . . .

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