Archive - June 2020

1
PEACE CORPS VOLUNTEERS AND THE MAKING OF KOREAN STUDIES IN THE UNITED STATES
2
Ursula Bendix (Colombia) publishes LAND-HOME-MOUNTAIN VIEW
3
Review — THE LAST RHINO by Robert Gribbin (Kenya)
4
RPCV Opinion: “We are the problem.”
5
Review — FLAMENCO IN THE TIME OF MOONSHINE AND MOBSTERS by David Edmonds (Chile)
6
Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia) returns to Woldiya in 2019 — A Most Beautiful Day
7
Trump’s move against China for its Uighur oppression makes him look like a hypocrite
8
Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia) shows us “How To Remember Our Tour”
9
NPCA announces “A Moment to Lean In: Courageous Conversations on Racial Equity in International Service”
10
Review — HOUSE OF THE ANCIENTS & OTHER STORIES by Clifford Garstang (Korea)

PEACE CORPS VOLUNTEERS AND THE MAKING OF KOREAN STUDIES IN THE UNITED STATES

  From 1966 through 1981 the Peace Corps sent more than two thousand volunteers to South Korea, to teach English and provide healthcare. A small yet significant number of them returned to the United States and entered academia, forming the core of a second wave of Korean studies scholars. How did their experiences in an impoverished nation still recovering from war influence their intellectual orientation and choice of study — and Korean studies itself? In this volume, Peace Corps Volunteers and the Making of Korean Studies in the United States, former Volunteers who became scholars of the anthropology, history, and literature of Korea reflect on their experiences during the period of military dictatorship, on gender issues, and on how random assignments led to lifelong passion for the country. Two scholars who were not volunteers assess how Peace Corps service affected the development of Korean studies in the United States.   Co-editor . . .

Read More

Ursula Bendix (Colombia) publishes LAND-HOME-MOUNTAIN VIEW

  Ursula Bendix (Colombia 1967-69) was born in Germany in 1945 and immigrated with her family to Portland, Oregon, when she was ten. After receiving her undergraduate degree from Portland State University, she joined the Peace Corps as an educational television volunteer in Columbia, South America. At the end of her two-year volunteer service she returned to Portland, completed her master’s degree, and finished working on a secondary school teaching credential. She moved to Yreka, California, in 1976 teaching adult education and Spanish for the College of the Siskiyous many years. She also taught at a polytechnic high school in southern Chile in 2018 as part of the English Open Doors program sponsored by Chile’s Ministry of Education and the United Nations. She is owner/broker of Bendix Real Estate specializing in Yreka and much of Siskiyou County for twenty years. Bendix’s Land • Home • Mountain View is her first . . .

Read More

Review — THE LAST RHINO by Robert Gribbin (Kenya)

  The Last Rhino (novel) Robert E. Gribbin (Kenya 1968–70) iUniverse April 2020 218 pages $24.15 (paperback)   Reviewed by Sandy Seppala-Gyr  (Kenya 1977-79)  • Are there any white rhinoceros left in Africa? Who is poaching elephants, which are killed for their ivory to send to China? This book takes you to Central Africa where you’ll see what it takes to overcome strife in the name of conservation to protect wildlife and preserve cultures. Elephants and rhinos were furthest from retired big-game hunter Philippe’s mind as he relaxed on his rigged sailboat in St. Martinique. He’d run chartered tours for five years when his Aussie friend, Sheila, suggested he was bored and getting boring. Agreeing, he guessed he needed an ‘adrenaline rush’. Responding to an advert, he put behind his comfortable life and flew to London to interview with the Elephant Conservation Project for a position in the Democratic Republic . . .

Read More

RPCV Opinion: “We are the problem.”

  Tasha Prados is a RPCV, Peru (2011-2013).  She write from her experience in International Development and fighting for racial equality in the United States. The National Peace Corps Association held a conversation about Equity in International Development.  To see the video of that conversation, here is the link:https://www.peacecorpsconnect.org/cpages/home Here is the link to her opinion published by the NPCA   The following is the text of the Tasha Prados article. • We are the problem By Tasha Prados “A second-generation American, I grew up knowing how privileged I was simply by the sheer luck of having been born in the United States. Being multicultural and Latinx, I spent most of my formative years between two worlds, never quite fitting in either, eager to connect more deeply with my Latin American roots. I went to El Salvador with a nonprofit organization for the first time when I was 16 years old . . .

Read More

Review — FLAMENCO IN THE TIME OF MOONSHINE AND MOBSTERS by David Edmonds (Chile)

  Flamenco in the Time of Moonshine and Mobsters David C. Edmonds (Chile 1963–65) St. Petersburg Press December, 2019 375 pages $18.95 (paperback), $18.00 (Kindle) Review by: D.W. Jefferson (El Salvador 1974–76; Costa Rica 1976–77) • Are you looking for a fun read for this Summer of the Corona Virus Pandemic? Then the latest historical novel by David Edmonds may be for you. Modern day Flamenco dancer Amy Romano drives her Prius into a huge southern Florida sink hole and emerges in 1932. Like Alice going down the rabbit hole, Amy emerges in a whole different world. Except in her case it is the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa during the Great Depression, complete with moonshine, mobsters and G-men! Flamenco in the Time of Moonshine and Mobsters is 375 pages yet is a surprisingly quick read due to the short chapters, filled with action, 99 of them. I found myself . . .

Read More

Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia) returns to Woldiya in 2019 — A Most Beautiful Day

  In 2019, Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia 1967-69) went back to Ethiopia for the first time in 50 years. Former Ethiopia PCV Rick Stoner and his wife Elsa put Cindy and her group in touch with Cheru, an Ethiopian tour guide, who took them all over the country, including Woldia. Cheru, in the red hat here in the video, with Cindy, and her young friend Susan Kosmoski, not an RPCV, and Cindy’s partner, Dennis Schulz (in the red shirt), had a beautiful day in Cindy’s Peace Corps home. Join their visit on YOUTUBE p.s. The next round is on Cindy.

Read More

Trump’s move against China for its Uighur oppression makes him look like a hypocrite

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Steven Boyd Saum (Ukraine 1994–96) A high-security facility near what is believed to be a re-education camp where mostly Muslim ethnic minorities are detained in China’s Xinjiang region.   June 20, 2020, By Sébastien Roblin (China 2013-15) Even when President Donald Trump finally manages to do the right thing, it’s rarely for the right reasons. Such was the case Wednesday, when he signed a law that allows for sanctioning as human rights violators Chinese officials responsible for running camps imprisoning up to 1 million Muslim Uighurs in the Xinjiang Province of western China. Trump’s been so inconsistent on what should be a core tenet of American foreign policy — opposition to large-scale internment of a minority population — that there’s some truth to claims from Beijing that Trump’s move this week was a hypocritical one motivated by a desire to weaponize the issue against China amid high-stakes trade negotiations. He . . .

Read More

Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia) shows us “How To Remember Our Tour”

  After the Peace Corps,  Cindy Mosca (Ethiopia 1967-69) returned to teaching but eventually left teaching art and went into the field of ESL. She became the Director of the Bilingual Program in Cicero, Illinois. She has a son and a daughter who live in the Chicago area. She and her partner, Dennis live in Bloomington, Indiana. They both love to travel and you can find a record of their travels (including a return to Ethiopia) at ourbetter.blogspot.com/ Since retirement she has returned to painting. You can view samples at her web site. Cindy loves making videos for family and friends. She has transferred old slides for them into videos which can be saved to YouTube, a flash drive, a DVD or somewhere in the heavens via iCloud or Google.  

Read More

NPCA announces “A Moment to Lean In: Courageous Conversations on Racial Equity in International Service”

  Please read the following announcement from the NPCA website about this program.  At the end of the announcement there is a link to register. • Now is the time for some tough questions. How do we confront systemic racism as it shapes the work we do — here and around the world? And how do we ensure that our community lives out principles of equity and justice?As part of our commitment to convening‌ ‌conversations‌ ‌around‌ ‌service and‌ ‌opportunity, National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) is joining the Building Bridges Coalition and the International Volunteer Programs Association to host a dialogue about racial equity in international service. Speakers will share their experiences as Black volunteers and staff on service programs, and as organizational leaders with longstanding commitments to institutional and systemic change. Join us for this important dialogue. In the weeks ahead, NPCA is hosting a series of conversations around racial equity. Those will help shape the . . .

Read More

Review — HOUSE OF THE ANCIENTS & OTHER STORIES by Clifford Garstang (Korea)

  HOUSE OF THE ANCIENTS & OTHER STORIES by Clifford Garstang (Korea 1976-77) Press 53 Publisher 172 pages May 2020 $17.95 (paperback)   Reviewed by Bill Preston (Thailand 1977-80) “Bad men,” wrote novelist and short story writer Jean McGarry, “make for more interesting stories.” I imagine that Clifford Garstang would be inclined to agree. You could certainly make that case for many of the male characters in his new collection, House of the Ancients & Other Stories. Such a sentiment crossed my mind more than once as I read through this strange and often disturbing collection. But hold on. What, exactly, do we mean by bad? And just who, really, is qualified to pass such judgment? Those who live in glass houses, as the saying goes, should not be quick to throw stones. Are we not, as human beings, all flawed? The twenty-three stories in House of the Ancients reflect, . . .

Read More

Copyright © 2019. Peace Corps Worldwide.