Ethiopia in Depth – A Peace Corps Publication

I found this short booklet published on March 24, 2014, listed on Amazon, and selling for $12.95. Inside at the bottom of all the pages is: PEACE CORPS ETHIOPIA  WELCOME BOOK. It was published by the Peace Corps, printed in North Haven, CT, and lists no author(s). It appears the book was given to anyone interested in joining the agency or had been assigned to Ethiopia. The book lists a lot of resources for information about the country as well as the agency. There are names and email addresses of groups of former Ethiopia Volunteers as well as a short list of books about the Peace Corps and Ethiopia. Three pages are devoted to “Living Conditions and Volunteer Lifestyle, ” two pages on “Peace Corps Training.”

Well designed, the booklet has a half dozen full page photos of PCVs in-country, as well as four pages of what to pack for Ethiopia. That list, the introduction says, “”has been complied by Volunteers serving in Ethiopia and is based on their experience.”

Among the dozens of sections in the booklet are:

  • Language Training
  • Helping You Stay Healthy
  • Professionalism, Dress, and Behavior
  • Personal Hygiene and Toiletry Items
  • Women’s Health Information
  • Staying Safe: Don’t Be A target for Crime

This is what I found on Amazon about the book.

Ethiopia in Depth – A Peace Corps Publication
by Peace Corps

Product Details
Format:Paperback
Language:English
ISBN:1497462193
ISBN13:9781497462199
Release Date:March 2014
Publisher:CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Length:50 Pages
Weight:0.40 lbs.
Dimensions:0.1″ x 8.5″ x 11.0″

 

On the first page, the booklet gives this short history of the country

Ethiopia is home to more than 80 ethnic and linguistic communities. Proud to be an African state that was never colonized, the Kingdom of Ethiopia dates back to the first millennium. King Menelik I, the legendary son of Queen Sheba and King Solomon of Israel, established his kingdom in Axum. After the rise of Islam in the seventh century, the kingdom became isolated as Arabs gained control of the Red Sea trading routes. In the 12th century, the successor of the Axumite dynasty had expanded southward, principally to Lalibela. Ethiopia’s modern period (post-1855) was characterized by the process of recreating a cohesive state: by Emperor Haile Selassie; by the Marxist regime of Mengistu Haile Mariam; and, since mid-1991, by the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) under Meles Zenawi. The period has been dominated by recurring conflict with neighboring Eritrea, which was a province of Ethiopia until it gained independence in 1991. A tentative cease-fire ended hostilities in 2000, but the border remains undefined and tensions continue, particularly since the 2007 withdrawal of U.N. peacekeepers.

There are also a series of short greetings from in-country PCVs. Their names are not listed. And the booklet ends with the names and phone numbers of contacts at Peace Corps HQ which was then at 1111 20th Street NW in Washington, D.C.

What is missing from the booklet is any history of previous PCVs in Ethiopia. That history, I guess, didn’t matter to the HQ Staff 52 years after 324 Volunteers first arrived in Addis Ababa.

While I have not seen other booklets about other Peace Corps projects, it is possible all of the  countries had booklets published during this period by the agency.

 

 

 

3 Comments

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  • We would very much like to add a copy of this book to the Museum of the Peace Corps Experience collection.

    If you own a copy you are willing to donate, please visit the Museum website at https://museumofthepeacecorpsexperience.org. Click on OBJECTS and then CONTRIBUTE where you will find at the bottom of the page a button GIFT AN OBJECT. Click there and fill out and submit the form. Our Collections Team will get back to you with details.

    Thank you to the hundreds of RPCVs who are contributing objects, stories, and money to the Museum. You are building a lasting legacy for education and research about building community and global peace from the grassroots up.

    Patricia Wand
    Colombia 1963-1965
    President, Museum of the Peace Corps Experience Board

  • Great detective work! All of these valuable tomes should be in a special collection at the Library of Congress along with memoirs, anthologies and history books (whether they were written by volunteers, staff or not). COVID was a reminder how quickly events change programs. If the Peace Corps is worth remembr4ing, then a special colection is a must. Our government is giving away missiles. Some of these cost 50 to 100k each. They can’t afford a book collection?

  • Just ordered a copy online. Can’t wait to get it. Thanks for the heads up. I’ve just come upon Jack Prebis’s working list of books he was drafting to be sent off in the book locker with volunteers. Quite interesting.
    Joe Wheaton

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