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Making them like us (Peace Corps volunteers in the 1960s)

Fischer, Fritz
Making them like us (Peace Corps volunteers in the 1960s)
Making them like us (Peace Corps volunteers in the 1960s)

Making them like us (Peace Corps volunteers in the 1960s)

Fischer, Fritz
21,90€
Consulte disponibilidad

When John F. Kennedy urged Americans in 1961 to ask "what you can do for your country," young idealists flocked to join the newly formed Peace Corps. Designed to help the nations of the so-called third world replicate American-style prosperity and democracy, the Peace Corps sent out volunteers to apply traditional pioneer virtues to the "new fronti...
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When John F. Kennedy urged Americans in 1961 to ask "what you can do for your country," young idealists flocked to join the newly formed Peace Corps. Designed to help the nations of the so-called third world replicate American-style prosperity and democracy, the Peace Corps sent out volunteers to apply traditional pioneer virtues to the "new frontiers" of Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Based on newly available records, Making Them Like Us explores the dissonance between the straightforward economic development envisioned by Peace Corps leaders and the complicated realities--ill-defined jobs, entrenched bureaucracies, and resentful hosts--encountered by the volunteers who served during the agency's first decade. Trained for a spartan existence, many volunteers found themselves living in well-appointed homes and even employing servants. Prepared to dig ditches or build houses, more than half served as English teachers or worked in offices. Expecting to forge egalitarian friendships, many found themselves seen as American imperialists. The author describes how most Peace Corps workers eventually became alienated from the lofty aims of their leaders, returning to the United States with a more pragmatic, nuanced perspective on how cultures interact.