I am fascinated with this concept of the Peace Corp and what it does. I have a love-hate relationship with it but I still think the organization seeks to do a great deal of good.
3 Great Peace-Corp Books
Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali
All Anthro 101 students had to read this when I was in college. It was my first introduction to the Peace Corps, what they do and what they strive to do.
It was a great introduction and the book itself is well written. It has a very soft and emotional feel so you connect with the people in it. It also made me want to do the Peace Crops and I became very sad when I realised I couldn’t.
The Ponds of Kalambayi
Again, this was another college read. This was required reading for an upper level seminar in African Studies and it is a good depiction of culture clashes between Peace Corp individual and the community. Any time you’re uprooted from what you know and are thrown into a different setting, problems will arrive. This book is great because it teaches you that no amount of reading or prep will actually prepare you for real life in a different culture.
História, História: Two Years in the Cape Verde Islands
I had to review this book earlier this year and fell in love with it. It’s a very frank and brutally honest depiction of Peace Corps life. Some books tend to portray an idealistic view of Peace Crop volunteering and what it does for both the individual and host community. Sometimes, problems do occur and you have to learn to take care of yourself.