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Peace Corps Authors Bibliography

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Find books in the Library of Congress Collections by 200 authors who served in the Peace Corps.

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Zeitlin, Arnold (Ghana, 1961–63).

To the Peace Corps, with Love. 1st ed. Garden City, New York: Doubleday, 1965. Library of Congress Permalink:

To the Peace Corps, with Love is one of the earliest nonfictional accounts of the Peace Corps experience. Although an obscure work long out of print, it is regarded as a Peace Corps “classic.” Arnold Zeitlin, a former Hollywood reporter, was in the first Peace Corps contingent to go anywhere, arriving in Accra, Ghana, in October 1961. Although without any teaching experience, he started off teaching English in a secondary school. He provides considerable insight to the cross-cultural experience of being a white American in Ghana and the special treatment that came with it. His wife, Marian, a fellow PCV, contributed a chapter.

Zimmerman, Jonathan (Nepal, 1983–85).

Innocents Abroad: American Teachers in the American Century. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2006. Library of Congress Permalink:

Publisher’s description: “Protestant missionaries in Latin America, colonial “civilizers” in the Pacific, Peace Corps Volunteers in Africa, since the 1890s, thousands of American teachers—mostly young, white, middle-class, and inexperienced—have fanned out across the globe. Innocents Abroad tells the story of what they intended to teach and what lessons they learned. Drawing on extensive archives of the teachers’ letters and diaries, as well as more recent accounts, Jonathan Zimmerman argues that until the early twentieth century, the teachers assumed their own superiority; they sought to bring civilization, Protestantism, and soap to their host countries. But by the mid-twentieth century, as teachers borrowed the concept of “culture” from influential anthropologists, they became far more self-questioning about their ethical and social assumptions, their educational theories, and the complexity of their role in a foreign society. Filled with anecdotes and dilemmas—often funny, always vivid—Zimmerman’s narrative explores the teachers’ shifting attitudes about their country and themselves, in a world that was more unexpected and unsettling than they could have imagined.”

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