The Peace Corps concieved in the can-do spirit of the sixties, embodied America's long pursuit of moral leadership on a global scale. Traversing four decades and three continents, this story of the Peace Corps and the people and politics behind it looks at American idealism at work amid the hard political realities of the second half of the 20th century. The Peace Corps broached the age-old dilemma of US foreign policy: how to reconcile the imperatives and temptations of power politics with the ideals of freedom and self-determination for all nations. With stories from returned volunteers of exotic places and daunting circumstances, this is an account of the successes and failures of this governmental organization, and the geopolitics and personal convictions that underpin it. Finally the text addresses the question of whether the Peace Corps most helped the countries that received its volunteers, or whether its greater service was to America and its sense of national identity and mission.
Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman is Dwight E. Stanford Professor of American Foreign Relations at San Diego State University.
* Prologue * Love and Youth in a Brave New World * Shriver Hits the Ground Running * Peace Corps Cousins * Decolonization versus the Cold War * The Hero's Adventure * Ghana * Slippery Slopes * Under Attack * The Peace Corps Dilemma * Balancing Ideals and Self-Interest * Appendix: Peace Corps Data * Notes * Index
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- ID: 9780674003804
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