What You Can Do for Your Country: An Oral History of the Peace Corps

Karen Schwarz, Author William Morrow & Company $21 (0p) ISBN 978-0-688-07559-0
In Schwarz's view, the Peace Corps, which marks its 30th anniversary this year, is politically complex and far less successful than its public image would suggest. Though probably over-romanticized as a Kennedy-era innovation that lured idealistic college students into its ranks, the Corps' ongoing presence, according to volunteers interviewed here, was often in need of overhaul, depending on who occupied the White House. We learn that not all volunteers were heroic--not all lived among the underdeveloped peoples they were purportedly to serve, and not all were equipped, psychologically or technically, to help the world's poor. Concluding on a note of limited optimism for the future of the Corps, which is currently enjoying a surge in applications, Schwarz, a Penthouse editor, effectively shapes the mosaic of volunteers' experiences. Photos not seen by PW. (June)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1991
Release date: 07/01/1991
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-385-46898-5
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