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Old 03-24-2007, 03:05 AM   #1
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A Time for Miracles - Bono

Great essay by our man....discuss


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Old 03-24-2007, 06:51 AM   #2
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Part of the answer lies eight miles away.

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Old 03-24-2007, 10:03 AM   #3
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Thanks for posting I love to read Bonos writing.
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Old 03-24-2007, 02:57 PM   #4
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Well since he invoked the Marshall Plan...

It's just one small piece of the picture, but I think a clearer, education-based awareness of what Africa is historically, culturally and politically might help with cultivating the sense of basic solidarity and faith in another continent's future that greatly helped to make domestic support for the Marshall Plan possible. (Granted, Cold War geopolitical strategizing played heavily into it too, and one can argue the details of just how central the Marshall Plan was to the postwar European recovery; I'm talking in generalizations here though.) I don't know how it is in Europe nor precisely how it is in US high schools nowadays, but speaking for myself at least, Africa was pretty much a total blank for me until I took a course on African politics in college. Before that, as best as I can recall, I'd studied only ancient Egypt and an ultracondensed version of the colonial period, which the teachers hurried through with the perfunctory air of someone who had to slip a token unit on the topic in there. European history study was considerably more extensive and rigorous and livened up with movies and projects and so forth, and there are just so many characters and periods and places there I remember studying that felt palpably real to me before I ever went there in a way, say, Kenya or Nigeria wouldn't. When I studied abroad in India I noticed that there it wasn't so much like that; even my friends who were, say, botany or music majors could say a few things from past study about the Songhai or Ashanti or Aksumite empires, and were a lot clearer than I was on who did what when and where during the colonial period. Unsurprisingly, they were more clear on the current political landscape there as well. Like I said, it's just one piece of the picture, but I do think when the only real images you have of Africa are starving villagers or genocidal warlords or that-one-head-of-whatever-country-it-is-who-has-the-wacky-ideas-about-AIDS, it makes it that much harder to feel an abiding concern for their welfare, or any optimism about what their future might be like with the right kinds of structural support, or for that matter to grasp how real the prospect of 'the extremism of our age' taking root there might be.
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Old 03-24-2007, 03:11 PM   #5
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Originally posted by yolland
Before that, as best as I can recall, I'd studied only ancient Egypt and an ultracondensed version of the colonial period
Sadly, it's exactly the same here in Germany.
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Old 03-24-2007, 03:33 PM   #6
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To be honest the classes I learned most about Africa were science courses. For example, evolutionary biology, or certain botany classes.

Most of the things I learned about Africa came about because my Mom has cousins in Namibia and South Africa and one of my best friends is originally from Nairobi. Our schools are really deficient in courses with an emphasis on Africa.
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Old 03-26-2007, 05:00 PM   #7
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I love reading Bono's writing.

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