Peace Corps, Colombia, 1960s, Latin America
John F. Kennedy initiated the Peace Corps in 1961 at the height of the Cold War to provide needed manpower and promote understanding with the underdeveloped world. This study examines Peace Corps work in Colombia during the 1960s within the framework of U.S. Cold War policy. It explores the experiences of volunteers in Colombia and contrasts their accounts with Peace Corps reports and presentations to Congress. It intends to show the agency's assessment of volunteer work and how it compares to the volunteers' views and Congressional reports. Although the Peace Corps presented some topics and themes expressed by volunteers, the thesis exposes the discrepancies that existed between Peace Corps reports and the volunteers' experiences. Volunteer accounts reveal that there were some criticisms and stories that the agency did not report. Furthermore, evidence sheds light on the obstacles volunteers encountered, how they were presented by the Peace Corps, as well as the value of volunteer work as perceived by volunteers. Finally, the Peace Corps articulated a goal of making friends in the underdeveloped world, and the accounts of the volunteers support the Peace Corps assertion that volunteers were successful in fostering relations and understanding in Colombia during the 1960s.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
James, John, "United States Cold War Policy, The Peace Corps And Its Volunteers In Colombia In The 1960s." (2008). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3630.
Restricted to the UCF community until June 2008; it will then be open access.