Emma Schwartzman, CHID
Im making a documentary about a UW exploration seminar to West Africa. Ylva Hernlund, from the Anthropology department, will lead a group of 20 undergraduate students through Senegal and The Gambia for one month from August 20-September 20. All students will study the pre and post imerial history of these former french colonies and slave trade hubs. Looking beyond conventional ideas that regard Africa as culturally primitive, students will focus on the ways in which these nations built a government infastructure when they gained independence, and how Senegal and Gambia made different political and governmental choices. These nations may not be sophisticated in an industrial sense, but the intellectual, political, and cultural sophistication is often overlooked. In addition to the shared curriculum, students are required to complete their own independent project. Students come from a wide array of majors, from CHID to Anthropology, to Math, to Business, to Dance and Music. Only a few students have ever travelled to Africa. My project will cover all aspects of the trip in order to give others an idea of what it was like, as well as provide all participants with a montage of landscape, events and interviews upon which they can reflect after they get home.