Sunday, September 1, 2013

Back in DC

Professors like everyone else do a lot of multi-tasking. As we move up the ranks, we end up taking on more research projects (because so many topics are so interesting and/or need to be researched), as well as helping run our professions (training graduate students, running conferences, editing scholarly journals, and so on) and our universities (professors basically run the universities). It is all fascinating work, while at the same time a bit unwieldy.

I spent July in St. Louis, where I conducted research on the Pruitt-Igoe public housing project. Then, I spent August in New York City, where I conducted research on the Non-Aligned Movement. Many people don't know what the Non-Aligned Movement is. Basically, in the 1950s, Third World countries that had become independent from the colonial powers decided to end their dependence on (or alignment with) the United States, the Soviet Union, and many of the former colonial powers. They focused on working together by investing in, producing with, and buying from each other. I am studying the companies, banks, export promotion agencies, regional integration groups, and other economic organizations they created, which we can see as economic globalization. OPEC is just one example of a non-aligned economic organization, which provided new investment funds for Third World production. Many DC residents likely followed the Non-Aligned Movement quite closely during its most successful period in the 1960s and 1970s.

While I put together my next post, I want to highlight a great photo essay by Larry Janezich on Ward 6's Franks Place:

Franks Place: One of the First Capitol Hill Neighborhood Vendors
by Larry Janezich

Frank Lloyd has stationed his business on the corner of 7th and Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, since 1984, selling sunglasses, hats, t-shirts and other merchandise to passersby.
Frank Lloyd. Photo by Larry Janezich.
  “I first set up on Metro Plaza,” he says, but “they moved me over here.”  “Over here” is the sidewalk next to CVS where he sets up five or six days a week...

While vending is Lloyd’s livelihood, drumming is his passion...At first self-taught, Lloyd later trained with the Andrew Cacho African Drummers and Dancers, a group founded in the early 70s which taught African Dance and Drumming to youths at Friendship House and later at a location on 8th Street... Read more here.   
Yes, Friendship House provided many resources to Ward 6...

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