Wednesday, April 02, 2003

WHAT IS THIS BLOG ALL ABOUT
Who am I? What is the nature of this blog? Do I always start my essays with questions?

My nickname is Popeye Chicken, for an obscure reason (as goes it with most nicknames) which I will not bore you with. Though I can affirm that it has nothing to do with the fast food place of the same name.

I am a 29 year old man who lives in upstate New York. In addition to composing short stories and essays, I am a freelance writer. One of the reasons I have created this blog to further promoting my work, with the hopes that some visitors will be interested in publishing it. Or at the very least, I hope to give people a perspective that they might not read elsewhere. My work has already appeared in such publications as The Clarkson Integrator, ça va?, The Chronicle and Mano Vision, a West African magazine based in London.

After graduating from Clarkson University, I served for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer math teacher in the Republic of Guinea, West Africa. As a result, I follow very closely the affairs of the African continent in general and the West African sub-region in particular.

I have decided to dedicate this blog to discussion of the social affairs, politics and culture of sub-Saharan Africa. Africa is a breathtakingly diverse continent and one I care about greatly. I've consecrated this blog to discussion of African issues because western media coverage of the continent is almost non-existent, except when it comes to the most extreme tragedies. While war, famine and AIDS devastates the life of far too many people on the continent, I hope to bring a different perspective. To compliment the bad news with THE OTHER SIDE of the picture. The Africa that works. Highlighting how the majority of people on the continent live in relative harmony with each other, help each other and the like. Some think that by presenting the positive aspects is to deny the existence of the bad things or to whitewash them. I disagree. I believe both are essential to a greater understanding of what's going on in various African countries. You need to know what's wrong before you can try to fix it. But it also gives hope to offer examples of things that have been fixed. Or that were never broken in the first place.

I expect to translate many of my English writings into French (and vice versa). If you are interested in the French version of my Africa writings, go to: http://popeyeafrique.blogspot.com

You can contact me directly at: popeyeckn@yahoo.com.

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