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Voices from the Peace CorpsFifty Years of Kentucky Volunteers$
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Angene Wilson and Jack Wilson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780813129754

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813129754.001.0001

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Why We Went

Why We Went

(p.1) Chapter 1 Why We Went
Voices from the Peace Corps

Angene Wilson

Jack Wilson

University Press of Kentucky

Throughout the years, the Peace Corps has attracted several volunteers. In the first part of this chapter, the experiences and the motivations of six different volunteers across five different decades are illustrated—Martin and Patsy Tracy in Turkey, Rona Roberts in the Philippines, Rebecca Roach in Liberia, Sarah Cross Oddo in Jamaica, and Aaron Shraberg in China. The Peace Corps is often associated with President John F. Kennedy since he was the one who established the organization through an executive order on March 1, 1961. Volunteers often point out the challenge that Kennedy articulated in his inaugural speech asking not what America could do for each person but instead what could collectively be done towards achieving the freedom of man. During the initial period of the Peace Corps, peace was associated with being patriotic, and the movement encouraged several volunteers during and after the 1960s.

Keywords:   Peace Corps, freedom of man, patriotism, John F. Kennedy, volunteers, peace

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