Friday, April 4, 2008

Taking Books to the People

I have gotten a healthy start in The Camel Bookmobile and find the trip fascinating.

Even though I love to read and reading has enriched my life and taking books to those who would not otherwise have books initially sounds like a wonderful project, I wonder whether this like other endeavors which changes the cultures of others is the right thing to do. Although much less violent than our current taking of democracy to Iraq, it is a similar situation in which we presume that our way of life is better than that of other cultures.

The other thing that disturbs me about the book is that some of the books taken to the people are so inappropriate to the people in Kenya. I realize that funds were scarce and they took what was given to them, but it bothers me that there wasn't stricter criteria for the books taken.

Speaking of strict, the requirement that if one book is not returned the whole community loses camel bookmobile services also seems overly harsh. I feel like I am talking out of all sides of my mouth--I question the wisdom of taking the books to the people, about the quality criteria, and yet am concerned about the people losing this opportunity because of one person in the community not returning a book.

1 comment:

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Interesting dilemma, isn't it, Shirley?