Thursday, July 26, 2012
The transition of power in Ghana to the sitting vice president appears to have gone smoothly. Ghana has established itself as a mature and stable democratic republic in recent years. Unlike the US endeavours to export democracy to places like Afghanistan and Iraq, Ghana has been remarkably successful in establishing a vibrant free market economy, stable democratic political system, and respect for human rights. It did all this on its own without any foreign intervention from the US.
Yesterday I went to the Vefa Centre for the first time in two years. It has some new additions including a new coffee shop, a central fountain, and a sushi bar that were not there two years ago. Betastores Three which took over Ramstor as the anchor grocery store is now closed. But, there is a sign in Russian saying that a supermarket is coming to the vacated space soon.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Monday, July 16, 2012
Sunday, July 15, 2012
The more I read about the sheer stupidity of academics in universities in the White English speaking world the happier I am to be working at the University Ghana. There are a few exceptions like SOAS. But, for the most part the people working at universities in the US, UK, and Australia as faculty are absolutely horrible people. Nowhere else can one find such egotistical, thin skinned, blowhards. I am not sure what went wrong, but the domination of the industry in the above countries by complete jerks does appear to be a major problem.
Sunday, July 08, 2012
I have noticed there are a lot more Indians in Bishkek now than there were even last year. It especially hit home when I went to pick up my visa extension at OVIR and noticed that my passport was the lone US one among a veritable sea of Indian passports. Despite their increased presence here there are still very few Indian restaurants in town.
Saturday, July 07, 2012
Kyrgyzstan has a number of beverages that are not available in Ghana. Most of these are sold at stands on the sidewalk similar to the traditional US lemonade stand. The most common stands are Shoro and Tan. They each sell a version of sour milk mixed with soda water and salt, iced tea with lemon flavor, and a grain based beverage. I generally either get the sour milk drink from Shoro or the iced tea from Tan. Other beverages one sometimes sees on the street are kvass and compot.
Wednesday, July 04, 2012
Tuesday, July 03, 2012
In Ghana I don't watch much local television. I don't pay much attention to it here either. But, sometimes I notice programs playing in the background. Kyrgyzstan gets a variety of channels from neighboring countries such as Russia, Kazakhstan, and China in addition to local fare. The other day I noticed that a movie from China dubbed in Russian was playing on a station based in Kazakhstan. For some reason that struck me as funny.
Sunday, July 01, 2012
Yesterday I had a pretty good idea for a journal article. I started writing it out and I have got 16 pages double spaced finished so far. I even managed to work some of the material I found in the archives here into the footnotes. The article is a comparison of African diasporic populations to other similar diasporic groups in the USSR such as the ethnic Germans, Koreans, Jews, Greeks, Finns, and other nationalities with ancestral origins in Europe and East Asia. There is not a whole lot written on Soviet citizens of African ancestry, but I think I have enough to write a solid comparative article. It certainly continues my development along a path of doing more comparative scholarship with regards to Africa.