"To the living we owe respect, but to the dead we owe only the truth" - Voltaire

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Moving Forward with “A Passion to Understand”

Hector Pieterson Memorial and MuseumWho Gave Their Lives to The Struggle

If I had to choose to go forward with only one of my blogs and to delete the other two, I would choose A Passion to Understand which is a bit strange seeing as this is the blog I neglect the most. I have justified that neglect somewhat because I am working full time and studying in the evenings and because those studies will eventually enable me to move forward with some of the themes raised in this blog.

I am a couple of months away from obtaining my AAT qualification and will then move to one of the professional qualifications such as CIPFA or ACCA (those are the biggest contenders at the moment).  My dream is to work in a volunteer capacity in emerging or post-conflict economies and to work towards establishing proper governance and accountability in those countries, whether in the private or public sector.

I’m really happy where I work at the moment and my employer is a global forerunner in establishing these programmes so I am unsure whether the volunteer work would be on short term contracts through organisations such as AfID or whether I’d aim for longer term pursuits. In my dreams, I’m working internal audit for international development agencies.


Upcoming Themes on A Passion to Understand

Despite having a very good reason for neglect, the fact remains that the themes of this blog are very important to me and I wish to continue learning about them and breaking them down in such a way that others can learn about them too. For this reason, I have formed a plan to cover the following themes in the next 6 – 9 months:

The Arab Spring: I will complete my series on A Decade of Conflict Leading up to the Arab Spring with posts on:

  • Israel / Hezbollah War in Lebanon (2006)
  • Gaza War (2008 – 2009)
  • Book review of The Battle for the Arab Spring: Revolution, Counter-Revolution and the Making of a New Era by Lin Noueihed and Alex Warren

Apartheid: I will continue my focus on South Africa and Apartheid with posts on:

  • The Apartheid Museum, Johannesburg
  • Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum, Johannesburg
  • Book review of Soweto: 16 June 1976 by Elsabé Brink, Gandhi Malungane, Steve Lebelo, Dumisane Ntshangase, Sue Krige

This will be followed by a second series later in the year or early next year focusing on Apartheid laws and the violence during the 80s and early 90s.

Former Yugoslavia: I will spend some time focusing on Bosnia this year and the Bosnian War with posts on:

  • Impressions of Mostar and Sarajevo
  • Book review of Zlata's Diary by Zlata Filipović
  • Book review of The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia by Tim Judah (if I can finish it. It is not light reading)

Get Involved with A Passion to Understand

There are two opportunities to get involved with the blog at the moment.

Interviews: I contact both author and key contact interviews on the blog and am always looking for new people to speak to. Previous interviewees include Mark S. Smith, author of Treblinka Survivor: The Life and Death of Hershl Sperling and Dr. Ajaz Khan of Lendwithcare.org. 

If you would like to speak to me about your work, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Write for us: If you would like to contribute to A Passion to Understand, please email me with your topic and I will consider it for inclusion on the blog. This is open to bloggers, activists, key contacts, students and other interested parties and no commercial links will be considered.

Please email me at the address below or contact me on Twitter @APassionBlog.

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