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The Carletonian

An apology from the Humanities Center

< the Editors:

We attended Tuesday night’s talk by Lori Pappas of the Global Team for Local Initiatives (GTLI) knowing that we would hear about important work that this NGO has been doing with public health and education with the Hamer in Southwest Ethiopia. 

This organization is engaging successfully in micro-lending and water purification, and is enhancing educational opportunities for girls, and the director has clearly had exceptional success with many of her programs.

We were, however, struck by the way some of the images seemed to objectify the Hamer and were reminded how aware we all must be when talking about other cultures to work against such tendencies, however unintentional, in our society.  

Within the context of Ms. Pappas talk, and knowing the work she does, we are certain that no offense was intended. Nonetheless in our roles in the Humanities Center and Economics Department, which co-sponsored Ms. Pappas’s talk, we wish to apologize to any students who attended and were made uncomfortable and to encourage continued conversations around complex issues of Development work in Africa and elsewhere.  


Susannah Ottaway, Director of the Humanities Center at Carleton

Martha Paas, Economics Department

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