Just one week into their time in Namibia, this group has used every minute to soak up the experience. Here is a quick overview of some of the ways they are engaging academically and culturally in the fourth (!) country they’ve visited so far. Next adventure on the horizon – midterms!
In Windhoek, Namibia’s capital city, the group visited the parliament gardens, Christ Church, and Independence Memorial Museum to learn about liberation movements and the legacies of colonialism here. The Christ Church was built as a symbol of peace following wars between the Germans, Herero, and Nama peoples and now stands as a historical landmark in the city. In the quest to understand Namibia’s fight for indepence, they also learned about SWAPO (South West Africa People’s Organisation), a group founded in 1960 as a nationalist organization fighting for liberation from South African rule that is the now-independent nation’s leading political party.
R to L: Savannah, Claire, Piper, Ashelynn, Lilla, Cora, Marley, Maddie, Macy, Hazel, and Harper
A view of Windhoek from the museum’s roof:
Check out this neat map from a history project examining land and movement of people in the region.
At Cape Cross, TTS39 dug even deeper into Namibia’s colonial past to visit the spot where the first Portuguese explorer set foot. It’s also the largest breeding colony of seals – by one teacher’s account and corroborated by the photos, more than a bit stinky – and Leslie led science class learning about the area’s weather patterns while everyone tried to breathe through their mouth to avoid the aroma.
A stop at Spittskop included an examination of rock art from the San people. This aligned with studies around the San’s Indigenous history, land rights, social marginalization, and the complexity of “performing culture” for tourism. Our teacher Meredith, who grew up in southwest Colorado, also noted it looked a lot like southern Utah with red dirt and big rock pillars jutting up into the sky.
Finally, they visited Penduka Village, a cooperative run by women that trains artisans and sells high quality crafts to support their project. There were organic gardens on site too!
– Mary Reid Munford, Academic Dean (on behalf of your trusty US-based home office team!)