#WhiteHistoryMonth: How Unexpected
Dan Moshenberg | March 30th, 2014


From this week’s Washington Post Travel Section:

How unexpected: There was more modernity than I expected, such as extremely modern infrastructure (roads, etc.) in many places, although there is still poverty there. Also, the rate of exchange, coupled with the reasonable prices, meant that meals (and wine) were a fraction of what they are here in the United States. The quality of the beef was outstanding — and we’ve tasted beef from Argentina, Brazil, Chicago, etc. This was the best!

How unexpected. Roads.

Image: Africa is a Country

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Director of Women's Studies Program at George Washington University and blogger

8 thoughts on “#WhiteHistoryMonth: How Unexpected

  1. Some of the things posted on this blog are exceedingly stupid. Surprise! A middle class American couple who have never traveled to Africa has their expectations challenged when they actually do so!

    Let’s make fun of them!!!!

    • Why not? Why excuse ignorance? Why is the ignorance worthy of defense but the pointing out of it an abomination? A quick Google search could have shown them otherwise.

  2. It is rather interesting to me that anyone who professes to want to travel, and in particular, a lifelong dream, is unaware of the tremendous contrasts in Africa–whichever country on the continent, though I have only traveled to South Africa 10 times ranging from 2003-2011. It is like most areas in any geographic location, a mix of urban and rural, and hard to fathom that people do not know there are cities and interstate highways along with rural roads and small communities. Many of the communities have better infrastructure than the colonias in Southwest Texas, for example.

    I recall when I planned to spend 3 months there and people were aghast–where would I get my food? “From the grocery store across the street from my flat.” They have grocery stores??

  3. “Cultural connection or disconnect: We met amazing, extremely friendly travelers, most of whom were from the United Kingdom or Scandinavia. We were overwhelmed by the friendly service we found in the hotels and restaurants, and the tour guides (for day tours and safari, etc.) were informative and helpful.”

    Because I always go to countries to mingle with foreigners!

  4. If Americans are uniquely ignorant travellers (which in my opinion they are), then, as far as I’m concerned, these comments say a lot about American parochialism and absolutely nothing about the places they visit.

  5. Aye! They certainly look like they’ve eaten quite a bit of beef “from Argentina, Brazil and Chicago”. I suppose this is quite the expert thumbs up.

  6. Let’s also make fun of those ignorant Africans coming to Europe. Those who never used a sit down toilet, perhaps never even saw one. Never ate with a silver fork from a porcelain plate, on a linen table cloth. Boy do they look out of place. Let’s take them down.
    “No excuse for ignorance.”

  7. Thanks all. My concern was not so much with the couple but rather with the Washington Post. This was not an overheard conversation. If it were, I wouldn’t have shared it. This was an article in a leading newspaper, an article that was vetted and edited by a staff of a leading newspaper. Whether the tourist couple are innocents or imperialists abroad is of interest, but of greater concern, to me at least, is the newspaper and its decisions.

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