Hey, Y’all! I’m Maya Hairston, a junior Conflict Analysis and Resolution major at George Mason University. I am taking a course called Social Movements in South Africa for my international conflict field experience credit. I chose to study abroad because I love putting myself in uncomfortable situations. One can only truly transform through facing discomfort. Flying across the Atlantic Ocean for 20+ hours will certainly challenge my thoughts on what it truly means to be independent.
I chose to study abroad in South Africa because I am highly interested in the parallel between the Civil Rights Movement in the United States and the Anti-Apartheid Movement in South Africa. The fact that “equality” was achieved, but cultural and structural violence still exists on both continents is astounding. I plan to focus my studies on how memorialization is often a cause of discursive conflicts.
On this blog, I plan to share my daily adventures through journaling, pictures, and videos. By the time I return, I hope to be more empathetic to the trials and tribulations that humans experience globally. Also, I hope to incorporate my external view of America into my classroom learning experiences as I begin my senior year of college. My colligate days are numbered, but I know that my 15 days in South Africa will strengthen my interpersonal communication skills and alter my perspective as a global citizen.
Check back here daily to see each day of my 15 day experience!