I had been back at Asticou about five weeks when I realized that the passive receiver of language learning was not working for me, and I spent a weekend thinking about some of the challenges I had gone through in the previous year. I kept coming back to the tutor’s analysis — I wasn’t letting go.… Read the rest
Even though all of us said that we weren’t ready (My experiences learning French – Part 1), the school sent us for the oral test.
And all of us except one failed. The one who passed? The weakest one among us. Partly as her “stories” for telling what she did for a living were pretty simple in comparisons — she was a clerk who did very basic admin work.… Read the rest
I am a not a linguist by anyone’s definition. I’m not very eloquent in speaking English, let alone any other language. I can write pretty well in English, and I edit even better, but other languages were never my strength. I grew up in Peterborough, which was not exactly the hub of linguistic diversity.… Read the rest
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been blogging about the merger of DFAIT and CIDA and some of the implementation issues that I think they’ll face. In the short-term, it’s probably mostly about basic implementation and structural questions. In the medium-term, there’s a larger question about “what does ‘development’ mean in a Canadian context”, how the new DFATD sets priorities, and even how to potentially modify legislation that appears to be narrowly focused on development but is really an almost-meaningless bit of rhetoric that combines apples, oranges and potentially a few truck parts, and calls it “poverty reduction”.… Read the rest
As with all posts on this site, my views are my own and obviously not that of my paycheque provider. Not that anyone complained, or that I’m being overly “critical” of decisions, as the reality of most decisions made by governments when it comes to structural changes is that most are simply that — choices.… Read the rest
Each year, thousands of people compete for jobs at the Department of Foreign Affairs. But, while many are called, few are chosen (100-ish). Yet yesterday, DFAIT’s ranks swelled by 1800 people, most of whom no doubt greeted the news with a lot less enthusiasm than DFAIT’s normal hirings. With the announcement that CIDA was being “folded” into DFAIT, many are stressed that this sounds a death knell for development, that all principles of development will go out the window, and that CIDA will essentially disappear.… Read the rest