Senegal Bound

I can’t believe that this is all finally beginning!  For the past six months I’ve been working on a completely different research project and now that it’s finished, I can begin to focus on this amazing journey towards the completion of my honors thesis.  My project is somewhat of a combination of my interests in both of my majors – International Relations and French, with a little Econ mixed in for good measure.  I will be focusing on France’s unique and ongoing relationship with Senegal, both as a colony and an independent nation.  Whenever we think about “imperialism” we tend to consider it to be a phenomenon of the past.  However, I believe that the strategic dispersal of development aid is just another tool France uses to maintain a sphere of influence– a “new imperialism.”  I chose to use Senegal as a case study through which to evaluate the impact of France on its former colonies because Senegal has always maintained a close and rather special relationship with its mother country.  I am beyond excited to travel to the African continent for the first time in order to get an idea of how French development aid functions on the ground and its effect on the Senegalese.