Bruce M. Knauft

 

Liberia Engagement Project

In January and again in June of 2007, Professor Knauft traveled to Liberia to assess possibilities for institutional connection, engagement with NGOs, the work of Liberia's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and the operation and impact of international aid projects, including in rural Liberia near the country’s international border with Guinea and Sierra Leone.  
During his first trip, Dr. Knauft confronted and documented the great devastation from the Liberian civil wars and made contact with organizations and individuals engaged in recovery efforts in Liberia, including the rebuilding of civil trust and hope for the future.  Dr. Knauft’s photo documentary and narrated sound track concerning this trip, including his overland travel to rural areas of Lofa County, which were an epicenter of violent conflict, was recorded on February 8, 2007.

To access Dr. Knauft’s first Liberian documentary, click here.

Dr. Knauft’s second trip to Liberia retraced his previous route and documented the remarkable rebuilding of roads and physical structures in northern Liberia that occurred during the five months since his previous visit.  He engaged increasingly with projects, staff, and local Liberians associated with the international aid that is currently supporting infrastructure throughout the country.  A difficult question is whether and how the groundswell of temporary international aid in Liberia can provide long term support and transition to civil society, economic development, and the growth and maintenance of social services in the country. Dr. Knauft’s photo documentary concerning physical rebuilding and questions of sustainability in the Liberian recovery was recorded on July 24, 2007.

To access Dr. Knauft’s second Liberian documentary, click here.