a photo of the sign of the place where me and my studyin'
cohorts spent more or less the first week of November.
CESCI (The Center for Experiencing Socio-Cultural
Interaction) is a retreat and training center for
Gandhian Activists. CESCI was founded and funded by a
Swiss woman named Maja Koene in the early 90's. She lived
and did social work here for several years before she
died. CESCI is a beautiful site surrounded by paddy
fields and villages about 20km outside of Madurai. It
takes about an hour to bike there from the UW Program
House, two hours if you stop to take pictures of
interesting insects and plants along the way.
Gandhian Activist off-season, the retreat and training
center allows folks like us to stay. Luckily Rachel and
Sekar have the connections and know how to organize such
a visit. We (me and the foresaid studyin' cohorts)
utilized CESCI as our central headquarters for the week.
We ate there and slept over, the whole bit. Each morning
we biked out to different villages and talk to local
folks as a kind of introduction to fieldwork research
(much more on my village, Vembarali later). We had the
afternoons free and most evenings had a planned lecture
or activity. The relaxing week provided exactly the
reflection time my over-stimulated brain needed. I hope
you enjoy the photos I took while I was there.
more information about CESCI: