James Courtright is exploring how Fulani societies across West Africa—the largest pastoralist community in the world—are responding to climate change, discriminatory governments, increasing jihadist activity and evolving dynamics within Fulani societies. James grew up between East Africa and the United States. He graduated from Denison University in 2012 and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Kolda, Senegal for three years during which he lived with a Fulani family and worked in community agriculture. He then moved to Dakar and wrote about human rights, the environment and migration for NPR, The Christian Science Monitor and Roads & Kingdoms, among other publications. He graduated from Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs in May 2020 with a concentration in Human Rights and Humanitarian Policy, after which he returned to West Africa to work with Gambian civil society alongside the country’s truth commission.
Dispatches from James Courtright
- Millennium-old institutions and beliefs bring order to places usually associated with chaos and violence.
- They are also deepening the country’s social divisions and economic decline.
- An economic embargo is complicating the country’s deadliest local leadership conflict.