single link interactive map
February 24, 2012 5:52 AM   Subscribe

An interactive map of the celebrity recolonization of Africa. (via)
posted by infini (30 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
It doesn't give credit to Don Cheadle for doing Hotel Rwanda.

With an omission like that, one wonders exactly how complete this little exercise really is.
posted by valkyryn at 5:56 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yeah, nice idea but the data seems a bit sparse. And it probably ought to be a wiki or something.

Also, someone should draw a version of the Cecil Rhodes Colossus with one of the big-ticket celebrity philanthropists, Oprah or Bono or Bill Gates or something.
posted by XMLicious at 6:00 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Gwyneth Paltrow: I Am African
posted by Trurl at 6:01 AM on February 24, 2012


And infini, if the "nomorefppsonthispromise" tag is you promising not to do FPPs, no need! I think you're especially qualified to do FPPs on this sort of stuff.
posted by XMLicious at 6:02 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


malware ad on site
posted by thelonius at 6:04 AM on February 24, 2012


malware ad on site

Mother Jones?

Gwyneth Paltrow: I Am African
posted by Trurl


*hurls*

Sorry Trurl, nothing personal to you, just in the middle of composing a long rant on my own blog on the problems of this sort of thing continuing even as parts of Sub sahara emerge as some of the fastest growing GDPs in the world. You know, sort of like "Customers should be kings; not beneficiaries and paupers" or maybe "The customer is the king; the beneficiary will remain a pauper". *ponders*
posted by infini at 6:18 AM on February 24, 2012


Does cynicism on the internet know no bounds at all? Do we deride everyone trying to do something worth a shit with their celebrity or power? Even if there are issues with paternalism, it's better than hitting up a crack pipe at the Hollywood Hilton. Color me annoyed by this sort of belittling.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:18 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


Poor Togo and Benin. The never get any respect.
posted by clvrmnky at 6:18 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yeah, what's with Akon sticking his nose in Senegalese affairs?
posted by Jehan at 6:19 AM on February 24, 2012


Gwyneth Paltrow: I Am African

Surely there has never been a more blatant trademark violation? Adam Ant needs to make a call to his lawyer, stat.

And even when you're healthy, and your colour schemes delight
Down below those dandy clothes, you're just a shade too white.

posted by Meatbomb at 6:22 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Congo sill up for grabs. Anyone want to start a pool?
posted by jquinby at 6:23 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Mother Jones?

THis is a thing now - someone complained about them doing this yesterday. Popunder ad with javascript dialog: PLEASE CONSIDER CLEANING YOUR MAC. I assume that's malware, and I will not visit their website. Maybe someone should inform the media.
posted by thelonius at 6:27 AM on February 24, 2012


Congo sill up for grabs. Anyone want to start a pool?

They'd go mad with power and we'd end up having to send a second celebrity to kill the first. (NOTE TO SELF: workshop this -- it's screenplay material)
posted by condour75 at 6:32 AM on February 24, 2012 [7 favorites]


Is there really anything wrong with famous people raising awareness or giving to charity? I don't get it.
posted by timsneezed at 6:32 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


I feel like #2 in the via link is a good example of some of the unintended outcomes. The rest of my feelings are still be composed and written elsewhere with citations.
posted by infini at 6:35 AM on February 24, 2012


condour75, you magnificent bastard.
posted by jquinby at 6:35 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Joel Madden is the CAR is sending me into conniptions.
Wronging Rights suggests Josh Groban for all Guineas and Oprah for Lesotho.

To timsneezed and Devils Rancher: bad aid does a whole lot of damage on the ground. Many of the celebrities advocate for policies and programs that destroy local industries (like with shoe donation), are inappropriate for context, and are directly contrary to everything we know about effective aid. It harms rather than helps, and also is ridiculously self-aggrandizing and condescending to actual people who have wills and likes and dislikes and choices. Using "Africans" as props for your own charitable impulses is a poor way to do good indeed.
posted by quadrilaterals at 6:40 AM on February 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


Is there really anything wrong with famous people raising awareness or giving to charity? I don't get it.

Haters gonna hate
posted by Renoroc at 6:46 AM on February 24, 2012


Isn't Akon Senegalese by descent? Doesn't seem fair to list him here with the other folks; I mean, you can hardly call re-colonization if the kid actually belongs there.
posted by the cydonian at 6:48 AM on February 24, 2012


It harms rather than helps, and also is ridiculously self-aggrandizing and condescending to actual people who have wills and likes and dislikes and choices.

I can see that. Still, just making fun of them seems counterproductive, too. The next guy who comes along with a soapbox to stand on and a crowd willing to listen might just not bother at all, instead of perhaps doing the right thing. Obviously it's hilariously reductive to just say "Africa needs aid," but huge swaths of the continent could benefit from some form of restitution form their formoer colonizers -- the Congo basin is a damn mess -- I hardly know where to begin personally, but the suffering there is real.

I give money to Shelterbox & Doctors Without Borders, personally, as they seem to be unafraid to dive into crisis areas to help with immediate need, regardless of the continent.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:55 AM on February 24, 2012


This is really weird. The other night I had a dream where at one point I was walking past a TV, and there was a PBS news magazine show (maybe Frontline?) that was about Eddie Deezen working diligently to stop corruption in the government of Comoros, and somehow he became extremely top-tier, A-list famous because of it.
posted by chambers at 6:57 AM on February 24, 2012


Devil's Rancher, please don't misunderstand this but what do you imagine would be the impact and reaction if wellmeaning celebrities from a different continent highlighted the plight of the economically challenged and unemployed in Detroit, for example? Or swooped in, (as they actually did) to help out after Katrina?
posted by infini at 7:03 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Devil's Rancher - You're absolutely right that the suffering there is real, and you're donating to some great organizations. (Not familiar with Shelterbox, but MSF is great.) But the reason MSF and others like them are great is because they do their research on the ground and hire experts in the field, who also have a good understanding of the situation, both in terms of technical expertise and history, etc. However, celebrities often don't do this back work - so we get people like Madonna taking a child with parents out of the country to raise (when people who work with youth in Malawi could have said that "orphanages" often don't just house orphans, and connected her to networks that would allow her to support the child's family keeping the child, or helping fund teachers in villages to help children), rather than integrated programs that help.

Good intentions are great, and I don't besmirch those who work to the best of their ability to help. But good intentions are not enough, and when those with power, privilege, money, and time to spare choose instead to take the easy route in a very complicated situation - that's when I get mad.
posted by quadrilaterals at 7:22 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


No love for Zambia? I know a few people from there, and the poverty and suffering is just awful, certainly on par with the surrounding countries. Publicity is important. Most people have heard of Sudan, Somalia even if they don't have a good handle on what's going on there, but I can't recall reading a single mainstream news story about Zambia in the last ... I don't know how long.
posted by desjardins at 7:24 AM on February 24, 2012


what do you imagine would be the impact and reaction if wellmeaning celebrities from a different continent highlighted the plight of the economically challenged and unemployed in Detroit, for example? Or swooped in, (as they actually did) to help out after Katrina?

I am going to assume it would be most likely completely ignored, since we in the U.S. are not generally familiar with other countries' celebrities or news outlets. (For example, Britons may not believe it, but if Katie Price walked around on the street in Hollywood, most American tourists she encountered wouldn't have the faintest clue who that pneumatically-enhanced lady is.)

And speaking from my own experience helping out after Katrina, the foreign aid we did receive was as likely as not shelved somewhere; I have some great pictures of a community center in rural western Louisiana with a stack of unused kitchen kits stamped "FROM YOUR FRIENDS IN THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA" sitting against a wall, a year after the storm.
posted by psoas at 7:29 AM on February 24, 2012


o timsneezed and Devils Rancher: bad aid does a whole lot of damage on the ground. Many of the celebrities advocate for policies and programs that destroy local industries (like with shoe donation), are inappropriate for context, and are directly contrary to everything we know about effective aid. It harms rather than helps, and also is ridiculously self-aggrandizing and condescending to actual people who have wills and likes and dislikes and choices. Using "Africans" as props for your own charitable impulses is a poor way to do good indeed.

Seems like a lot of generalizations. There probably are some celebrities who are merely looking for photo ops to improve their image but there's no reason to believe that all of them or even the majority have unsavory ulterior motives.

Also it is it really the case that most of the aid they give is harmful or are you just picking on a few bad ideas? Maybe they want to do good but they're just misinformed.
posted by timsneezed at 7:33 AM on February 24, 2012


wellmeaning celebrities from a different continent highlighted the plight of the economically challenged and unemployed in Detroit, for example? Or swooped in, (as they actually did) to help out after Katrina?

I really don't guess I'd be bothered, unless their work was actually counterproductive. N.O. after Katrina in particular needed an international response, since our internal one was so damn poor. Does it matter where the help comes from, if it's helpful and you need it? Borders are sometimes stupid things, when they cause jingoism and pride that get in the way of progress. "How can person from other side of [imaginary line] possibly presume to know [insert plight here]?" I mean, yeah, get educated about causes you want to espouse, and make sure the help is wanted, and focused, but I'm not going to just sneer at Bono for working his ass off.
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:35 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Devil's Rancher, please don't misunderstand this but what do you imagine would be the impact and reaction if wellmeaning celebrities from a different continent highlighted the plight of the economically challenged and unemployed in Detroit, for example? Or swooped in, (as they actually did) to help out after Katrina?

http://www.topgear.com/uk/videos/southern-discomfort
posted by 256 at 11:24 AM on February 24, 2012


Congo still up for grabs. Anyone want to start a pool?

So the Metafilter Celebrity African Adventure is to go to the Congo to build a pool? Olympic sized? A baby pool? Maybe a splash pad?
posted by lstanley at 1:46 PM on February 24, 2012


Does cynicism on the internet know no bounds at all? Do we deride everyone trying to do something worth a shit with their celebrity or power? Even if there are issues with paternalism, it's better than hitting up a crack pipe at the Hollywood Hilton. Color me annoyed by this sort of belittling.

Oh come on! if they were REALLY good people, then they wouldn't be mucking about with Africa, they'd be commenting on Metafilter instead!
posted by happyroach at 4:50 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


« Older Z: I have a house in Farnborough Z: help me get h...  |  The United States Court of App... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments