643 posts tagged with africa.
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African and African American Studies: Introduction to Wakanda

"T’Challa emerged as the fictional representation of those countless dreams denied; the unbroken manhood that Ossie Davis famously invoked after the assassination of Malcolm X. Wakanda symbolized the dreams of black utopias like Ethiopia and South Africa that had grown as the Black Freedom Struggle grew over the twentieth century. In this moment when superheroes become a way to explore contemporary anxieties about activism and authority, the Black Panther provides an opportunity for global audiences to study the traditions of black nationalism, Pan-Africanism, and the variety of African indigenous cultures. Dr. Walter Greason (Monmouth University) took a few minutes to suggest a collaborative exploration of these influences" in the Wakanda Syllabus.
posted by ChuraChura on Jun 19, 2016 - 6 comments

Mumford and Sons meet Baaba Maal, Beatenberg and The Very Best

Arena-folk rockers Mumford and Sons toured in South Africa earlier this year, where they took two days to record new music. The result is their Johannesburg EP (YT playlist with live and studio tracks), with Senegalese singer and guitarist Baaba Maal (documentary playlist), South African pop trio Beatenberg (playlist of live videos), and the team of Malawian singer Esau Mwamwaya with British production/DJ duo Radioclit as The Very Best (their original mixtape). More music from the collaborators inside. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jun 18, 2016 - 9 comments

Bera, ek Club Sandwich aur ek Chota Peg lao, jaldi!

If you ever had the dal tadka or the Club Sandwich and wondered who to thank, you may want to look at our Colonial Rulers and their second big gift: the Dak Bungalow.
More on colonial food from the British Raj. Recipes. Old recipes. Controversy in Portland. What came back Home. Comparisons. Hang on, deliciousness aside, what is a Dak Bungalow?
posted by infini on Jun 12, 2016 - 7 comments

The Curious History of “Tribal” Prints

How the Dutch peddle Indonesian-inspired designs to West Africa. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on May 27, 2016 - 10 comments

I am told that people kill albinos and chop their body parts.

In / Visibility - "They have not been registered at birth.
Similarly, they do not die, rather, they 'vanish.' There are no graves of albinos in cemeteries — people would come and steal the bones."
.
In neighbouring Malawi, the UN warns Witchcraft Superstitions could lead to 'Total Extinction' for Albinos.
Last Year Tanzanian albino children mutilated for use in witchcraft received treatment in the US. Progress is slow combatting violence and discrimination.
(Previously 1; 2. and the quote - dated 1950)
posted by adamvasco on May 5, 2016 - 12 comments

When my anger is expressed through dance

When my anger is expressed through dance. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on May 5, 2016 - 6 comments

Farewell to a Congolese music legend

One of Africa's most well known and influential musicians, and an international style icon, Congolese singer Papa Wemba died suddenly during a performance in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, on April 24, at age 66. Aside from the video clips contained within this NPR obituary, I'd recommend the entertaining feature film from 1987 starring Papa Wemba, La Vie est Belle.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Apr 28, 2016 - 15 comments

Do the Kenyan hustle and the Nigerian hip twirl

“Many of the Africans entrepreneurs I encounter represent the elite of their society,” Burfield told me. “They have received world-class educations, but aren’t interested in following in the family business. When combined with members of the African diaspora starting to return home, and ex-pats looking for the big new problems to tackle, most people would be amazed by how many entrepreneurs I encounter in Africa did their undergrad in great institutions around the world, or are self-taught from online courses and hackathons here. These are world-class entrepreneurs.
posted by infini on Apr 14, 2016 - 7 comments

When The Corporations Exploiting 3rd World People Are Also 3rd World

The face of corporate exploitation in the third world is increasingly local, and thus even more invisible than usual. Most land in Africa is technically owned by "local chiefs," and bribery and collusion between chiefs, state and corporations are dispossessing huge numbers of rural families of their land, health and livelihoods.
posted by blankdawn on Apr 12, 2016 - 5 comments

Wakaliwood!

the DIY action film studio from the slums of Uganda that took over the Internet and made it plausible for anyone in the world to become an East African kung fu movie commando. [more inside]
posted by Hypatia on Apr 7, 2016 - 5 comments

Comes highly recommended by the Lagosians

Is Lagos the Most Dangerous Party City on the Planet?
posted by infini on Mar 27, 2016 - 44 comments

Basics

Wikimedia and Facebook have given Angolans free access to their websites, but not to the rest of the internet. So, naturally, Angolans have started hiding pirated movies and music in Wikipedia articles and linking to them on closed Facebook groups, creating a totally free and clandestine file sharing network in a country where mobile internet data is extremely expensive.
Vice
posted by infini on Mar 24, 2016 - 56 comments

Beyond the languages I claim as my own

Jalada, a pan-African writer's collective, has just published their first Translation issue. Thirty three writers from across fourteen African countries came together to create this work of art, an entire issue showcasing a previously unpublished story by Ngugi wa Thiong’o. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by infini on Mar 22, 2016 - 7 comments

The mighty medieval capital now lost without trace

This is the story of a lost medieval city you’ve probably never heard about. Benin City, originally known as Edo, was once the capital of a pre-colonial African empire located in what is now southern Nigeria.
From the Series : Stories of cities
posted by adamvasco on Mar 18, 2016 - 23 comments

Nigerian Army couple who are both generals

How we met, married and coped with war
posted by infini on Mar 14, 2016 - 3 comments

8,000 vintage Afropop songs, streaming online

An amazing treasure trove of 8,000 Afropop tracks. The British Library just released this archive as part of their first online sound project within their Endangered Archives Programme (EAP). The recordings are from the state-supported Syliphone label and were released between 1958 to 1984. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Mar 8, 2016 - 24 comments

Chubiiline

5th-grader Nigerian-American Ify Ufele channeled the bullying she got for her size towards designing and making Chubiiline, a line of plus-size fashion with African influences.
posted by divabat on Feb 14, 2016 - 15 comments

Imperial History and Film Culture

Having fallen down the rabbit hole of British colonial cinema history, I thought to share some of the wonderful discoveries with you.
posted by infini on Feb 9, 2016 - 3 comments

Red Africa

The Calvert Journal's Special Report: Red Africa: When international socialism met the developing world [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Feb 6, 2016 - 6 comments

Ninja Eagle on Stilts - The Secretary Bird

Secretary birds can be found striding through the grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa. They cut a striking and unmistakeable profile, with light grey bodies, black wing tips and shorts, a red mask, and a crest of black quills. The latter, according to one dubious-sounding hypothesis, look like the quill pens that secretaries once tucked behind their ears—hence the bird's name. A more plausible alternative is that “secretary” is a bastardization of the Arabic “saqr-et-tair” for “hunter bird.” [more inside]
posted by narancia on Jan 26, 2016 - 12 comments

By Wambui Mwangi

Silence Is a Woman
posted by infini on Jan 15, 2016 - 4 comments

The Preservation Of A Nation

Robbie Judkins visits Tanzania to witness first hand the attempt to save a quarter of a century of musical history from oblivion. Listen to an exclusive mix of tracks newly digitized by the Tanzania Heritage Project
posted by infini on Jan 13, 2016 - 5 comments

Habibi Funk

Fadoul et Les Privileges, Morocco's answer to James Brown.
posted by ChuraChura on Jan 4, 2016 - 6 comments

Selling Solar Like Cellphones

The Solar Company Making a Profit on Poor Africans
posted by StrikeTheViol on Dec 31, 2015 - 22 comments

Goodnight, gorillas!

Sleepy gorillas make their nests in Kahuzi-Biega National Park. You can visit these gorillas by going on a virtual gorilla trek in Democratic Republic of Congo!
posted by ChuraChura on Dec 22, 2015 - 9 comments

Radical Acceptance in the Pearl of Africa

Cleopatra Kambugu was outed as a trans woman following the passage of extremely punitive anti-gay bills in Uganda. She, her boyfriend, and her family are the subject of a series of short documentaries about life in East Africa for openly LGBTQI individuals. "I was born here - a land with beautiful mountains and deep dark forest - a country blessed with diversity in ethnicity, gender, flora and fauna. Yet in all this richness, as a people and as a nation, we still struggle to recognize and appreciate this diversity." links and videos contain some disturbing transphobic and homophobic rhetoric and violence. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Dec 17, 2015 - 4 comments

Outsourcing, exploitation and the new reality of work

As you read this story you will recognise that the economic system that continues to keep black people very, very poor in this country has been broken for so long, and the private sector has been so strong for so long, that we have a vast imbalance that has been allowed to flourish unchecked. We the people have not been demanding when it comes to scrutiny of corporate conduct. [...] This story – this one you will read about Coca-Cola - is part of a rich canon. It exists because of First and Gqabi and Nxumalo and Jaffer and countless others.
via [more inside]
posted by infini on Dec 10, 2015 - 2 comments

Polly-glots

Hundreds of languages are spoken in Nigeria - so which one do you teach a parrot?
posted by ChuraChura on Dec 2, 2015 - 22 comments

You won't get a better collection of AfroSFF

Nigerian AfroSFF writer Wole Talabi shares links to his favourite 10 short stories of 2015 with a short intro.
posted by infini on Nov 29, 2015 - 11 comments

South African Safari time lapse

Gorgeous time-lapse video of South Africa and its wildlife. [more inside]
posted by mudpuppie on Nov 20, 2015 - 14 comments

“Rain the Color of Blue With a Little Red in It”

"A revolutionary story of guitars, motorcycles, cell phones – and the music of a new generation” is how director Christopher Kirkley describes his West African re-imagining of Purple Rain. Set in the Saharan city of Agadez in Niger, Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai (Akounak for short) is a visually sumptuous and musically thrilling movie that works splendidly with or without the Purple Rain mythos. But riffing on Prince’s tale locates Purple Rain’s universal heartbeat
posted by infini on Nov 15, 2015 - 10 comments

The Chanel of Africa

As the main supplier of fashion prints to nearly half a continent, the textile company has continued to dominate that fashion scene there for almost 170 years. How’d that happen? Rooted in European colonialism and a testament to African ingenuity, creativity, and cultural pride; it’s a surprising story
posted by infini on Oct 30, 2015 - 28 comments

The biggest raise our mothers will ever receive

On Friday, South African university students achieved a historic victory; after a week's protest they ensured there would be no fee increases at universities in 2016. This has been led by women. [more inside]
posted by infini on Oct 24, 2015 - 9 comments

"This is how they protect me."

"Every society struggles to care for people with mental illness. In parts of West Africa, where psychiatry is virtually unknown, the chain is often a last resort for desperate families who cannot control a loved one in the grip of psychosis. Religious retreats, known as prayer camps, set up makeshift psychiatric wards, usually with prayer as the only intervention." NYTimes. Links contain upsetting images and video. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Oct 11, 2015 - 6 comments

Good women seldom make history.

This is Professor Wangari Maathai. The first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. The first Kenyan woman to earn a doctoral degree. An icon of Kenya’s democratic movement who repeatedly put not just her mind but also her body on the line in order to secure a better future for Kenyans and their natural environment. But Maathai’s standing in Kenya is definitely ambiguous. She is beloved by feminists and environmentalists, and tolerated by everyone else... Women are expected to look backwards on guidance on what it means to be “good” – where “good” is primarily defined by men – but not too good because that makes women less interesting to men. This was not Wangari Maathai.
posted by ChuraChura on Oct 6, 2015 - 5 comments

It's electric

Aby Ngana Diop was a practitioner of taasu (alternately spelled "tassou"), a form of performance poetry practiced by female griots in Senegal. In the 90s, she was "a sought-after performer at the weddings and funerals of the rich and powerful" (according to a tangentially related article from The Verge). In 1994, she released her only widely distributed album, Liital, which fuses traditional taasu with the more modern mbalax, a popular style of Senegalese dance music. It's worth it for the title track alone. [more inside]
posted by escape from the potato planet on Sep 30, 2015 - 6 comments

The Little Prince Only Had Three

Baobab Trees I was not aware that baobab trees grew anyplace but Africa, so it blew my mind to find out that they also live in India and Australia. They were likly introduced by Africans in both cases.
posted by Katjusa Roquette on Sep 24, 2015 - 19 comments

I am Fundi

"I Am Fundi" is a short documentary depicting the education system in Uganda and the measures that the organization, Fundibots, is taking to create change. Victor, a Fundi teacher with a challenging past, is changing the future of Uganda by preparing and instilling excitement for science in young children so that when they grow, they will be confident, supported, and prepared for contemporary practices and technological advances.
via
posted by infini on Sep 22, 2015 - 1 comment

The inner life of the fig

The Queen of Trees is a documentary (52 minutes) on the sycomore fig tree, focusing on the intricate mutualism between a fig tree and its fig wasp. Filmmakers Victoria Stone and Mark Deeble spent two years camped out in the Kenyan bush to capture fascinating scenes of life around the sycomore, including inside the figs.
posted by parudox on Sep 13, 2015 - 17 comments

How to Survive a Footnote: AIDS activism in the "after years"

"When protease inhibitors arrived, one era of the AIDS crisis was over. Many stories of the plague years in America end with this victory. Sometimes a coda is appended to acknowledge that the crisis itself isn’t over, referencing ongoing epidemics in Africa and, less often, in black and brown populations in America. What’s often missing from these analyses is an era that I’ve come to think of as the “footnote years” of AIDS activism: a sliver of about five years, from 1996 to 2001, in which a specific urban, queer-identified American activism played a role in changing the global response to HIV, and sought, less successfully, to use this work as a jumping-off point for a broader quest for justice."
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Sep 2, 2015 - 3 comments

Going back to summer in Igboland

“Before the trip, Nigeria was a dim set of associations in my mind: my parent’s stories of their childhood, highlife cassette tapes, dated images from Google searches, negative news headlines, the taste of rice and stew. Going back gave me vivid experiences to call part of my life, to draw from when I talk about the country, my identity, what kinds of people I come from, and the roots of why I do what I do.”
posted by ChuraChura on Sep 2, 2015 - 2 comments

Mapping the beautiful chaos of informal transit

As transit systems go, the matatus in Nairobi exist somewhere between underground gypsy cabs and MTA bus service. The minibuses themselves aren't owned by any government agency. The fares aren't regulated by the city. The routes are vaguely based on a bus network that existed in Nairobi some 30 years ago, but they've since shifted and multiplied and expanded at the region's edges... Riders who navigate the matatu system rely on it in parts, using only the lines they know and the unofficial stops they're sure actually exist. As for the network as a whole – there's never even been a map of it... In the absence of a formal public transit system in Kenya's capital, people have created a comprehensive – if imperfect – one on their own. And now we know that it looks like this. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Aug 27, 2015 - 21 comments

World Jollof Rice Day, you say?

Today is World Jollof Rice Day. Jollof rice is a traditional West African dish, but not a humble one. Subject of #JollofGate, the outraged social media response to chef Jamie Oliver's patently inauthentic recipe, aficionados debate the merits of special ingredients. Others prefer joining the loud brangling online over Ghanaian vs Nigerian Jollof. Regardless of your beliefs, join the world today in celebrating the tasty goodness of this much loved dish.
posted by infini on Aug 22, 2015 - 53 comments

The Village Where Men Are Banned

The Village Where Men Are Banned (and accompanying photos). Julie Bindel at the Guardian writes about the Kenyan village of Umoja, where for 25 years, since the village was founded by survivors of sexual assault, only women and their children have lived.
posted by Stacey on Aug 20, 2015 - 15 comments

you write because no one is coming

An essay somewhat in the spirit of Montaigne that discusses reading and writing, Nigeria and Biafra, bystander reactions to tragedy, an novel I've never read named Half of a Yellow Sun, early Christianity, and more. As is often the case on Crooked Timber, many of the comments are worth reading too.
posted by kingless on Aug 12, 2015 - 2 comments

Why would a tiny dose of estrogen derivative cause infertility, anyway?

Catholic Bishops In Kenya Call For A Boycott Of Polio Vaccines Fearing a UN plot to sterilize the populace with vaccines containing estrogen derivatives, Bishop Philip Anyolo and others have been encouraging others not to immunize their children. [more inside]
posted by Sleeper on Aug 9, 2015 - 47 comments

Game changer

New Ebola vaccine shows 100% success rate in clinical trial. Today the World Health Organization has announced that the rVSV-ZEBOV vaccine had a 100% success rate in preventing onset of the disease if administered within 10 days of exposure (n=4,000). In response to the current outbreak in West Africa that has afflicted over 27,000 and killed over 11,000, this collaborative effort led by the WHO pushed the vaccine through a process that usually takes more than a decade in just 12 months. Official paper from The Lancet here (pdf).
posted by Ufez Jones on Jul 31, 2015 - 23 comments

MOAR Supa Action!!!!

"Who Killed Captain Alex: Uganda's First Action Movie was produced, written, directed, shot, and edited by Nabwana IGG from his home in Wakaliga, Uganda. Made for under $200 - using real blood and a modified car jack for a tripod - the film became a sensation in the slums of Uganda while the trailer went viral in Europe, South America, and the US." [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Jul 27, 2015 - 7 comments

Obama-mania, a political minefield, and changing narratives.

It will be Barack Obama’s first visit to the land of his father as American president and a far cry from a 1988 trip when his luggage got lost. Obama will be visiting only Kenya and Ethiopia. Yet each is the base for two Africa-wide trends. In Ethiopia, he will give a speech at the headquarters of the 54-nation African Union, the main body trying to lift the standards of governance among its members. But the White House appears more focused on Kenya, which is Africa’s center of innovation and host to a global “summit” of entrepreneurs.
posted by Sir Rinse on Jul 23, 2015 - 14 comments

Music always finds a way...

The Banjo Bands of Malawi is a video clip featuring three different performances of a certain strain of folk music from the small African nation. Totally raw and homemade instruments are employed in the service of urgent, percussive music (some of it a bit reminiscent of bluegrass) topped off by tight harmony vocals. What's not to like?
posted by flapjax at midnite on Jul 21, 2015 - 19 comments

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