582 posts tagged with africa.
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"The soil is our bank."

African land reform, plot by plot, may be the foundation for solving so much else – from famine to poverty to genocide.
posted by lullaby on Feb 3, 2010 - 6 comments

Far Blue Horizon

Morocco by Motorbike. The perfect escape for a lazy weekend day. Just watch out for ancient tombs. [more inside]
posted by Eideteker on Jan 30, 2010 - 10 comments

The Vice Guide to Liberia

The Vice Guide to Liberia (trailer & parts 1-4 of 8). [more inside]
posted by gman on Jan 23, 2010 - 56 comments

This youth, it bulges?

More than 15 years again Robert Kaplan wrote in his occasionally prescient essay, "Though Islam is spreading in West Africa, it is being hobbled by syncretization with animism: this makes new converts less apt to become anti-Western extremists...." Glossing over the omission that Islam has been in West Africa for centuries, the recent exploding underpants incident has cemented the idea that a form of violent religious extremism has found root in West Africa, leaving many to wonder why and how. Some argue it's the inevitable result of dangerous demographics.
posted by Panjandrum on Jan 20, 2010 - 17 comments

the trouble with cabinda

Cabinda is an exclave of Angola with extensive oil fields and a troubled history. Left out of the negotiations that granted Angola independence from the Portuguese, separatist movements in Cabinda have a history nearly as long as that of modern Angola itself. These movements are in the news again, thanks to an attack on the Togolese national football team ahead of the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations that has other clubs calling their players back, Cabinda losing the right to host matches, and South Africa reassuring the world that security there will be adequate ahead of this summer's World Cup.
posted by jackflaps on Jan 9, 2010 - 11 comments

John Storm Roberts, 1936-2009

John Storm Roberts, 1936-2009. A magnificent scholar and record producer, and the author of great classics including The Latin Tinge and Black Music of Two Worlds,, and the founder of Original Music, John Storm Roberts passed away at the age of 73 back on Nov. 29. Few figures have had such a profoundly intertwined influence on both musical scholarship and popular musical culture. [more inside]
posted by fourcheesemac on Jan 8, 2010 - 4 comments

Love, sayang, pyaar, bhalo bashi, amore...

All you need is love - from 156 countries, all at the same time. Join in the chorus; each video leads to a 5-cent donation from Starbucks to the RED Global Fund for AIDS in Africa.
posted by divabat on Jan 2, 2010 - 44 comments

"How fortunate are the dead" -- Dennis Brutus dead at 85

Noted anti-apartheid activist and poet Dennis Brutus has died. [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan on Dec 28, 2009 - 11 comments

To dye for

Best known as an Indonesian handicraft, batik is a distinctive technique for textiles that has been used for millennia and can be found as far away as Egypt, Ghana, China and India. An integral part of daily life in Java, batik has spread around the world as a wellknown artform as well as clothing. From its hippy heyday to the smart couture outfits of the Singapore Girl, batik is still daily wear for many and the equivalent of black tie in the ASEAN. [more inside]
posted by infini on Dec 19, 2009 - 13 comments

Picturing Climate Change

Ahead of the global climate talks, nine photographers from the photo agency NOOR photographed climate stories from around the world. Their goal: to document some of the causes and consequences, from deforestation to changing sea levels, as well as the people whose lives and jobs are part of that carbon culture. Warming threatens lifestyle of Russian herders | Refugees flee drought, war in East Africa | Greenland’s shrinking ice hurts natives [more inside]
posted by netbros on Dec 10, 2009 - 3 comments

The Ultimate Dr. Sir Warrior

Forty years ago, just after the Biafran War, Nigeria was home to a cultural boom that paralleled its skyrocketing oil revenues. These heady days not only produced afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti, but also, in the genre of music called highlife, created a star known as the Ultimate Dr. Sir Warrior (born Christogonus Ezebuiro Obinna) a member of the nebulous Oriental Brothers International Band. Listen to the music of Dr. Sir Warrior and the Oriental Brothers International Band. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco on Dec 10, 2009 - 15 comments

Circle of death :(

In 20 years, according to one estimate, wild lions could be extinct in Kenya. [more inside]
posted by allkindsoftime on Nov 24, 2009 - 38 comments

The Economist: The World in 2010

In 2010, Obama will have a miserable year, NATO may lose in Afghanistan, the UK gets a regime change, China needs to chill, India's factories will overtake its farms, Europe risks becoming an irrelevant museum, the stimulus will need an exit strategy, the G20 will see a challenge from the "G2", African football will unite Korea, conflict over natural resources will grow, Sarkozy will be unloved and unrivalled, the kids will come together to solve the world's problems (because their elders are unable), technology will grow ever more ubiquitous, we'll all charge our phones via USB, MBAs will be uncool, the Space Shuttle will be put to rest, and Somalia will be the worst country in the world. And so the Tens begin.

The Economist: The World in 2010. [more inside]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Nov 14, 2009 - 60 comments

A Walk to Beautiful

The documentary A Walk to Beautiful, follows five women in Ethiopia suffering from fistula, isolated from their villages and some from their families, seeking treatment at one of the few charity clinics. It can be viewed online at the PBS NOVA site. Dr. Catherine Hamlin, who runs the hospital in Addis Ababa, is interviewed here. There's also been a couple of recent articles on fistula: one from Nicholas Kristof who's been one of the most prominent voices on this issue, a piece by Kate Harding, and an older piece where Abby Frucht describes living with fistula in a developed country with a supportive family. For those inclined to donate, links to charities can be found in the Kristof op-ed. Other Metafilter posts on fistula: 1, 2
posted by BigSky on Nov 2, 2009 - 14 comments

Not a Halloween Post.

The Maskatorium: hundreds of masks collected from around the world over the past 20 years.
posted by gman on Oct 30, 2009 - 6 comments

The James Koetting Ghana Field Recordings

The James Koetting Ghana Field Recordings has 142 reels of Ghanaian music, almost all of which have more than one track, collected by ethnomusicologist James Koetting. There is a glossary of musical terms should you want to know a bit more about Ghanaian music and Koetting's notebooks should you want to know a whole lot more. All the music is wonderful but here are a few that stood out to me. Here are two tracks featuring postal workers whistling over a rhythm beat with scissors and stampers. Flute and drum ensemble. Brass band blues. And finally, twenty teenage girls singing over some nice rhythms. [requires RealPlayer]
posted by Kattullus on Oct 6, 2009 - 35 comments

The Doers Club

The Doers Club
posted by ryoshu on Sep 30, 2009 - 14 comments

UK Asylum Seekers: Let The Right Ones In

The Home Office, the UK government department responsible for immigration control, has initiated a program to test the DNA from of potential asylum seekers in an attempt to confirm their true nationalities. The initial program is a six-month pilot limited to claimants arriving from the Horn of Africa. The program, currently using forensic samples provided on a voluntary basis, could potentially expand to other nationalities if successful. The Home Office spokeswoman said ancestral DNA testing would not be used alone but would be combined with language analysis, investigative interviewing techniques and other recognized forensic disciplines, but many are decrying the "deeply flawed" program, from refugee support groups to scientists in the genetic forensics fields (via). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 30, 2009 - 55 comments

albino magic

Albinos often face mistrust and discrimination, perhaps because they tend to be portrayed as evil in popular culture. But in Tanzania and Burundi, weird delusions that albinos have magical powers mean that they are actually being hunted down, murdered and dismembered to harvest their supposedly magical body parts. One group of albino kids are trying to spread some sense by forming their own "magic" sports team.
posted by w0mbat on Sep 27, 2009 - 19 comments

Somalia's refugee camps

Inside Somalia. Mike Thomson of the BBC makes a rare visit to the refugee camps in one of the most dangerous places on earth.
posted by allkindsoftime on Sep 18, 2009 - 11 comments

To Cape Town..

The Big Africa Cycle. Peter Gostelow is cycling from Dorset, England to Cape Town to raise funds for The Against Malaria Foundation. And it's not his first big adventure. [more inside]
posted by fire&wings on Aug 28, 2009 - 2 comments

A Whole New Meaning to 'Forefathers.'

The Circumcision v. HIV debate rages on. [previously and previously-er and previously-er still] The debate has been rekindled due to new findings. It is expected to be one of the main topics during the CDC's National HIV Prevention Conference this week, as the CDC is considering endorsing routine circumcision. The American Academy of Pediatrics is also considering revising their circumcision policy, thus making it covered under Medicaid. Naturally, there is a lot of criticism of the evidence. In related news, it appears that there is a modicum of the so-called 'Birthers' who believe Obama's citizenship can be proven by his penis.
posted by Lutoslawski on Aug 25, 2009 - 378 comments

Alekpehanhou, and the funky moves he inspires

Just in case you were wondering, yes, indeed, it is the people who dance to Zinli music in Benin who have the coolest, freshest dance moves on the planet. Once you get past the extended a cappella intro, and that delicious slow groove kicks in at the 3:26 minute mark, this video will treat you to some of the most undulating funky moves EVAR. Now, whether you wanna try some of these gyrations yourself, or whether you just dig a nice, slow, cooly percolating West African groove for listening, go here for more from singer Alekpehanhou the "Roi du Zinli Rénové". [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Aug 23, 2009 - 16 comments

Cat food.

Welcome to District 9. Director Neill Blomkamp turns his sci-fi short "Alive in Joburg" into a full-length feature film - examining xenophobia in an allegory of Apartheid, set in a slum recalling District 6 of Cape Town in South Africa.
posted by crossoverman on Aug 23, 2009 - 135 comments

A New Approach to Aid

" Under the plan, every citizen, rich or poor, would be entitled to it starting at birth. There would be no poverty test, no conditions and, therefore, no social bureaucracy. And no one would be told what he or she is permitted to do with the money." Promising news from Spiegel Online about a Guaranteed minimum income project in Otjivero, Namibia. (via)
posted by The Whelk on Aug 20, 2009 - 51 comments

Joyous juju from the king

Me Le Se and Dance Medley - live clips of King Sunny Ade and his African Beats in Seattle last month just before being inducted into the AfroPop Hall of Fame. More clips from the show ... [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive on Aug 9, 2009 - 11 comments

Cutthroat Capitalism

WIRED contributing editor Scott Carney interviewed an ocean-going hijacker for his story on the economics of Somali piracy. [more inside]
posted by gman on Jul 28, 2009 - 21 comments

Trees Never Meet

Trees Never Meet is the thoughtful blog of David, a historian of Africa. Though posting has slowed recently, the archives are fascinating. On fitting in; on killing animals as an ex-vegetarian; on Namibian legal history; on "anti-conquests"; on the types of people who have inhabited Namibia since the conquest; on Namibian politics. David also has a fantastic, well-written dream blog.
posted by nasreddin on Jul 22, 2009 - 8 comments

"Genuinely confusing to rapists"

The Worst Date Ever is the new book by Jane Bussmann. She starts as a celebrity journalist in LA and ends up breaking a massive story about the political situation in Uganda from a scary bit of Africa. Ms. Bussmann also wrote the first internet sit-com: The Junkies (parts 1, 2, 3) , and had a hand in South Park, Brass Eye and Jam. The wonderful Sally Phillips directed the Edinburgh stage show that became the book and Chris Morris says it's "Genuinely confusing to rapists". [more inside]
posted by sam and rufus on Jul 15, 2009 - 9 comments

The Humphrey Winterton Collection of East African Photographs: 1860-1960

"This week -- for the first time ever -- a searchable collection of thousands of rare photographs chronicling Europe’s colonization of East Africa becomes available to anyone with an Internet connection anywhere in the world, thanks to the efforts of staff at Northwestern University Library." (press release)
posted by gman on Jul 1, 2009 - 12 comments

All aboard for the Africa Express

A preview version of a 20-minute film following Damon Albarn as he and other western musicians (including Franz Ferdinand and Fatboy Slim) travel to Mali, Nigeria and Congo as part of the Africa Express, a sprawling musical collective collaboration between Africans (including Toumani Diabate, Baaba Maal and Tony Allen) Americans and Europeans. The film includes a visit and concert at The Shrine for last year's Felabration. [more inside]
posted by criticalbill on Jun 19, 2009 - 4 comments

Resi Racey Redux

In the wake of the Resident 5 racism flap (previously), and with the final game released, one of it's chief detractors, N'Gai Croal, talks to its producer, Jun Takeuchi (Part 1, Part 2). Meanwhile industry magazine MVC takes a look at Africa as a games market.
posted by Artw on Jun 12, 2009 - 137 comments

Sure as kilimanjaro rises like olympus above the serengeti

Toto - Africa like you've never heard it before (via)
posted by Christ, what an asshole on Jun 6, 2009 - 137 comments

Sach's Attack

Ad hominem attacks, discreditation and the increasingly shrill attempts to gather support against the rapid popularity of Dambisa Moyo's book "Dead Aid" [recently] are raising the question: Has the time come for 'aging western academics and rock stars' to retire gracefully from the scene? [more inside]
posted by infini on May 25, 2009 - 57 comments

Central and Southern African tribal art and culture

The exceptionally informative and well illustrated Galerie Ezakwantu has great pages on African tribal art, culture and history [due to partial nudity many links NSFW]: African Lip Plugs - Lip Plates; African Currency - African Slave Beads; Jewelry; African Scarification; Thrones and Stools; Shields; Combs; Musical Instruments; Fertility Dolls; Weapons; Zulu Basketry; Contemporary Art; Cups; Tribal Currency; Zulu Ricksha attire; Southern Africa Tribal Migrations; South African Kings and Chiefs. Also some interesting pages on anger about Robert Mugabe; the sale of the gallery owner's property; Cape Dutch Homesteads and blueberry recipes. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on May 17, 2009 - 8 comments

africa fills the void

chimurenga is an art and culture journal out of africa. they do internet radio, too. it's called the Pan African Space Station. and it bumps.
posted by artof.mulata on May 7, 2009 - 8 comments

Elephant Diary, Day One: Rolled in mud. Considered meaning of life.

Dame Daphne Sheldrick runs an orphanage in Kenya. For elephants. The orphanage has been the focus of a report on 60 Minutes and a special called "The Elephant Diaries" on BBC1. At the orphanage, elephants are taught skills they will need to know in the wild, including how to play football.
posted by grapefruitmoon on Apr 26, 2009 - 11 comments

Today's yards just aren't as exciting.

The Merkel brothers are the grandsons of steam car makers and sons of an African art collector, and each have carried forward the love of collecting and an interest in cars from the previous generations. Henry Merkel is a recognized White expert, who continues to share knowledge of his family's productions and his knowledge of White steam cars has been published. Ben Merkel focused on collecting Checkered Cabs, and has has a love for peaceful rural junkyards. The youngest grandson of Walter White is Tom Merkel, and his love for collecting old cars outstrips his brothers by miles (print view). Somewhere in the Cuyama Valley, just outside of Los Padres National Forest land is his "car garden," which is also where the snowman that once adorned Santa Claus Lane now resides. His other love is 91+ year old cabin, which he indicates is "Santa Barbara's oldest cabin!" and a "Folk Art Magic Museum!" on the signs around the property, but which the Forest Service wants to tear down. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 21, 2009 - 6 comments

Life Among the Africans in India

Sidi or Siddi is a "community of the descendants of African slaves and seamen, the ancestors of the Sidis came to India and Pakistan through sea trade with East Africa and the Persian Gulf around the 12th century." The slave trade between India and Africa predates the more infamous transatlantic slave trade by at least six centuries. They have a rich history which included controlling the only fort never to fall against the efforts of the British, Dutch and the Mughals. They have now, however, fallen into hard times . [more inside]
posted by Lucubrator on Apr 21, 2009 - 11 comments

Township got soul

Motownship, the combination of Cape Town township music, traditional African instruments and motown tunes, is the topic of this Radio 4 documentary. While purists - both of the African music and motown persuasion - may think this is just a gimmick, it is hard not to have a smile on your face when you listen to the tunes on Abavuki's album Africa Got Soul. What is even more amazing is the background of these musicians - kids who grew up in one of the most deprived townships in South Africa, Langa. To check out the band for yourself, see them playing at the legendary Mama Africa club, via youtube (this is not a motown tune from the album).
posted by Megami on Apr 11, 2009 - 10 comments

The Eighth Wonder of the World

3D laser scanning offers a fly-through view of the Eighth Wonder of the World. Carved directly into volcanic bedrock, the churches of Lalibela were built during the Zagwe Dynasty (1137-1270). YouTube video of the church and local villagers.
posted by desjardins on Apr 9, 2009 - 11 comments

Women Are Heroes Phase Next

Graffiti Project in Kenya Slums — more than a year after he took the original pictures, French photo artist JR has returned to Kibera, Kenya. He was reunited with the women who had accepted to be part of his WOMEN project at the end of 2007 (previously). 2000 square meters of Kibera slum rooftops have been covered with photos of their eyes and faces. Most of the women will have their own photos on their own rooftop and the material used is water resistant so that the photo itself will protect the fragile houses in the heavy rain season. They are on view from the railway line that passes above them, and will be visible for Google Earth. (via Africa.Visual_Media)
posted by netbros on Apr 8, 2009 - 11 comments

AIDS Prevention Strategies in Africa

According to Senior Harvard AIDS Prevention Researcher Dr. Edward Green, condoms not only are not helping to prevent the AIDS crisis, but are actually making the problem worse.
posted by Roach on Mar 22, 2009 - 47 comments

To Help? or To Hinder?

"The function of aid is not to make us feel better about ourselves; it is to promote development, and if a well-informed African tells us that we are inadvertently having the opposite effect, we had better take heed".
Time to stop aid for Africa? An argument against. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco on Mar 10, 2009 - 78 comments

Black and White Moors

"The Beydanes, also known as White Moors, are the ruling caste in Mauritania. They are Arab Berber tribesmen whose ancestors established control in the seventeenth century. The Haratin, also known as Black Moors, are the descendants of black West Africans conquered and enslaved by the Beydanes centuries ago." from the New Yorker story, A Slave in New York, about a former slave who escaped in 1978, came to live in America and now works with the American Anti-Slavery Group. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Feb 6, 2009 - 25 comments

AIDS woo

Yet more AIDS woo in Africa. First, Thabo Mbeki's AIDS policy lead to an estimated 300 000 additional deaths in South Africa. Now, magic water peddler Jeremy Sherr proposes testing homeopathic remedies for AIDS with two groups, one group on ARV and one on homeopathy, as "Placebo treatment is considered unethical in AIDS" (note: archived link from here via here) . [more inside]
posted by fatfrank on Jan 16, 2009 - 28 comments

Fighting boys, strong men and gorillas

At nightfall youth gangs transform the streets of Kinshasa's townships into arenas of the fight. Although many of these boys and young men are trained in foreign fighting styles such as judo, jujitsu and karate, in the public clashes between the fighting groups, these boys and young men perform mukumbusu. This fighting style, inspired and based on the gorilla, was invented during the last decade of colonialism, and is an original mixture of a traditional Mongo wrestling practice, libanda, and Asian and Western fighting practices. An essay from Edinburgh University's Center of African Studies (PDF - or accessmylibrary link) [more inside]
posted by Smedleyman on Jan 13, 2009 - 15 comments

Welcome to Katanga

General Laurent Nkunda is a Tutsi warlord in Katanga who was recently interviewed by the Huffington Post. The BBC believe he is nothing more than your standard African rebel with a long list of atrocities to his name. An opinion supported by the UN and some human rights groups. The War Nerd has come to his defense, however, suggesting that he's just angered the UN by refusing to disarm and allow the Hutu "refugees" from the Rwandan Genocide to terrorize the lands under his control. [more inside]
posted by Pseudology on Jan 11, 2009 - 8 comments

"Let's go to Africa and elope!" "Okay!"

Two German kids attempt to head to Africa and elope, bringing one's sister with them. They're five and six.
posted by divabat on Jan 6, 2009 - 58 comments

glimpses of the African Rock n' Roll Years

Clips from the BBC documentary, The African Rock n' Roll Years - Part 1 l Part 2 l Part 3 l Part 4 l Part 5 l Part 6 - a six-part series mixing interviews with key artists, concert footage and news archives, the series examines and explains the "styles that make up the continent's music, and the political and social pressures that led to their development." BBC documentary details. Found in YouTube member, Duncanzibar's, good collection of mostly African music videos. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Dec 30, 2008 - 9 comments

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