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The missing minister mystery...

The missing minister mystery...
posted by theemperorhasnoclotheson on Mar 5, 2007 - 3 comments

The Society for Leisure Lovers and Elegant Persons

To be a Sapeur in Kinshasa is to treat every trash-strewn alley or muddy street as a fashion catwalk. Inspired by Congolese rumba star Papa Wemba* and his Société des Ambianceurs et Persons Élégants* (le Sape), urban peacocks cheerfully adopted "Religion Kitembo”, literally the worship of clothes. "The Pope of the Sapes" himself appears to have undergone a conversion since his recent legal troubles. Photo gallery by Héctor Mediavilla. *sound
posted by maryh on Nov 28, 2006 - 21 comments

More Vicious than Rape

"More Vicious than Rape." Thousands of Congolese girls and women, among the hundreds of thousands of rape cases, who have been deliberately harmed following their rape in a particular way with a brutality that staggers the mind. [more inside]
posted by WCityMike on Nov 17, 2006 - 112 comments

The Other Election

The vote count with a death toll in the Democratic Republic of Congo is the other election to watch right now. Joseph Kabila and Jean-Pierre Bemba, both of whom command large private armies say they will accept the results of the poll, though the truth of that remains to be seen. Bemba is implicated in war crimes (previously discussed here); and Kabila's inner circle controls much of the wealth of the DRC. Either way, a successful election would be better than a return to the war that killed 4 million people. And contrary to the paltry coverage the Congo receives in the news, what happens there matters to the rest of the world. But will the election results change the lives of Congolese civilians?
posted by cal71 on Nov 8, 2006 - 8 comments

Is it really time to upgrade your mobile phone?

Dead Ringers: the Science Museum asks us the question "should we upgrade our mobile phone?" "No" and "no" say the Times and the Observer, but we still do: on average every 18 months. What's the problem? Well it isn't just the lead, arsenic, beryllium and brominated fire-retardant cases (pollutants all) disappearing into our land fills (which are not covered by the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive [WEEE] in Europe). Coltan also goes into our phones. It occurs mainly in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and as such our demand for upgrades has been contributing to a war (despite mobile phone companies' claims to the contrary, coltan is not regulated like timber). If we must upgrade, we can at least recycle or hack our old phones.
posted by nthdegx on Aug 7, 2006 - 49 comments

"Exhibited each afternoon during September."

Bought from a slave trader and put on display at the Bronx zoo: the strange, sad story of Ota Benga, a Pygmy with filed teeth brought from the Congo to America in 1906. Here are a couple of contemporary news accounts of the controversial exhibit. After the zoo, Benga tried to make a life in America, studying to be a missionary. "But what he really wanted to do was to tell everyone in this country that his people were dying, and why. I think he thought that eventually they'd listen. But they never did. That, to me, is the real tragedy." In 1916, at the age of 32, he built a ceremonial fire, chipped off the caps on his teeth, performed a final tribal dance, and shot himself with a stolen pistol. Creationists say the story illustrates "the racism of evolutionary theory" and "the horrors that evolutionary theory has brought to society."
posted by CunningLinguist on Aug 7, 2006 - 35 comments

"The pygmies are alive and well,"

Negative Campaign Tactics in Congo: A candidate for president in Congo's first free election in four decades defends himself against accusations of cannibalism. He dismisses as libelous electioneering claims that he ate pygmies during his years as a rebel leader.
posted by [expletive deleted] on Jul 28, 2006 - 9 comments

10 Stories

Ten Stories the World Should Hear More About.
posted by ND¢ on Jun 2, 2006 - 28 comments

Congotronics

Congotronics! Mawangu Mingiedi, 72, a musician and truck driver from Kinshasa, was simply trying to allow the music of his street band, Konono No. 1, be heard over the traffic and street noise, but when he fashioned home-made amplifiers out of junkyard parts he created something raw and distorted with a sound all its own (quicktime). (via MonkeySARS, where an MP3 awaits you)
posted by Robot Johnny on Nov 22, 2005 - 41 comments

Congo Expedition 1909-1915

The Congo Expedition from 1909 to 1915. A decade after Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness first depicted the mysteries and agonies of the area, Herbert Lang and James Chapin set sail for the northeastern Belgian Congo. One of the many visual and auditory treats of this site is the delightful children's book, Where are you going, Manyoni? by Catherine Stock.
posted by nickyskye on Jun 25, 2005 - 9 comments

In the Congo, In the Congo

In Congo, 1,000 die per day: Why isn't it a media story? "A media story is currently developing around the Congo - focusing, paradoxically, on how the conflict is not a media story." A journalist's-eye view of a story approaching the tipping-point towards widespread media coverage.
posted by ZenMasterThis on Jun 15, 2005 - 42 comments

Kingacus Kongnificus

Six foot tall ferocious lion killing species of ape discovered in jungles of the Congo. Or they could be giant chimpanzees. Or half-breeds. The discovery has baffled scientists.
posted by stbalbach on Oct 9, 2004 - 30 comments

Story of the Congo

History, Present, and Future of the Congo CBC has created a great multimedia site that tells the story of the Congo. Sad, maddening, but offers a ray of hope.
posted by Coop on Jun 2, 2003 - 5 comments

meanwhile in the congo

"We can only watch the slaughter, say UN troops" in the Congo - where machetes are turned into weapons of mass destruction - the hobbled UN presses for action, and the US and Major US Media outlets take no notice.
posted by specialk420 on May 26, 2003 - 51 comments

Konono No. 1: Tradi-modern music from Kinshasa

Konono No. 1 "This band is one of the main exponents of a spectacular style of music which has developed in the suburbs of Kinshasa (DR Congo). The Congolese call it "tradi-modern", in other words: electrified traditional music. These are musicians who left the bush to settle in the capital and who, in order to go on keep fulfilling their social role and make themselves heard by the ancestors (and, more concretely, by their fellow citizens) despite the high level of urban noise, have had to resort to DIY amplification of their instruments, and to megaphones (conical speakers). This makeshift electrification has provoked a radical mutation of their sound, as it has introduced distortions which they have integrated to their style. [...] The band's line-up includes three electric likembés [thumb pianos] (bass, medium and treble), equipped with hand-made microphones built from magnets salvaged from old car parts, and plugged into amplifiers." Via womanonfire.
posted by jokeefe on Feb 25, 2003 - 16 comments

An estimated 300,000 people have fled across the Congolese/Rwandan border to escape lava flow from the recently erupted Mt Nyiragongo volcano. Many are thought to have died, but this mass movement has prompted fears that a much larger humanitarian disaster may be imminent.
More photographs here, map of the region here.
posted by davehat on Jan 18, 2002 - 4 comments

Before you get that cell phone

Before you get that cell phone check to see where the tantalum inside it comes from. You could be funding a civil war in the Congo.
posted by kliuless on Jun 6, 2001 - 4 comments

Well, that's it.

Well, that's it. We're done for. Ebola hits North America...maybe.
posted by ritualdevice on Feb 6, 2001 - 29 comments

No Refuge: He fled the war in Congo for America. The I.N.S. greeted him by putting him in jail. -- this week's nyt mag has stories of people who have been in new york city for one year. this one is especially powerful.
posted by palegirl on Sep 18, 2000 - 0 comments

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