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FESTAC 77 BOOK

Early in 1977, thousands of artists, writers, musicians, activists and scholars from Africa and the black diaspora assembled in Lagos for FESTAC ’77, the 2nd World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture. With a radically ambitious agenda underwritten by Nigeria’s newfound oil wealth, FESTAC ’77 would unfold as a complex, glorious and excessive culmination of a half-century of transatlantic and pan-Africanist cultural-political gatherings.

As told by Chimurenga, this is the first publication to address the planetary scale of FESTAC alongside the personal and artistic encounters it made possible. Featuring extensive unseen photographic and archival materials, interviews and new commissions, the book relays the stories, words and works of the festival’s extraordinary cast of characters.

With: Wole Soyinka, Léopold Sédar Senghor, Ahmed Sékou Touré, Archie Shepp, Miriam Makeba, Allioune Diop, Jeff Donaldson, Louis Farrakhan, Stevie Wonder, Abdias do Nascimento, Keorapetse Kgositsile, Mario de Andrade, Ted Joans, Nadi Qamar,Carlos Moore, Ayi Kwei Armah, Ama Ata Aidoo, Johnny Dyani, Werewere Liking, Marilyn Nance, Barkley Hendricks, Mildred Thompson, Ibrahim El-Salahi, Jayne Cortez, Atukwei OkaiJonas Gwangwa, Theo Vincent, Lindsay Barrett, Gilberto de la Nuez, Sun Ra and many others.

And featuring new writing from: Akin Adesokan, Moses Serubiri, Harmony Holiday, Semeneh Ayalew, Hassan Musa, Emmanuel Iduma, Michael McMillan, Dominique Malaquais and Cedric Vincent, Molefe Pheto, Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi, Hermano Penna, Alice Aterianus.
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Published by Chimurenga and Afterall Books, in association with Asia Art Archive, the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College and RAW Material Company, 2019.


The FESTAC 77 publication is available for purchase through our online shop.

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Islam between Françafrique and Afrabia

Needless to say, Françafrique was not the only constellation of capital and culture on offer at the time of African political independence.

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Chimurenganyana: Rumblin’ by Dominique Malaquais (June 2012)

A text and image reflection on the “Rumble in the Jungle”, the Muhammad Ali / George Foreman boxing match held in Kinshasa in 1974. Norman Mailer started The Fight, Dominique Malaquais punched back. Artwork by Kakudji.

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Ibadan, Soutin and the Puzzle of Bower’s Tower

The jingle would survive the event, as the poetry of a battle-cry outlives a war, but that eventuality belonged in the future.

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Who Killed Kabila I

From December 13 – 17, 2017, Chimurenga installed a library of books, films, and visual material mapping extensive research that ask “Who Killed Kabila“, as the starting point for an in-depth investigation into power, territory and the creative imagination. This book catalogues all the research material produced and collected for this installation.

The equation is simple: the length of a Congolese president’s reign is proportional to his/her willingness to honour the principle that the resources of the Congo belong to others. Mzee Kabila failed.

Who killed Kabila is no mystery either. It is not A or B or C. But rather A and B and C. All options are both true and necessary – it’s the coming together of all these individuals, groups and circumstances, on one day, within the proliferating course of the history, that does it.

So telling this story isn’t merely be a matter of presenting multiple perspectives but rather of finding a medium able to capture the radical singularity of the event in its totality, including each singular, sometimes fantastical, historical fact, rumour or suspicion.

We’ve heard plenty about the danger of the single story – we want to explore its power. We take inspiration from the Congolese musical imagination, its capacity for innovation and its potential to allow us to think “with the bodily senses, to write with the musicality of one’s own flesh” (Mbembe).


The catalogue is now available for sale in the Chimurenga shop.

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Where Terror Lies

The rhetoric of ‘radical’ and ‘fundamentalist’ Islam, of ‘global jihad’ and ‘terror’ is, ironically, historical and recoverable from the irrational.

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The Chronic: Who Killed Kabila II

On January 16, 2001, in the middle of the day, shots are heard in the Palais de Marbre,the residence of President Laurent-Désiré Kabila. The road bordering the presidential residence, usually closed from 6pm by a simple guarded barrier is blocked by tanks.

At the Ngaliema hospital in Kinshasa, a helicopter lands and a body wrapped in a bloody sheet is off loaded. Non-essential medical personnel and patients are evacuated and the hospital clinic is surrounded by elite troops. No one enters or leaves. RFI (Radio France Internationale) reports on a serious incident at the presidential palace in Kinshasa.

Rumor, the main source of information in the Congolese capital, is set in motion…  

18 years after the assassination of Laurent-Désiré Kabila, rumours still proliferate. Suspects include: the Rwandan government; the French; Lebanese diamond dealers; the CIA; Robert Mugabe; Angolan security forces; the apartheid-era Defence Force; political rivals and rebel groups; Kabila’s own kadogos (child soldiers); family members and even musicians.

The geopolitics of those implicated tells its own story; the event came in the middle of the so-called African World War, a conflict that involved multiple regional players, including, most prominently, Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, Angola, Namibia, and Zimbabwe.

So, who killed Kabila? The new issue of the Chronic presents this query as the starting point for an in-depth investigation into power, territory and the creative imagination by writers from the Congo and other countries involved in the conflict.

The issue is the result of a three-year research project that included a 5-day intervention and installation at La Colonie (Paris), from December 13 – 17, 2017, which featured a live radio station and a research library, a conceptual inventory of the archive of this murder – all documented in a research catalogue.

As this research revealed, who killed Kabila is no mystery. It is not A or B or C. But rather A and B and C. All options are both true and necessary – it’s the coming together of all these individuals, groups and circumstances, on one day, within the proliferating course of the history, that does it.

Telling this story then, isn’t merely a matter of presenting multiple perspectives but rather of finding a medium able to capture the radical singularity of the event in its totality, including each singular, sometimes fantastical, historical fact, rumour or suspicion. We’ve heard plenty about the danger of the single story – in this issue we explore its power. We take inspiration from the Congolese musical imagination, its capacity for innovation and its potential to allow us to think “with the bodily senses, to write with the musicality of one’s own flesh.”

However, this editorial project doesn’t merely put music in context, it proposes music as the context, the paradigm for the writing. The single story we write borrows from the sebene – the upbeat, mostly instrumental part of Congolese rumba famously established by Franco (Luambo Makiadi), which consists in the lead guitarist playing short looping phrases with variations, supported or guided by the shouts of the atalaku (animateur) and driving, snare-based drumming.


The Invention of Africa by Franco & T.P.OK Jazz – Ntone Edjabe on the Pan African Space Station.



“Franco, c’est l’inventeur du sebene. Parce que… et à coté il y avait Nico Kasanda, le docteur Nico, qui lui avait plus de technique de guitare mais qui jouait très mélodique, et Luambo c’était le mec qui est vraiment le mec du quartier avec sa connaissance intuitive de la guitare il a inventé cet manière de faire des sorte de boucle rythmique. Sa manière de jouer c’est un boucle rythmique. Le même phrase rythmique qui revient tout le temps. Et c’est ça le sebene congolais. Et jusqu’à aujourd’hui nous fonctionnons par sebene. Même moi même.“


Interview on France Inter : « Le labo de Ray Lema du 16 mars 2014 »

Ray Lema shares more stories and sounds from his life in music with Bintou Simporé onboard the Pan African Space Station.
Recorded for PASS in Paris at the Fondation Cartier exhibition Beauté Congo – 1926-2015 – Congo Kitoko. For more visit http://panafricanspacestation.org.za

Similarly, to follow Ousmane Sembene’s method of using multi-location and polyphony as decolonial narrative tools, we invited writers from the countries directly involved and implicated in the events surrounding Kabila’s death (DR Congo, Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Angola, and a de-territorialised entity called AFDL) to write one story: the assassination of Kabila.

Working fluidly between fact and fiction, and featuring multiple forms of writing, the contributors – Yvonne Owuor, Antoine Vumilia Muhindo, Parselelo Kantai, Jihan El-Tahri, Daniel K. Kalinaki,  Kivu Ruhorahoza, Percy Zvomuya and Sinzo Aanza – use the event-scene of the shooting is their starting point to collectively tell the single story with its multiplication of plots and subplots that challenge history as a linear march, and tell not the sum but the derangement of its parts.

The issue thus performs an imaginative remapping that better accounts for the complex spatial, temporal, political, economic and cultural relations at play, as well the internal and external actors, organized into networks and nuclei – not only human actors but objects; music; images; texts, ghosts etc – and how these actors come together in time, space, relationships.

This edition of the Chimurenga Chronic is conceived as a sebene of the Congolese rumba – enjoy the dance!

The Chronic is a quarterly pan African gazette, published by Chimurenga.

This edition is part of a larger research project of the Chimurenga Library. It is produced with support from Heinrich Boll Foundation (Cape Town), and in collaboration with La Colonie (Paris), Cosmopolis Bienial/ Centre Pompidou (Paris), Marabouparken Konsthall (Stockholm) and Kalmar Konstmuseum.

For more information or to order your print or digital copy visit www.chimurengachronic.co.za and/or contact Chimurenga on +27(0)21 4224168 or info@chimurenga.co.za.

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Nigeria’s Superstar Men Of God

Who needs the God of the bible with his promises of trials and tribulations, crosses and paths of repentance? Yemisi Aribisala listens to the sermons, counts the money, watches the high-flying life of Nigeria’s mega-preachers and wonders.

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The Meaning of Being Numerous

The man who sets up the bomb is long gone before it goes off.

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Urbanism Beyond Architecture – African Cities as Infrastructure

Vyjayanthi Rao, in conversation with Filip de Boeck & Abdou Maliq Simone […]

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MOLOTOV COCKTAIL

First published in 2007 Molotov Cocktail initially appeared to be a contradictory mix, on one side there was its incendiary title, cover art of a hand poised to throw a lit petrol bomb, and the provocative subtitle , Dismantling the Master’s House Brick by Brick. Then this in the first editorial: “Molotov Cocktai broadly backs the principles and policies of the African National Congress. We believe that discussing the ANC with insight and generosity will be more interesting and productive than condemning the party out of ignorance.” A revolutionary magazine aimed at defending “the powers that be” with word bombs?

Partially, yes. Edited by James Sanders (initially with the help of Ronald Suresh Roberts and later alone) Molotov Cocktail captures the ambiguities of contemporary post apartheid South Africa, where despite the change of political power the majority of the media is still owned by a small white minority. As the editorial in the second issue explains, “In South Africa, many newspapers and magazines adopt a pose of neutrality that is essentially oppositional. Some of this derives from the ‘anti-apartheid’ history of the mining press but it is really a cover for a political agenda that attempts to impose an illiberal narrative onto news and politics. The print media has not transformed quickly enough and we hope to speed it along.”

With that in mind Molotov Cocktail took a deliberately intellectual approach, defining itself as, “a platform where South African intellectuals will debate issues and engage in serious discussions about the direction that our country should take.” It has featured everything from archival documents including long-lost SACP biographies and back issues of the SADF’s Paratus, to new writing on cultural schizophrenia, oil, opposition, Zimbabwe, ‘apartheid’ in Israel, meeting a Nazi in SA, polo in Plett, Post-Polokwane: the new ANC, banking, crime and succession.

It also includes news, controversial profiles, satire, political gossip, book and film reviews, detailed media analysis and some literary critique. Graphics often take the form of illustrations, posters, political cartoons, power organograms and “how to” guides, including of course, “How to make a Molotov Cocktail“.

Significantly, the magazine silenced critics who saw it as Pro-Mbeki mouthpiece by maintaining its editorial stance despite Mbeki’s electoral defeat at the ANC conference in 2007.

To date the magazine has brought out 5 issues and established itself as a one of the few independent print voices, offering alternative news, views, critique and satire that challenge the mainstream media.


PEOPLE

James Sanders, Ronald Suresh Roberts, Adam Rumball, Zanele Mashinini, Yasmin Sooka, Sindiso Mnisi, Izzy Grove, Eeben Barlow, Lancelot du Preez, Richard Gott, Peter Hallward, Piers Pigou, Eusebius McKaiser, Sasha Polakow-Suransky, Lester Sands, Adam Rumball, Nicholas Tee, Dan Mare, Jonathan Bloche, Phillip Dexter and Thato Mofokeng.


FAMILY TREE

  • Nose Week 1993
  • The Media magazine

RE/SOURCES

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LAMALIF

Published in Morocco in 1966, Lamalif took its title from two Arabic letters that form the word “la”, meaning “no”. This sly wordplay encapsulated the magazine’s objective. Launched after the defeat of the Moroccan opposition (Union Socialiste des Forces Populaires) by the monarchy, Lamalif was a form of challenge. “The goal in this tragic situation was not to lose hope, to build an alternative,” explained the founders, Zakia Daoud and Mohamed Loghlam.

Throughout its 22 years existence, Lamalif was characterised by its intellectual rigour and radical political stance. Covering social, cultural and economical issues, all from a political perspective it established itself as “a space for reflection and a force of significant challenge.” Its ideological debates amongst journalists, economists, academics, politicians and revolutionaries became global intellectual references and proved seminal in the development of many of Mocrocco’s best thinkers and writers. Its focus on arts and culture was equally influential. Lamalif‘s covers frequently featured work by artists and its writings on film contributed to the rise of Moroccan cinema in the 1970s.

Lamalif was however never exclusionary and it soon established a wide and diverse readership. Ironically it was this success that led to the publications ultimate demise. Its popularity and outspoken stance soon attracted the ire of the authorities and it didn’t take long before Daoud was “regarded as Public Enemy.” After years of threats, censorship and seizures, Lamalif was finally forced to shut down in 1988.



traduction française par Scarlett Antonio

Publi au Maroc en 1966, Lamalif a pris son nom des deux lettres de l’alphabet arabe qui forment le mot “la”, signifiant “non”. Ce jeu de mots malin résumait l’objectif du magazine. Lancé après la défaite de l’opposition marocaine (Union socialiste des Forces Populaires) par la monarchie, Lamalif était une forme de défit. “Le but dans cette tragique situation n’était pas de perdre espoir, de construire une alternative,” expliquaient les fondateurs, Zakia Daoud et Mohamed Loghlam.

Pendant ces 22 ans d’existence, Lamalif était caractérisé par sa rigueur intellectuelle et sa position politique radicale. Reportant sur les problèmes sociaux, culturels et économiques, d’un point de vue politique, il s’est affermi comme “un espace pour la réflexion et une force de défit considérable.”

Ses débats idéologiques parmi les journalistes, économistes, académiciens, politiciens et révolutionnaires devinrent des références intellectuelles mondiales et ont prouvé être fructueux dans le développement de nombreux écrivains et meilleurs penseurs marocains. Son intérêt sur les arts et la culture était également influents. Les reportages de Lamalif mettaient fréquemment en vedette le travail fait par des artistes et ses articles sur les films ont contribué à l’essor du cinéma marocain dans les années 1970.

Lamalif n’a néanmoins jamais été exclusif et s’est vite établi une place parmi un grand nombre de lecteurs différents. Ironiquement, ce fut ce succès qui mena les publications à leur ultime fin. Sa popularité et sa position de franc-parler attira la colère des autorités et il n’a pas fallu attendre longtemps avant que Daoud soit “considéré comme l’Ennemi Publique.” Après des années de menaces, de censures et saisies, Lamalif fut forcé de fermer définitivement en 1988.


PEOPLE

Jean Gourmelin, Abdellah Laraoui, Paul Pascon, Abdelkebir Khatibi, Abdallah Laroui, Fathallah Oualalou Oualalou, Abdelaali Benamour, Habib El Malki, Khalid Alioua, Bruno Etienne, Mohammed Jibril, Mohammed Tozy, Aboubakr Jamai, Salim Jay, Najib Boudraa


FAMILY TREE

  • Almaghrib(1937)
  • Jeune Afrique (1960)
  • Al Mouharrir(1962)
  • Addoustour(1963)
  • Souffles (1966)
  • Anoual
  • TelQuel (2001), which founder Ahmed Reda Benchemsi initially wanted to call Lamalifin tribute.

RE/SOURCES

  • Lamalif on Wikipedia
  • Zakya Daoud, Les Années Lamalif, Tarik Editions, 2007
  • Laila Lalami, “The Lamalif Years”, February 15, 2007
  • Abdeslam Kadiri, “Portrait. Les mille vies de Zakya Daoud”, TelQuel, 2005.
  • “An interview with Zakia Daoud”, APN, March 9, 2007
  • “Rétrospectivee : Il était une fois la presse”, TelQuel
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HOW THE WEST WAS LOST

If one thinks about it the whole thing goes back to amaQheya; the cultural proletariat… a proletariat with a cultural history that has taught it to be careful of an African existence…

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The Pharaoh’s New Clothes

Its location, vocation, and publication intended to speak to a politicised Third World imaginary.

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Archie Shepp’s Shirt Suggests

The moment has stayed with every person who witnessed it. Archie Shepp improvising live on the street, surrounded by hundreds of onlookers in a trance induced by his otherworldly beats.

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New Cartographies

Since its launch in 2011, every edition of The Chronic has engaged with this question:  […]

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PASS is going to Australia!

From 11 -13 April, as part of an exhibition hosted by Monash […]

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Genres of the Human

  In his new book, The Sound of Culture: Diaspora and Black […]

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Festac ’77 – a faction by Akin Adesokan

Was Festac 77 curated by Esu Elegba? Akin Adesokan’s faction explores art […]

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BLACKOUT x 7 Octobre

Native Maqari and Keziah Jones Villa Medici channel Fela take on on […]

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The Tyelera Moment

by Thabo Jijana  On December 13, 2016, in Salem Party Club v […]

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Frantz Fanon’s Uneven Ribs

For me knowledge is very powerful. Any knowledge has claws and teeth. If you don’t see the teeth and the claws then it is useless, then somebody has emasculated it.

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La République et sa Bête : à propos des émeutes dans les banlieues de France

par Achille Mbembe La France est un vieux pays fier de ses […]

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Lindela (the winnie suite)

an excerpt from ‘Lindela (the winnie suite)’ by Dominique Malaquais car, maps, […]

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Dislocations in the Congolese World of Sound

“Dislocation” is how Congolese rumba historians describe the incessant splinterings that are […]

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TO REFUSE THAT WHICH HAS BEEN REFUSED TO YOU

Fred Moten and Saidiya Hartman sit down to talk about the temporal […]

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The “Walking Corpse”

Thousands of Africans, physically displaced and economically disabled by postcolonial dis-order, confront […]

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EVERY JOURNEY IS A READING

By Stacy Hardy My cover is easy. There are a million roles […]

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FROM ORLANDO TO ORLANDO

By Roberto Alajmo Background:  The ship Mendelsshon—referring to an NGO, and having […]

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THE MARTYRDOM OF MAYOR ORLANDO

by Moses Marz Elected four times as mayor of Palermo over a period […]

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THINGS THAT GO IN AND OUT OF THE BODY

How can we think about bodies and circulation without deferring to the […]

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TO REFUSE THAT WHICH HAS BEEN REFUSED TO YOU

Fred Moten and Saidiya Hartman sit down to talk about the temporal […]

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THE IDEA OF A BORDERLESS WORLD

The capacity to decide who can move, who can settle, where and […]

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HOLIDAY PLANNING WITH HEI VOETSEK!

And now for an important travel advisory. Planning to visit Johannesburg or […]

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Black Images – An Essay by Peter James Hudson

July 2008 The premiere issue of Black Images: A Critical Quarterly of Black […]

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PORTRAITS OF POWER

The president’s portrait holds a venerable position in post-independence Zimbabwe. Not unlike […]

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OF TOTEMS, HISTORY AND POLITICS

In Shona cosmology, people are understood to be more than the sum […]

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The Invention of Zimbabwe – New edition of Chimurenga’s Chronic available now!

14 November 2017. News breaks of a coup d’état underway in Zimbabwe. […]

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The Making of the Impossible

Review by GWEN ANSELL October: The story of the Russian revolution China […]

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THE BLACK BOMB

Mamadou Diallo channels Carlos Moore, the exiled Cuban who traversed most of […]

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SUNGURA STORIES

Ranga Mberi travels back in musical time to the 1980s and 1990s, […]

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NONE BUT OURSELVES

The history of reggae in Zimbabwe echoes far beyond Bob Marley’s historic […]

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NATIONAL HEROES ACRE II & III

National Heroes Acre II Photographs by Jekesai Njikizanava National Heroes Acre II […]

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THE WAY I SEE IT – National Heroes Acre I

Bongani Kona Who or what haunts you? Do recurrences draw you back […]

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MURIMI MUNHU

Panashe Chigumadzi travels to the rural Zimbabwe of her ancestors, onto land […]

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MILKING A DYING COW

Zimbabwe’s economic crises have played out in the press, in political and […]

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‘GO TO THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE!’ MURIDISM IN THE LIFE OF CHEIKH ANTA DIOP

While French colonialism was at its zenith, the first quarter of the […]

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BAHUJANAFRIQUE – A PLAUSIBLE FUTURE

Sumesh Sharma traces the circuitous roots of Afro-Asiatic history, from the world’s […]

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ARMY ARRANGEMENT

News of President Robert Gabriel Mugabe’s imminent ouster from office continues to […]

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A BRIEF HISTORY OF CHIMURENGA AS A COMMUNAL LABORATORY

by Clapperton Chakanetsa Mavhunga Since the 1970s, Zimbabweans have used the term […]

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Poverty is Older than Opulence

Maverick Serbian filmmaker, Emir Kusturica (Time of the Gypsies; Underground), talks with […]

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New Trade Routes: Soccer Cities

We make our own maps tracing the new trade routes for the […]

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Zinedine Zidane and and the event of the secret

Grant Farred produces a Derridean reading of Zidane’s world-stopping head butt.   […]

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To Defend and to Question

Zinedine Zidane has described him as “the greatest footballer of all” and […]

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A master of bling with feline style

Writing just after the 2011 Africa Cup of Nations,  Achille Mbembe* looks […]

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Who Killed Kabila?

The Pan African Space Station/Chimurenga Library at La Colonie, Paris 13 December […]

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Meeting Marti, Neruda and Langa in the streets…

Amabhulu amnyama andenzel’ i-worry, Amabhulu amanyama andenzel’ i-worry andenzel’ indlala (White-blacks are […]

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Last Words to the Nation by  Salvador Allende

This speech was delivered at 9:10 am on September 11, 1973, in […]

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Dictionary of SA Elections 2014

by Willem Boshoff Aa albocracy Government by “white” men or Europeans. The […]

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Some African Cultural Concepts By Steve Biko

  This is a paper given by Steve at a conference called […]

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The Definition Of Black Consciousness by Bantu Stephen Biko

It seeks to infuse the black community with a new-found pride in themselves, their efforts, their value systems, their culture, their religion and their outlook to life.

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A Brief History of Fufu Pounding

By Moses März In July 2016, the Kumasi Polytechnic presented the K-POLY […]

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The Sahara Is Not A Boundary

Stacy Hardy is a writer and senior editor at Chimurenga. She is […]

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A Letter from a Homeless Prodigal

Emeka Ugwu is a Data Analyst who lives in Lagos, Nigeria. He […]

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Second Transition

“Second Transition” refers to the phase of liberation struggle in South Africa […]

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In Bond We Trust?

Nearly a decade on from the worst postcolonial turmoil that saw their […]

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Your Own Hand Sold You: Voluntary servitude in the Francafrique

In the CFA franc, the French colonial mission in West Africa found […]

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Dear President Museveni

By Isaac Otidi Amuke I have debated about writing this for days, in […]

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Radical Rudeness

By Paula Akugizibwe In Seeing, Jose Saramago’s novel about the death of […]

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Grandmothers Teaching: A view from South Africa

The proliferation of MA in Creative Writing programmes at universities raises questions […]

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Between: The state and Bhut’ Joe, the frequency and the future

An exchange between Julie Nxadi and Asher Gamedze unravels the state of […]

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No One Will Save You: Remembering Kenya’s Karl Marx

Student movements in many African countries have historically confronted contradictions of colonial […]

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Pan African Activism Meets Mamdanisation

Theory and practice have been butting heads at Makerere University’s Institute of […]

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From Seven Modes for Hood Science

By Harmony Holiday Mode One, Charles Mingus: Just go on your nerve […]

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The Agronomist

He decided, I’m going to find a way in which I’m going to stop hunger because it’s this that turns us into slaves dependent on our masters, it’s this that decimates communities…

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Who Will Save The Saviours?

A close gaze at the collective apathy that killed Dr. Sebi: In […]

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Survivor’s Guide to Smelling Naais

In the pre-Apocalypse, Zayaan Khan nurses the Apartheid hangover that carved up […]

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Dagga

Rustum Kozain muses over the cultural and alternative relations built, negotiations and dealings made as a resident of Cape Town.

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Third Transition

Shoks Mzolo and Bongani Kona trace the path of South Africa’s transformation […]

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Bread of Life

Commercial bread contains additives to accelerate production and to improve the look […]

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brinjals

By Cullen Goldblatt    A half teaspoonful of cream of tartar to stop […]

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POLITRICKS IN THE STADIUM

Melanie Boehi discusses how, for politicians, sports tournaments such as the upcoming […]

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FOOTBALL CANNOT GO FASTER THAN POLITICS

Athletes are not immune to their political surroundings and football, in particular, […]

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Marikana

On 16 August 2012, the South African Police Service opened fire on […]

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Debt and Study

Against the proliferation of capitalist logistics, governance by credit and the management […]

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Qalqalah

Through the fictional character Qalqalah, Sarah Rifky, grapples with the question what is an institution? Speaking […]

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Monumental Failures

Dominique Malaquais reports from Cameroon on the active objection of one ‘Combattant’ to the negation of many, cast in stone. Decrying these monumental symbols to the least salubrious of colonial exploits, his rebellion is most fitting in a country that stands on ceremony other than its own.

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The University of Soweto

Frank B. Wilderson draws from his memory of student protests in 1993 […]

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The Mission of Forgetting

Joshua Craze offers a sobering analysis of the fantasy that is the […]

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Protected: Sister Outsider

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

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Reform and Revolution at the University of Lovanium

In this essay on the gestation, articulations and manipulations of student politics […]

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Marcus Garvey is Alive in East Africa

A university in eastern Uganda, named in honour of the pan African […]

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How to Approach Heaven

The struggle for freedom is a reckless, foolish and sacrosanct adventure – […]

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How Third World Students Liberated the West

In a twist to mainstream tropes of radical student movements of the 1960s, and their impact on the history of political thought and action, Pedro Monaville argues that the terrains of the Third World, and particularly the history of student movements in Congo, are vital to explore if we are to makes sense of how that period informs the present.

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Four Days in June

By Moses Marz President Omar al-Bashir is looking out of the window of […]

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Focusing the Fashionable Mind

The parochialism and pretence emanating from some South African human rights organisations […]

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Come On Up, Sweetheart

In an “intensely private encounter” with the personal letters of James Baldwin, […]

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A Brief History of Student Protests

By Stacy Hardy “Bile bums my inside!/ I feel like vomiting! For […]

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Hanging Participle

By Anna Kente I am becoming. I have the proof. Documents, photos, evidence. […]

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Justino

By Pedro Rosa-Mendes The news spread through the camp: Justino knew then […]

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Remembering Biafra

In 1968, Nigeria’s finance minister, agricultural produce mogul Obafemi Awolowo declared: “Starvation is a legitimate weapon of war, and we have every intention to use it against the rebels.”

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The Amazing Career of Passport Number B957848

By Akin Adesokan (For Larry Siems & Aimee Liu) I The wait […]

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Valladolid is not Spain, but it is

By Peter James Hudson They say that Valladolid was the only town […]

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Close encounters at the Florida 1000

Tony Mochama goes galactic for a little bump and grind, gives a […]

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A Political Economy of Noise

Kangsen Feka Wakai traces the uncharacteristic journey through a “noisy era” of […]

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Q&A with Mehari Taddele Maru

By Paula Akugizibwe and Mehari Maru  Mehari Maru is an Addis Ababa-based […]

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Interview with Raila Odinga

The Chronic interviewed Raila Amollo Odinga at his Karen residence on the […]

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Dear Chimurenga- The India-Pakistan Division

By Jon Soske The United Nation’s release of the agreement stipulating the […]

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A Brief History of Monuments

By Stacy Hardy Abbasid Caliph Abu Ja’far al-Mansur, the founder of the ancient city of […]

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Season’s Greetings

By Rayyane Tabet On the morning of 1 December 1960, thousands of […]

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The African Affairs Bureau

By Helmi Sharawy I have pointed out in the past that the three […]

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El-Salahi – The Wise Enemy

By Hassan Musa I want to introduce Ibrahim El-Salahi here as “our […]

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Lotus Magazine

By Nida Ghouse In the wake of Youssef El-Sebai’s death, the streets of Cairo swelled in protest. […]

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Trajectories of the Sudanese Gulf

By Michael Vasquez Hiwar The journal that the Congress for Cultural Freedom […]

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Nasser and the African Revolution

Politically and socially Egypt is said to occupy three spaces as mentioned […]

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Qibla

 Qibla leader Imam Achmad Cassiem in conversation with Khalid Shamis. “When the […]

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Jihad as a Form of Struggle in the Resistance to Apartheid in South Africa

By Na’eem Jeenah Although Muslims form about 2 per cent of the South […]

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Dispossessed Vigils

Mourning and Regeneration in Inner-City Johannesburg[1] By Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon “Only the conscious horror […]

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City Building in Post-Conflict, Post-Socialist Luanda

Burying the Past with Phantasmagorias of the Future   By Anne Pitcher […]

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Under Nelson Mandela Boulevard

A Story About Cape Town’s Tanzanian Stowaways By Sean Christie Images by David […]

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Reluctantly Loud

Interventions in the History of a Land Occupation By Koni Benson and Faeza […]

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“We need more contact zones to create a space for critical discussion, and to propagate and exchange a continuous cultural benefit.”

A conversation between Professor Muyiwa Falaiye and Mudi Yahaya Muyiwa Falaiye: I […]

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“The contemporary art in this country is flowing, but it needs direction.”

A conversation between performance artist, Jelili Atiku and former Director of the […]

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The Death Metaphor

By Jahman Anikulapo A sudden burst of confusion overwhelmed the belly of the […]

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Visions for the National Tear-ter of Nigeria

Four Conversations and Seven Performative Pamphlets Seven Performative Pamphlets: Ayodele Arigbabu, Hunter […]

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This Sea Shall Be Uprooted

By Jumoke Verissimo Images by Adolphus Opara   On the silk expanse […]

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High Class Shanty Town

By Jean-Christophe Lanquetin *translated by Karen Press     In Ouakam, on […]

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Urban Sahara from the Sky

How Capitalism Fixes the Dunes. by Marion Broquère, Armelle Choplin, Simon Nancy Images […]

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IRM de la ville de Douala

by Maud De La Chappelle To Didier À Douala, on nomme les […]

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Mapping The Last King of Africa

    This map features alongside a text by Olivier Vallée in the new […]

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In a Time of Boko Haram

by Elnathan John. I. DRESSES Beneath the oil-stained, flattened pillow that Mansir sits […]

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Bordering on Borana

by Dalle Ebrahim. It was 2011 and I was seated in a taxi […]

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The Power of Green Crayons

Agri Ismaïl recalls growing up off the map – his Kurdish identity […]

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Pwani Si Kenya

Despite years of development promises from Kenya’s central government, the Coast remains […]

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The Last King of Africa

Brother Leader, global agitator, anti-imperialist revolutionary, megalomaniacal renegade. The former Libyan leader […]

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Secret Countries

  This map features in the new Chronic, an edition in which […]

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How to Eat a Forest

Billy Kahora recounts a journey into Kenya’s Mau Forest, where he confronts […]

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Living Dangerously in Petroluanda

António Tomás picks through the post-independence architectural ruins of Angola’s capital city […]

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The Institute

Cultural institutes are considered effective instruments in foreign policy for any nation-state […]

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Soft Power Desire Machines and the Production of Africa Rising

      Alongside texts by Jesse Weaver Shipley, Moses März and Oribhabor […]

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Pan Africanism in Katanga

In the margins of a specific history, in which land and inhabitants […]

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All That is Solid Melts into PR

Mark Fisher, author of the book Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative? […]

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Operation Protective Edge

by  Paul Wessels. The Goldstone Report: The Legacy of the Landmark Investigation of […]

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Licking Dirty Hands

by David Shook. In the tradition of German poet Heimrad Bäcker, who turned […]

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Undoing the Spell

by Ben Verghese. Many of the dominant narratives of the partition focus on […]

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Men and their Dogs

by Gwen Ansell. Leonardo Padura is perhaps best known outside his native Cuba […]

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Miniature Metamorphoses

by André Naffis-Sahely. In his dotage, Henry Kissinger has come to resemble Emperor […]

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Shooting From Point Blank Range

Moses Serubiri turns on the television and watches the news unfold, in […]

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Beneath the Underdog

Fighter, soldier, poet, arguably the PR-unit and embodiment of the Economic Freedom […]

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Life After Oil

Jeremy Weate explores the cultural politics of the petro-based economy in Nigeria, […]

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After Oil Water

  This features in the new Chronic, an edition in which we […]

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African War Machines

    This map features in the new Chronic, an edition in which […]

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A Brief History of Mapping

by Stacy Hardy. In 1921, the independent Polish scholar Alfred Habdank Skarbek Korzybski […]

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The Internet is Afropolitan

Achille Mbembe discusses the history and horizon of digital communication and identity […]

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Yambo Ouloguem: Postcolonial Writer, Anti-Wahhabist Militant

Christopher Wise recalls conversations and texts of the Malian author, whose deep […]

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How Close Are You To This Place?

by Karen Press. Where is the heart of darkness? We think we know. It’s […]

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The Chronic – mapping the new – soon come

“In that Empire, the Art of Cartography attained such Perfection that the […]

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What Follows? The State of Black Collectivity in the Year of the Sheep

Continuing to sing a vital and urgent message of black collectivity, Harmony Holiday writes from […]

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The African Renaissance Hoer-o-scope for Politicians

by Zebulon Dread ARIES Your best bet at survival is not a […]

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The Alternative is at Hand

Working within the black radical tradition, Fred Moten and Stefano Harney frame a […]

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Beyond Oppression-Liberation-Maendeleo

by Parselelo Kantai It may have been the economist David Ndii who coined […]

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Propaganda and Politics tunnel vision history of art activism in South Africa

The important contribution of the Black Consciousness Movement to art activism in […]

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The G.Spot Protagonists

by Goddy Leye I am sitting in front of the Cologne cathedral, amazed by […]

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Philatelic Pan Africanism

The Otolith Group, founded by Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun in 2002, uses […]

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How Kenya Exploded In My Heart

A letter from Harare by Petina Gappah   I once lived in a […]

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XXYX Africa

by Nick Mwaluko On the subject of voicing that inner scream that […]

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Buru Buru

Billy Kahora reflects on the state of the ‘estate’ of his Nairobi […]

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Palestine Journey

In February 2005, Ishtiyaq Shukri’s novel The Silent Minaret, won the first European […]

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L’impossible n’est pas Camerounais!

Kangsen Feka Wakai traces personal lineage, and the often blurred and disputed […]

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Beasts of No Nation

Whether immigrating, emigrating or just passing through, Africans suffer among the greatest indignities […]

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The cosmic lives and afterlives of Zebulon Dread

byAchal Prabhala Part 1: Elliot Josephs Elliot Josephs was born in 1958 […]

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Obi’s Nightmare

by Jamón y Queso translated by David Shook         […]

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It’s only a matter of acceleration now

by  Binyavanga Wainaina 1. I am about to interview Youssou N’Dour. I […]

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Not only our land but also our souls

Andile Mngxitama challenges historical and contemporary rhetoric that positions land theft in […]

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The End of Elections

by Paula Akugizibwe   Jose Saramago’s Seeing is no Arab spring. Revolutionary […]

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A Brief History of Throwing Shit

by Rustum Kozain.  Shit, muck, drek, kak. Faecal matter. We humans have a […]

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“Nice Nice” Will Get You Nowhere

Boniface Mwangi is a Kenyan photographer who pulls no punches in using […]

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A Brief History of Presidential Libraries

by Stacy Hardy Léopold Sédar Senghor, Aimé Césaire and George Pompidou were friends […]

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Will the Centre Hold?

In South Africa’s platinum belt, life and politics are as hard-scrabble as […]

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Method After Fela

by Akin Adesokan   “You reckon a guy just goes and cuts […]

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Fifty Years Of African Decolonisation

by Achille Mbembe (translated by Karen Press)   Here we are in 2010, fifty […]

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The skin I’m in: Afro-Bengali solidarity and possible futures

Naeem Mohaiemen reviews Vivek Bald’s Bengali Harlem and the Lost Histories of […]

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‘Nation Is A Skin Stretched Over The Bones Of The State’

Jon Soske struggles to pin down Hamid Parsani, the elusive, mercurial Iranian archaeologist, […]

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A Letter from Home

by E. C. Osondu   My Dear Son, Why have you not been […]

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Number 11

Chilean writer Roberto Bolaño muses on writing, borders, Latin American literature and the […]

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Wrestling With A Warlord

Louis Chude-Sokei narrates a story of Nigeria, of splintered identity, of exile, and of the Biafran War and its godfather – his godfather – the military strategist, strongman and celebrated hero, General Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu

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A Corpse and its Jurisdiction – a letter from Lagos

Akin Adesokan tropes on the detective genre after he stumbles on an […]

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When We Hear the Name of President

Nigerian poet Tanure Ojaide evokes a language of high stakes, hi-jinx, and […]

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George Osodi

George Osodi is a photographer from “the oil-rich Niger Delta region”. His images […]

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Interactions: A Strategy of Difference and Repetition

Interactions Interactions is an edited excerpt from filmmaker, writer and artist Aryan […]

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Guilt Trips

Kai Friese interrogates the colonial fantasy that lives on in the sententious […]

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The First Lady Syndrome

Mama Chantal Biya Yves Mintoogue* traces the nepotism and political patronage that […]

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Manufacturing the post-election peace: A reporter’s 2013 election diary

Parselelo Kantai watches as NGOs, the media and the state rally together […]

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A Civil Society Of African States

Paula Akugizibwe assumes observer status at the African Union and finds the […]

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Death by Memory [of Freedom]; Truth & Reconciliation

A tryptych in honour of Steve Biko. Firstly, Graeme Arendse, as his alter-ego Ramgee, presents In […]

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A Fieldguide for Female Interrogators

by Coco Fusco (illustrations: Dan Turner)     This graphic story previously […]

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America Will Always Blame…

Rigo 23, born Ricardo Gouveia, is a Portuguese muralist, painter, and political […]

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Who’s Free, Who’s Not, Who Was, Who Wasn’t, and Who’s Dead: And, Are You Sure You Know Which Way Is Up?

A Letter from Istanbul by Ed Pavlic   Trayvon remains underground, to my […]

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Suspect Sammy

A Letter from Toronto by Andrea Meeson   It’s another Monday morning after […]

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