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Somewhere between a scream and a lullaby

In a city where the boundaries between life and death are laid bare, artists are birthing new spaces for dreaming ‘other ways of breathing’. Stacy Hardy reports from Kinshasa.

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Sammy Baloji exhibition – ‘Mémoire’

‘Mémoire’ shows the heritage of colonial times and at the same time points towards the huge economical gain colonial masters had from the mines.

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Costa Diagne et Les Hommes de la danse

par Gabrielle Chomentowski

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CONFESSIONS OF A CLOSET SOYINKA PLAGIARIST

A letter from Ibadan by Harry Garuba

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REVIEW: AND THE BOOKS LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER

Harry Garuba reviews reissues of Amos Tutuola’s writings

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CHIMURENGA@20: IN PRAISE OF INDIGENOUS AFRICAN WORDFORM

Have African literary forms been lost in a morass of European culture? For more than half a century Taban Lo Liyong has lamented thus.

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I’M NOT WHO YOU THINK I’M NOT

Serubiri Moses reflects on Binyavanga Wainaina’s refusal to fit neatly into neat identities.

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I am a homosexual, Mum

A lost chapter from One Day I Will Write About This Place

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CHIMURENGA@20: Midway Between Silence and Speech

The art and incarnation of Justine Gaga.

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CHIMURENGA@20: MURIMI MUNHU

Panashe Chigumadzi travels to the rural Zimbabwe of her ancestors, onto land stolen and cash-cropped by a privileged minority under racist white rule.

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CHIMURENGA@20: GENRES OF HUMAN

In his book, The Sound of Culture: Diaspora and Black Technopoetics, Louis Chude-Sokei samples freely from history, music, literature and science, conjuring new meanings from dead texts, to build an echo chamber where the discourses of race and technology collide

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IN MEMORIAM: OMOSEYE BOLAJI (1964-2022)

We remember Nigerian-born writer, Omoseye Bolaji (1964-2022), and his immense contribution to the growth of African literature in South Africa, and particularly in the Free State, where he lived.

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Ready, Willing & Able

Lolade Adewuyi profiles one of the continent’s most successful football coaches – the Big Boss, as he is widely referred to – and considers the arguments for more faith, more respect and more investment in the abilities of home-grown trainers.

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ALL I CAN SAY FOR NOW

By Jean-Christophe Lanquetin (translated by Dominique Malaquais)

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READING FRED HO

Gwen Ansell and Salim Washington celebrate the revolutionary life, language and hard-ass leadership of an unconventional saxophonist, composer and generous collaborator.

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Translating Tram 83

Roland Glasser meets author Fiston Mwanza Mujila in Paris while getting to […]

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WHO WILL SAVE THE SAVIOURS?

A close gaze at the collective apathy that killed Dr. Sebi

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From Seven Modes for Hood Science

The black spirit is universally sick with dissimulation and at the same time triumphant in its incessantly performed healing, having turned suffering into a kind of spectacular wellness

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THIRD TRANSITION

Shoks Mzolo and Bongani Kona trace the path of South Africa’s transformation from a criminal apartheid state to a criminal neoliberal state

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War and Spirits

By Kirby Mania The timing of the publication of Confession of the […]

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You Have No Power Here

Karen Press reviews three first collections from publishing house uHlanga that add welcome breadth to the range of South African poetry

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Between the Lines of an Unpatriotic Presidential Pre-Recorded Address

FOURTH REPUBLIC 19 conducts a post-mortem on not-so-presidential minutes in recorded Nigerian history.

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The Enemy in Her Imagination: A Fable

Rahel first met the young, 11-year old boy, on December 21, 2006. That was the day after the war in Somalia was declared.

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THE SUMMER OF ’69

Writer Pierre Crépon selects recordings illustrating his essay on the American avant-garde jazz in Paris in 1969.

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Remember Glissant

Moses März writes of Édouard Glissant, Martinican, poet and compatriot of the more celebrated Aimé Césaire and Frantz Fanon

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CHIMURENGA CHRONIC – IMAGI-NATION NWAR – OUT NOW!

A new issue of Chimurenga’s Chronic – out now. imagi-nation nwar – […]

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On the Digital Application of Ancestral Work

African spirituality as practiced digitally was amplified by COVID-19.

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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 a way to ensure a paternalist and pernicious stranglehold on the economies of a vast region of the continent.

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Creative Urban Momentum: Witnessing the Black Unity Trio

In anticipation of the release of Black Unity Trios’ legendary album, Al Fatihah, Hasan Abdur-Razzaq recalls witnessing their rehearsals in the late 1960s.

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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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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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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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We Make Our Own Food (April 2017)

In this issue, we put food back on the table: to restore the interdependence between the mouth that eats and the mouth that speaks, and to delve deeper into the subtle tactics of resistance and private practices that make food both a subversive art and a site of pleasure.

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The Invention of Zimbabwe (April 2018)

14 November 2017. News breaks of a coup d’état underway in Zimbabwe. Tanks, armoured vehicles and military personnel are seen patrolling the capital, Harare. The images send shock waves through social media, traditional broadcast news networks and diplomatic channels

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The Chronic (July 2014)

For the new issue of Chimurenga’s pan African gazette, the Chronic, the focus is on graphic stories; comic journalism. Blending illustrations, photography, written analysis, infographics, interviews, letters and more, visual narratives speak of everyday complexities in the Africa in which we live.

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The Chronic (April 2016)

In the fall of 2015, universities across South Africa were engulfed by fires ignited by students’ discontent with the racial discrimination and colonialism that still defines the country’s institutes of higher education.

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The Chronic (August 2013)

Writers in the broadsheet include Jon Soske, Paula Akugizibwe, Yves Mintoogue, Adewale Maja-Pearce, Parsalelo Kantai, Fred Moten & Stefano Harney, Cedric Vincent, Deji Toye, Derin Ajao, Tony Mochama, Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah,Agri Ismaïl, Lindokuhle Nkosi, Bongani Kona, Stacy Hardy, Emmanuel Induma, Ugochukwu-Smooth Nzewi, Lolade Ayewudi, Simon Kuper and many others.

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The Chronic (December 2013)

This edition of the Chronic, offers forays into interlaced subjects of power, resistance, protest, mobilisation, mobility and belonging. Marked by an urgency to unsettle divides between opportunism and opportunity, life and liberation, here and there, and then and now-now, the newspaper acts as a platform from which to engage the practices, dilemmas and possibilities of different world.

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New Cartographies (March 2015)

We understand the role of cartography as a tool of imperialism. However, in this edition of the Chronic, we ask: what if maps were made by Africans for their own use, to understand and make visible their own realities or imaginaries?

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Muzmin (July 2015)

In the minds of many, the Sahara exists as a boundary between the Maghreb and “Black Africa”. History and our lived experience tell a different story. The latest issue of Chimurenga’s pan African gazette, the Chronic,

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The Corpse Exhibition [and Other Graphic Stories] (August 2016)

This issue of Chimurenga’s pan-African quarterly gazette, the Chronic, explores ideas around mythscience, science fiction and graphic storytelling. Like previous editions of the Chronic,

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The Chronic (April 2013)

A 48-page newspaper and 40-page stand-alone books review magazine featuring writing, art and photography inflected by the workings of innovation, creativity and resistance.

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On Circulations and the African Imagination of a Borderless World (October 2018)

What is the African imagination of a borderless world? What are our ideas on territoriality, borders and movement? How to move beyond so-called progressive discourse on “freedom of movement”

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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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Yellow Fever, Nko?

Skin bleaching is often described as a manifestation of ‘colo-mentality’. However, argues Bibi Bakare-Yusuf, mimesis here is both an affirmation and a contestation of power.

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They Won’t Go When I Go

A Manifesto/ Meditation on State of Black Archives in America and throughout the Diaspora by Harmony Holiday

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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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Monumental Failures

By Dominique Malaquais

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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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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 – General Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu

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Who Kill Kabila – Angola Mix

We tune into radio trottoir, radio one battery, radio 33, boca boca to get the word on the street from Angola.

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SALUT GLISSANT

“Nothing is true, everything is alive.”
Moses März, imagines a conversation between Edoaurd Glissant and Patrick Chamoiseau about the Philosophy of Relation.

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IN MEMORIAM: Binyavanga Wainaina (1971 – 2019)

A friend, a Chimurenga founding father, an award winning writer, author, journalist, chef, lover, a literary revolutionary and an inspiration. We pay tribute.

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The Chronic: Who Killed Kabila

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.

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WHO KILLED KABILA: CAST OF CHARACTERS

The cast list of actors and character who make an appearance in the issue includes everyone from Ché Guevara and psychiatrist, political theorist and Frantz Fanon, to Rashidi Muzele, the assassin who pulled the trigger and many more.

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No Pass, But Nine Passports

n her 30 years of exile, Miriam Makeba redefined pan Africanism. She was a woman with nine passports and honorary citizenship in 10 countries. 

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POETS WITH GUNS: A CONVERSATION WITH CHIRIKURE CHIRIKURE

Chirikure Chirikure means “that which is far is very far.” He is […]

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HIKIMA – a letter from Zaria

She eyed me. A thing wet around her eyes, like water from the evening rain. Lateef, she said, an incurable emphasis on both syllables: Lah-teef.

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Search Sweet Country

In conversation with Binyavanga Wainaina, Kojo Laing talks to a future Ghana by exposing its present, full of the jargons and certainties of one dimensional nation building.

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Imagined Waters

Through the poetry of its mariners – the singers of its rivers […]

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Searching for Rotimi- A Letter From London

Rotimi Fani-Kayode died 29 years ago (21 December 1989), in exile, after […]

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The Agronomist

Stacy Hardy follows the path of JJ Machobane, the social visionary, writer and agronomist from Lesotho, who challenged orthodox colonial thinking about land and land use.

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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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New Cartographies

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

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Where Is This Place

Keguro Macharia asks how might one describe where One Day I Will Write About This Place lives as it travels?

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Nothing was impossible for a writer like him

Billy Kahora on Binyavanga Wainaina’s Work

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How To Be A Dictator

Binyavanga Wainaina presents 16 Rules for Big Man aspirations

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WHAT AFRICAN WRITERS CAN LEARN FROM CHEIKH ANTA DIOP

In a testament to Cheikh Anta Diop, Boubacar Boris Diop raises radical views on creative writing, a challenge to what he laments as our literary Sahara.

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AT HOME WITH ZEBULON DREAD/SWAMI SITARAM

For over a decade, the man born as Elliot Josephs terrorised Cape […]

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The Impossible Death of an African Crime Buster

Spearman… Lance Spearman – the name synonymous with the intrepid hero of […]

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The Emperor of Kinshasa’s Street Comics

by Nancy Rose Hunt Beginning nearly fifty years ago, in 1968, Kinshasa […]

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PORTRAITS OF POWER

Farai Mudzingwa writes about the power vested within the four corners of the presidential portrait, and the struggle not only to dislodge the presidential image, but also to claim it, to frame it anew.

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A Brief History of Fufu Pounding

The preparation of fufu is a far from the drudgery and waste of time bemoaned by the World Bank.

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No Congo, No Technology

Post-disciplinary artist, Maurice Mbikayi, was born in Kinshasa, in 1974. His country […]

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In Bond We Trust?

Nearly a decade on from the worst postcolonial turmoil that saw their currency devalued by thousands of percentage points, Zimbabweans have had to brace themselves as the government introduced another face-saving tender.

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CHIMURENGA@20: NO ONE WILL SAVE YOU – REMEMBERING KENYA’S KARL MARX

Student movements in many African countries have historically confronted contradictions of colonial and post-colonial rule. In Kenya, these movements sent generations of young people into the streets, underground, into exile or death.

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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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African Cookbooks and Excess Luggage

By Yemisi Aribisala There is a sense of justice and spirit of resignation […]

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How to Wear a Kitchen

Yemisi Aribisala ponders the small-minded commentary on the room best kept by […]

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Nollywood Kiss

Is kissing a Nigerian habit or merely the preoccupation of neurotic French […]

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The Way I See It: We Need New Myths

By Shabaka Hutchings Probing the musical narratives of jazz and hip-hop, saxophonist […]

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Writing Football

By Juan Villoro It’s unlikely you’ll be a fan of any sport […]

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The Memory of Victory

Ingrained in the DNA of every male growing up in Senegal is the tradition of Laamb, the Wolof designation for the sport – and by extension the business – of wrestling.

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“That Guy No Be Ordinary”

Yemisi Aribisala grapples with the real-time significance of the artist Victor Ehikhamenor, one of his most celebrated works, “The Flower of a Girl”, and the nonsensical brandishing of the banal in the context of Nigerian art as big business.

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CHIMURENGA@20: SISTER OUTSIDER

Yemisi Aribisala rails against the new fundamentalism cresting the wave of global feminism sweeping Nigeria. She challenges the gender imperialism implicit in its aspiration to uniform ideas of celebrity, power, erudition and beauty.

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Creating Theatre: A George Hallett Photo Essay

“Exile demands contemplation because it is unavoidably real for those who experience […]

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Archie Shepp’s Shirt Suggests

By Dominique Malaquais and Cédric Vincent

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Rumble in the Nile

The Nimeiri era remains one of the most beguiling and contradictory in the country’s history. It defined so much of what was to come.

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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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CHIMURENGA@20: SECULAR STORIES

Authenticity counts for something; the confidence that authenticity bestows counts for even more.

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The New Reading

Some argue that the new media has forever altered our attention span, that the experience of being completely lost and absorbed, an experience they say you only got from a printed book, has disappeared.

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CHIMURENGA@20: WAITING FOR WAME

I am hungry. Tempted. In pain. I reach for the pack. Pop out another capsule. One minute. Ten minutes. Twenty minutes. The pain has reduced to a dull throbbing. I am floating.

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A Petition for Mongo Beti

Patrice Nganang recalls the duel between politics and the literary sphere in 1990s Yaoundé – a time when the campaign for ‘democracy’ exposed the chiasmus that is the Cameroonian intelligence, and the words of Mongo Beti ignited a movement for dissent, return and reconstruction.

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All That is Solid Melts into PR

Mark Fisher speaks to Bongani Kona about the social, economic and cultural totality of late capitalism, the pervasive cynicism in which we seem to be mired, the omnipresence of PR and the possibility of countering it all by re-igniting a belief in the public good.

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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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Honouring Somaliness

Binyavanga Wainaina and Diriye Osman sit down in south London to speak of honouring Somaliness, navigating the globe as a homeless writer, freedom and love.

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XXYX Africa

LGBT Africa held two truths: you fuck, you die.

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Poets Are Hurting: Lesego Rampolokeng in Conversation with Mafika Gwala

Mafika Gwala emerged as a significant writer in the 1970s during his […]

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CHIMURENGA@20: BEASTS OF NO NATION

Whether immigrating, emigrating or just passing through, Africans suffer among the greatest indignities of cross-border travel, abroad and on the continent. Paula Akugizibwe recounts how the hand-me-down tools of divide and rule perpetuate the abuse.

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It’s only a matter of acceleration now

This is how the earth is arranged, or this is how the kora arranged and made the universe, and songs of numbers and words made souls…. Are you ready to interview Youssou N’Dour?

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Birthing the American

Yemisi Aribisala explores, with mixed emotions, the enduring opportunism of a Nigerian elite that ensures that generations of children claim US birthright. Despite the assumed status that goes with being born “abroad”, the American dream, she argues, is in fact only a Nigerian backup plan.

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Banyana Banyana

As footballers and coaches typically spiel, it’s a game of two halves. […]

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Americanah and other definitions of supple citizenships

Yemisi Aribisala reads the new novel by Nigeria’s ‘woman of letters’ and encounters […]

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Call for an Archive of AfroSonics

The collective improvisations of black America – and their profound impact on poetry and sound – are near impossible to find in the annals of US academe. In fact, their absence is as stark as the control of archiving is white, writes Harmony Holiday.

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DIPALO a mixtape for those who practice counting

DIPALO: a mixtape for those who practice counting, composed, arranged and performed by Muyanga, was released as an audio supplement to issue 16 of Chimurenga magazine

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Emerging from the Dark?

Mafika Gwala speaks to Andrea Meeson about not living in the shadows.

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