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.
Binyavanga Wainaina meets Youssou N’Dour in Dakar, learns to swim in the Atlantic and runs into a foul-mouthed Neneh Cherry.
Michael Jackson makes a come back in Nigeria, where Native Maqari and Biyi Bandele also revision Chinua Achebe‘s Girls at War.
Turning the page, in Equatorial Guinea, Ramón Esono (AKA Jamón y Queso) dreams of President Obiang Nguema’s nightmare: to live a single day as an ordinary citizen. Meanwhile, Dudumalingani Mqombothi and Buntu Fihla return to South Africa’s Eastern Cape looking for former Ciskei ruler, Oupa Gqozo. In Harare, Fungai Machirori has an Independence Day date with Robert Mugabe.
Then, from the Namib desert in Angola to an interrogation room on US soil, Victor Gama searches for Augusto Zita and inadvertently uncovers South Africa’s nuclear weapons programme. Willem Boshoff produces practical language for politics and governance. Lesego Rampolokeng interviews Mafika Gwala.
Across the continent, Paula Akugizibwe battles border blues while Kangsen Wakai explores citizenship from a Cameroonian perspective. Vincent Plisson illustrates nationality codes further asking jus sanguinis or jus soli?
Honouring late fathers, we doff our caps to departed greats: Annie Paul on Stuart Hall, Gaspar Orozco on Manuel Ahumada, the hair architecture of J.D.Okhai Ojeikere, Peter Clarke and Percy Sedumedi‘s art.
Supplementing the broadsheet, Chronic Books explores comics and their makers. Nawel Louerrad shows Canan Marasligil her Algerian dances, Mogorosi Motshumi highlights (the lack of) Black Consciousness in South African comics, and Tony McDermott‘s dubwise cover art for Scientist gets a reload. Bharath Murthy, Rakesh Khanna, and Sudarshan Purohit critique India’s thriving comics industry.
Nigeria’s cartoon and comics traditions are examined through Akin Adesokan‘s recollections of the bootylicious Ikebe Super, and Uzor Maxim Uzoatu‘s quest to find the all-action superhero from African Film, Lance Spearman. Where is The Spear?
The Chronic also features a special 8-page insert: the lost issue of Hei Voetsek! A reawakening of Zebulon Dread‘s cult, handcrafted periodical featuring graphics by Cape Town’s art collective, Burning Museum.
Produced in Cape Town, Harare, Johannesburg, Nairobi, Lagos, London, Douala, Dakar, Accra, Kigali and Kolkota, and distributed globally, the Chronic seeks to write Africa in the present and into the world at large, as the place in which we live, love and work.
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The Chronic is a quarterly pan African gazette, published by Chimurenga. For more information visit www.chimurengachronic.co.za and/or contact Chimurenga on +27(0)21 4224168 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Chimurenga Chronic is funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and the Goethe-Intitut. Other project partners include Heinrich Böll Foundation, Keleketla!, Cassava Republic Press, Glänta and Kwani Trust.