Category Archives: History

From Pocahontas to Thandi Modise: ‘Good girls go to Heaven. Bad girls go everywhere.’

Tweet For this 9 August Women’s Day celebration in South Africa, I look at the role of women in international politics. I invoke the images of Pocahontas and Thandi Modise. In doing so I re-visit the invocation of Pocohantas by Cynthia Enloe in “Bananas, beaches and bases: making feminist sense of International Politics” (1990), where… Continue Reading

Unpacking Africa’s Intangible Heritage: Aesthetic Africa

Tweet I have a sculpture in my living room. A wooden, beautifully defined totem pole-like pair of eagles grappling with a nice portion of wriggly fish. I knew when I first saw it on a dusty street five years ago, car-less and on a budget, that I would do whatever was necessary within legal and… Continue Reading

African languages under threat: What is killing African languages?

Tweet One may be wondering about the difference between an endangered language and an extinct one. The thing is that there is no difference because they both lead to the same result: extinction. A loss of a language is a loss of a large and unique repertoire of human knowledge. An endangered language usually has… Continue Reading

Black on Black Hi’s: Can’t We all Just Get Along?

Tweet First I’ll start by saying I am an African American. I love that description especially given the types of names Black Americans have been called. But beyond that legacy it has come to mean a lot more to me now that I’ve been to the African continent a few times and had a chance… Continue Reading

The Democratic Republic Congo Fifty Years Later: Conversations with Patrice Lumumba

Tweet Dear Patrice, In the last letter that you addressed to your wife Pauline from Camp Hardy Prison, you wrote: “To my children whom I leave and whom perhaps I will see no more, I wish that they be told that the future of the Congo is beautiful and that it expects from them, as… Continue Reading

The Bastardisation of African Knowledge, transforming colonial minds and re-visiting the significance of Freedom in South Africa: Fundamental (and forgotten) Lessons from Steve Biko.

Tweet Wednesday the 27th of April 2011 marks the 17th annual Freedom Day in South Africa, a historic day in the country’s history signifying the first ever non-racial democratic elections and the coming into effect of the country’s first ever Constitution with a justiciable Bill of Rights that put an end to over three centuries… Continue Reading