Research Africa News: February 28th , 2021

Research Africa News: February 28th , 2021

Duke-UNICEF Innovation Accelerator.

Building on a 70-year history of innovating for children, UNICEF has partnered with Duke University to identify the world’s most pressing challenges for youth today—and to find the bold minds who can come up with the solutions. By pairing UNICEF’s commitment to children and global reach with Duke’s expertise in social innovation, the Innovation Accelerator will make a real and lasting difference in the lives of children around the world. Teams accepted into the Duke-UNICEF Innovation Accelerator will receive funding, mentorship, and other capacity building support from Duke University staff, faculty, students and our global networks.

For more details, visit this site:

From An Egyptian African Story

By Helmi Sharawy

An Important Meeting Muhammad Fayiq and his colleagues always visited the African Association unannounced, and all we knew then was that he was a senior figure in the world of the presidency and intelligence, personally close to the president of the republic. On one such visit, he noticed me carrying the newspapers that I had just collected from Professor Ishaq. He was kind and warm and voiced his surprise that I read such publications. Wondering how he could benefit from this, he asked Professor Ishaq whether I could present him with a good summary of the information they contained. His request was a boon for several reasons: these papers began to be delivered more regularly, I was benefitting from details about the world of the colonies (the British ones at least) that nobody in Egypt knew, and I was presenting an important source of information to a senior figure in the presidency. And, more important than all that, I was earning five pounds every month for my valuable work!

Read the research article here.

Lost for Decades, These Stunning Color Photos of Africa in the 1950s Have Finally Been Published

The United Nations sent photographer Todd Webb to capture eight African countries during a period of rapid industrialization—but the pictures he came back with included beauty, fashion, jubilation, and much more.

By Bill Shapiro January 28,2021

In 1955, two photographers, Guggenheim Fellowships in their back pockets, set off across America. One was Robert Frank, who returned from his epic road trip with the 27,000-plus images he would draw from to make his soon-to-be-iconic book, The Americans. The other was Todd Webb.

Read the rest of the story here.

The tortured, touching love saga of Cicely Tyson and Miles Davis

By Randall Roberts, staff writer, Feb. 1, 2021

Starting in the mid-1960s, Cicely Tyson had a decades-long, on-again, off-again romance with trumpeter Miles Davis that peaked with their 1981 marriage and ended in a 1989 divorce. Behind the scenes it was a turbulent relationship, according to both, but during their time in the spotlight, they were one of the most striking, stylish couples in America: she an Oscar-nominated, barrier-breaking dramatic actress and movie star known for an unwavering dedication to her craft; he a revered, charismatic jazz musician and innovator with an addictive personality and a bad reputation.

Read the rest of the story here.

Muslims in America: A forgotten history

For more than 300 years, Muslims have influenced the story of the US – from the ‘founding fathers’ to blues music today.

By Sylviane A Diouf, 10 Feb 2021

In the summer of 1863, newspapers in North Carolina announced the death of “a venerable African”, referred to, in a paternalistic manner, as “Uncle Moreau”. Omar ibn Said, a Muslim, was born in 1770 in Senegal and by the time of his death, he had been enslaved for 56 years. In 2021, Omar, an opera about his life, will premiere at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina.

Read the rest of the story here.

Free Article s from Miṣriqiyā, an international peer-reviewed African Studies Journal

Recently established by Faculty of Women, Ain Shams University (Egypt)

Welcome to Miṣriqiyā, an international peer-reviewed academic journal published quarterly by the Faculty of Women, Ain Shams University. Miṣriqiyā aims to publish high-quality research papers relevant to Africa. The journal publishes articles in the fields of anthropology, history, sociology, politics, geography, linguistics, and literary and cultural studies. Miṣriqiyā is published in both print and online versions. With an active editorial board that encompasses scholars from a variety of disciplines based at both Egyptian and international universities, the journal seeks to foster an interdisciplinary and global conversation from, with and about Africa. The journal is open to Arab and international scholars and guarantees a fair and accurate reviewing process. Submissions are accepted throughout the year.

Read the rest of the story here.

Mali fails to face up to the persistence of slavery

The Conversation, February 15, 2021

The internal African slave trade was officially abolished in colonial Mali in 1905. But a form of slavery – called “descent-based slavery” – continues today. This is when “slave status” is ascribed to a person, based on their ancestors having allegedly been enslaved by elite slave-owning families.

Read the rest of the story here.

‘Africapitalism’ and the limits of any variant of capitalism

By Roape, July 16, 2020

In a contribution to ROAPE’s debate on capitalism in Africa, Stefan Ouma provides a critical account of Africapitalism as well as an assessment of the future/s it imagines, what it silences and its potential to transform African economies. Ouma concludes that the ecologically destructive and dehumanizing architecture of our global economic system provides further evidence to condemn any variant of capitalism.

Read the rest of the story here.

NEW BOOKS ‫كتب جديدة

Buried in the Debris of Independence: The Life and Death of Rev Alexander Kutchona

[مدفون تحت أنقاض الاستقلال: حياة وموت القس ألكسندر كوتشونا]

Author: T.S.E. Katsulukuta

As a boy I heard my mother warn my father never to walk alone and never to come home late lest he be killed like Kutchona. But why could people kill an innocent pastor? For Alexander Kutchona God stood above politics and God came first in all areas of life. The Party leaders believed differently. Politics to them could not be separated from Church life and that the church should be used as a platform for the political agenda. They labeled him traitor and removed him out of their path and memory.

Publisher: Luviri Press, Malawi, 2021.

Writing the Black Decade: Conflict and Criticism in Francophone Algerian Literature

[عقد الشؤم: الصراع والنقد في الأدب الجزائري الفرنكوفوني]

Author: Joseph Ford

Writing the Black Decade examines how literature—and the way we read, classify, and critique literature—impacts our understanding of the world at a time of conflict. Using the bitterly-contested Algerian Civil War as a case study, Joseph Ford argues that, while literature is frequently understood as an illuminating and emancipatory tool, it can, in fact, restrain our understanding of the world during a time of crisis and further entrench the polarized discourses that lead to conflict in the first place. Ford demonstrates how Francophone Algerian literature, along with the cultural and academic criticism that has surrounded it, has mobilized visions of Algeria over the past thirty years that often belie the complex and multi-layered realities of power, resistance, and conflict in the region. Scholars of literature, history, Francophone studies, and international relations will find this book particularly useful.

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield, 2021.

Growing Wild: The Correspondence of a Pioneering Woman Naturalist from the Cape

[عن منابت القفار مراسلات سيدة رائدة في دراسة حياة الطبيعة في مدينة كيب]

Author/ (editor): Jasmin Rindlisbacher, Alan Cohen

Mary Elizabeth Barber (1818-1899), born in Britain, arrived in the Cape Colony in 1820 where she spent the rest of her life as a rolling stone, as she lived in and near Grahamstown, the diamond and gold fields, Pietermaritzburg, Malvern near Durban and on various farms in the eastern part of the Cape Colony. She has been perceived as ‘the most advanced woman of her time’, yet her legacy has attracted relatively little attention. She was the first woman ornithologist in South Africa, one of the first who propagated Darwin’s theory of evolution, an early archaeologist, keen botanist and interested lepidopterist. In her scientific writing, she propagated a new gender order; positioned herself as a feminist avant la lettre without relying on difference models and at the same time made use of genuinely racist argumentation. This is the first publication of her edited scientific correspondence. The letters – transcribed by Alan Cohen, who has written a number of biographical articles on Barber and her brothers – are primarily addressed to the entomologist Roland Trimen, the director of the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, London. Today, the letters are housed at the Royal Entomological Society in St Albans. This book also includes a critical introduction by historian Tanja Hammel who has published a number of articles and is about to publish a monograph on Mary Elizabeth Barber.

Publisher: Basler Afrika Bibliographien, Namibia, 2020.

Black Utopias: Speculative Life and the Music of Other Worlds

[ يوتوبيا السود: الحياة التأملية وموسيقى العوالم الأخرى]

Author: Jayna Brown

In Black Utopias Jayna Brown takes up the concept of utopia as a way of exploring alternative states of being, doing, and imagining in Black culture. Musical, literary, and mystic practices become utopian enclaves in which Black people engage in modes of creative worldmaking. Brown explores the lives and work of Black women mystics Sojourner Truth and Rebecca Cox Jackson, musicians Alice Coltrane and Sun Ra, and the work of speculative fiction writers Samuel Delany and Octavia Butler as they decenter and destabilize the human, radically refusing liberal humanist ideas of subjectivity and species. Brown demonstrates that engaging in utopian practices Black subjects imagine and manifest new genres of existence and forms of collectivity. For Brown, utopia consists of those moments in the here and now when those excluded from the category human jump into other onto-epistemological realms. Black people—untethered from the hope of rights, recognition, or redress—celebrate themselves as elements in a cosmic effluvium.

Publisher: Duke University Press, 2021.

Mobilizing Black Germany: Afro-German Women and the Making of a Transnational Movement

[نحو تعبئة الألمان السود]

Author: Tiffany N. Florvil

Tiffany N. Florvil examines the role of queer and straight women in shaping the contours of the modern Black German movement as part of the Black internationalist opposition to racial and gender oppression. Florvil shows the multifaceted contributions of women to movement making, including Audre Lorde’s role in influencing their activism; the activists who inspired Afro-German women to curate their own identities and histories; and the evolution of the activist groups Initiative of Black Germans and Afro-German Women. These practices and strategies became a rallying point for isolated and marginalized women (and men) and shaped the roots of contemporary Black German activism. Richly researched and multidimensional in scope, Mobilizing Black Germany offers a rare in-depth look at the emergence of the modern Black German movement and Black feminists’ politics, intellectualism, and internationalism..

Publisher: University of Illinois Press 2020.

Black Aliveness, or A Poetics of Being

[كينونة السود أو شاعرية الوجود]

Author: Kevin Quashie

In Black Aliveness, or A Poetics of Being, Kevin Quashie imagines a Black world in which one encounters Black being as it is rather than only as it exists in the shadow of anti-Black violence. As such, he makes a case for Black aliveness even in the face of the persistence of death in Black life and Black study. Centrally, Quashie theorizes aliveness through the aesthetics of poetry, reading poetic inhabitance in Black feminist literary texts by Lucille Clifton, Audre Lorde, June Jordan, Toni Morrison, and Evie Shockley, among others, showing how their philosophical and creative thinking constitutes worldmaking. This worldmaking conceptualizes Blackness as capacious, relational beyond the normative terms of recognition—Blackness as a condition of oneness. Reading for poetic aliveness, then, becomes a means of exploring Black being rather than nonbeing and animates the ethical question “how to be.” In this way, Quashie offers a Black feminist philosophy of being, which is nothing less than a philosophy of the becoming of the Black world.

Publisher: Duke University Press, 2021.

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