Africa: Politics and Societies South of the Sahara

Danny Hoffman takes Deleuze to West Africa

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa, Liberia, Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on April 19, 2013

WarMachinesA book that really inspired me recently is Danny Hoffman’s account of the Kamajor militia in Sierra Leone and other groups in Liberia during the wars of the 1990’s/early 2000’s. “The War Machines. Young Men and Violence in Sierra Leone and Liberia” takes the theoretical thinking of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari to an African conflict. “Recent trends in the reorganization of global security are laying the groundwork for continued mobilizations of exactly the kind represented by the Mano River War”, writes Hoffman, while calling the conflict a “laboratory of the future”.

I abstained from writing a review because everything is nicely summed up by Mats Utas already. Buy this book and be fascinated by a rare combination of investigative guerilla journalism and innovative theoretical thinking.

Book Review: African Conflicts and Informal Power (ed. by Mats Utas)

Posted in African Politics, Cote d'Ivoire, DR Congo, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Reviews, Sierra Leone, Uganda by ruben eberlein on April 19, 2013

ImageMy review of the recommendable book “African Conflicts and Informal Power. Big Men and Networks”, edited by Mats Utas of Uppsala’s Nordic Africa Insitute, has been published by Blätter des Informationszentrums 3. Welt (iz3w). Contributors to the five country and five thematic studies include Morten Bøås, Henrik Vigh, Mariam Persson, Maya Mynster Christensen, Karel Arnaut as well as other specialists on African conflicts. Editor Mats – an expert of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Somalia – has his own website; visit it for fresh and first-hand information on those countries as well as Mali, the DRC or Kenya (guest authors post there regularly).

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Sierra Leone: They Have no Choice

Posted in Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on January 3, 2013

My retrospection of the history of Sierra Leone since 1989 was published by Konkret (pdf here) in November 2012 shortly before the general elections in the country. My academic contribution to post-conflict Sierra Leone was distributed in 2006. Find it here as pdf.

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Sierra Leone: Tap Into Power of Artisanal Mining, Analysts Say

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa, Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on July 30, 2009

KOIDU, 29 July 2009 <IRIN> – As the Sierra Leone government, donors, mining companies and union members discuss how to reform industrial mining, analysts say they are overlooking the need for change in the informal or “artisanal” diamond mining sector, which employs some 100,000 people in the country. (more…)

The Seven Year Itch: Is it Finally Over in Sierra Leone?

Posted in African Politics, Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on June 17, 2009

kroobayfreetownIn 2002, Sierra Leone’s regional war officially ended. But deep social, economic and political problems remain. Abuse of power, the drug trade and youth unemployment are considered to be the biggest challenges in Sierra Leone. Three years ago, I finished a paper entitled ‘”We don’t believe in politics, we believe in reality” – Social domination and its perception amongst young people in today’s Sierra Leone’.
You can download it here (112 kb, pdf).

‘It‘s important to tell the story of Sierra Leone’

Posted in African Politics, Culture, Global Africa, Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on April 9, 2009

Rodney P is one of Britain’s leading rappers. In 2005 he recorded a documentary on Sierra Leone. I talked with him in June 2006 about music and its significance for the West African country. Read the interview here. (more…)

Listen to the Riddim Killa

Posted in African Politics, Culture, Global Africa, Sierra Leone by ruben eberlein on February 23, 2009

If you happen to live in London, you are best placed to visit one of the shows of Rodney P, one of Britain’s best rappers. The Riddim Killa will play various concerts in early May. In 2006, I had an interview with him about his music and his interest in Sierra Leone. Read it here at Jungle World (in German), an English version will follow.