Africa: Politics and Societies South of the Sahara

Critical Whiteness: An Old Critique for a New German Debate

Posted in African Politics, Culture, Global Africa by ruben eberlein on April 28, 2013

Political activists in Germany are six steps behind again when it comes to discussions about racism and imaginations of Africa and Otherness at large that moved the US and UK, for instance, decades ago. And make the same mistakes again. The debate about “Critical Whiteness” is getting more and more a carneval of identity politics negatively connoted, self-flagellation and victimization. The latest example is the aggressive intervention of political activists at a taz-sponsored event on racism. There is antivenom against this kind of thinking, and it is out for eleven years now: Achille Mbembe’s “African Modes of Self-Writing”, still relevant and already a modern classic. Read it if you don’t know it!

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Nneka: Effusing a Message From Warri, Niger Delta, to the World

Posted in African Politics, Culture, Global Africa, Nigeria by ruben eberlein on October 11, 2009

nneka<UK Independent> It’s been four years since Nneka Egbuna emerged from Germany as the gung-ho Nigerian rapper/singer/songwriter with a socio-political bone to pick, and yet she’s still indifferent to fame. “I’m just happy that more than one person listens to me,” shrugs the 27-year-old when asked if she has the desire to break the US now that she’s been recognised by the Mobos as the Best African Act, and Channel O, the premier African music network based in South Africa. “It’s not about being popular. It’s about the love of doing the music. It’s about giving people hope; it’s not about me, it’s not about Nneka herself, it’s about having a voice and it’s about having a message behind the voice.” Full text here. Promo video for Nneka’s latest release here.

Anthropologically Speaking – A View from Nigeria and Germany

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa, Nigeria by ruben eberlein on August 25, 2009

Olumide Abimbola, a Nigerian PhD student in Social Anthropology, writes in his column ‘Anthropologically Speaking’ for Business Day newspaper about such different things as a visit to the Buchenwald concentration camp, female husbands, driving around with an external license plate in Lagos or Berlin and much more. Check it out!

Nigeria’s Yar’Adua in Italy: The Price of Joining the Big Eight

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa, Nigeria by ruben eberlein on July 9, 2009

What was the price that the Nigerian President Umaru Yar’Adua had to pay in order to be invited to the G8 summit in L’Aquila, Italy? Sahara Reporters think that his invitation has to do with the restoration of lucrative contracts for Germany’s electronic giant Siemens in Nigeria. The enterprise was blacklisted for paying bribes to government officials, but the ban was lifted recently. Here is the part of an interview with Nigeria’s President published by The Guardian (Lagos) where Yar’Adua spoke about the advocacy of Angela Merkel for Siemens. (more…)

La Connexion Berlin-Dakar Provides for Groovy Summer 09 Beats

Posted in African Politics, Culture, Global Africa, Senegal by ruben eberlein on April 24, 2009

108110567Sarabah – Tales from the Flipside of Paradise is the brand new first record of Senegal-born artist Sister Fa (to be released in May by Piranha Musik, read interview here). She lives in Berlin and raps in Wolof, Manding, Jola and French about the life of Senegalese women and soldiers, about Aids, her own experiences, and much more. The twelve songs on her nicely designed CD give us a good idea about the vibrancy of West Africa’s hiphop scene where Western culture and African heritage merge. (more…)

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Talking about Space in Africa

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa by ruben eberlein on April 2, 2009

A major conference on African issues under the motto ‘Respacing Africa’ will take place in Leipzig, Germany, between 4 and 7 June 2009. The Third European Conference on African Studies (ECAS) will host some 1,100 academics and interested persons to discuss ‘dynamic changes in Africa from a variety of multi-disciplinary perspectives’, says Ulf Engel, Professor of African Politics at the University of Leipzig. (more…)