* The short film project, 15 Malaysia. You can watch all the films online.
* New York based cultural journalist Siddharta Mitter sits down with Youssou N’Dour to talk politics and music. Worth your downtime. The videos are online here.
* “Society of the Spectacle” by African Noise Foundation (Video).
* In one of the strangest ironies, the white South African in Canada who claimed that South African blacks would “persecutue” him if he returned home, and was then awarded refugee status by the Canadian government on the basis of his racist views of blacks, isn’t really “white.”
* Great online exhibition, “Black is Beautiful,” that details African presence in Dutch art and popular culture dating as far back as the fifteenth century. [link].
* If you can’t bear the racism, comedy and histrionics (all at the same time) of the current American health care reform “debate”, it is worth spending some time in the video archive of the excellent South African TV political talk show, “The Big Debate” (on the private channel, etv). Apart from the excellent debate on health care, there are also programs on Zimbabwe, “tradition,” and sexuality, among others.
* Chances are we’ll never know who murdered Dulcie September. The Cape Town born anti-apartheid activist was killed by a hit man or men while she was ANC representative in France in 1988 and hot on the trail of arms dealers supplying the Apartheid South African government. Now the ANC government has made promises of re-opening the case.
* After the Nigerian army murdered the leader of Boko Haram, a crazy northern Nigerian Islamic sect, American media (if they bothered to notice) were quick to print generally uninformed “analysis” (the link is to a piece on blog, “The Daily Beast”) linking Boko Haram to to Al Qaeda and the Taliban. But there were some exceptions: take for example these takes on events by historian Jean Herskovits (on the conservative “Foreign Policy” magazine’s blog of all places) and the excellent Scott Johnson in (again of all places) Newsweek.
* Where do obscure metals like tantalum, lithium, and platinum, for example, come from?
* Great audio archive at the Pan African Space Station (an annual music and culture festival run by Chimurenga Magazine in Cape Town through September and early October). My favorite: photographer George Hallett’s talk on designing book covers for British publisher Heinemann’s “African Writers Series” in the 1970s. (For details on this year’s festival, including listening to live music, click here).
* In one for the Hall of Fame of inappropriate advertising, Medicins Sans Frontiers has made a web advert for fundraising purposes that vocal critics of the “aid industry” feel finally crosses the line of acceptable taste. On this, I agree with the criticism.
* Link to Vox Africa, the European-based internet only news channel on all things African. (Great archive as well as live streaming).
* Oh, and surprise, Robert Mugabe’s security police like to beat up on the country’s women.