AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

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Thursday, June 5th, 2014

A Very Short Introduction to Peter Mutharika, Malawi’s new President

After a prolonged dispute, Peter Mutharika was sworn in as Malawi’s fifth president a few days ago. Whatever the ins and outs of the electoral process, nobody is in doubt that Joyce Banda, the darling of the international community, was decisively defeated at the ballot box. To find out more about Malawi’s new president and

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

The Friendship Between China and Mozambique Will Last Forever Like the Heavens and the Earth

In Maputo, the “Garden for Sculptors” behind the Museu Nacional de Arte on Avenida Ho Chi Minh has become a kind of prison yard for Mozambique’s various Ozymandiases, a semi-public dumping ground where colonial monuments now crumble...

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

The Dangers of a Single Book Cover: The Acacia Tree Meme and “African literature”

“Like so many (wildly varying) writers on Africa, Chimamanda Adichie gets the acacia tree sunset treatment. Whether Wilbur Smith or Wole Soyinka, Rider Haggard or Bessie Head, apparently you get the same cover imagery.” We’re obliged to...

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

#WhiteHistoryMonth: What Britain did in Kenya

The following is the full text of a letter written by David Larder to the Guardian newspaper last year, following the court settlement which saw the UK government pay out £2,670 to each of the 5,228 elderly...

Sunday, March 9th, 2014

#WhiteHistoryMonth: Audre Lorde’s Harlem childhood

As a very little girl, I remember shrinking from a particular sound, a hoarsely sharp, guttural rasp, because it often meant a nasty glob of grey spittle upon my coat or shoe an instant later. My mother...

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

“The passport that does not pass ports”

Not long ago I heard the philosopher Souleymane Bachir Diagne responding to a talk given by the literary critic Emily Apter titled “Translation, Checkpoints, Sovereign Borders.” Apter argues against the bourgeois fiction that globalization has turned everybody...

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