AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

France

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

#Hashtag Politics

Boima blogged here recently about UNICEF’s efforts to raise awareness about the drought in the Sahel; what he described as “a step in the right direction towards facilitating genuine empathy, and away from the sensationalistic portrayals that have come to define awareness campaigns.” Then there are campaigns like this one by the French Action contre

Monday, May 7th, 2012

The other African election, Round 2: Sarkozy K.O.’d

Paris 20ème, Sunday, 8 p.m. Shouts, people banging pots from the windows, children running in the streets—in our neighborhood of workers and immigrants everybody else is upstairs, glued to the television. A man—African by his accent—is declaiming...

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Parisian Africa: The artistic intersections of the Métropole

Guest Post by Lara N. Dotson-Renta Paris has always been renowned for its culture and support of the arts. Yet, as France has grown into an ever more pluralistic society, the traditional image of what constitutes art...

Friday, April 13th, 2012

The 19th New York African Film Festival: “Relentless”

"Relentless" is fundamentally a film about Lagos. About how director Andy Okoarafor sees it. In Okoarafor's rendering, Lagos is a hard, inhospitable city, where people look stressed out, always hustling. They're always on the move. But Okoarafor also...

Saturday, April 7th, 2012

The racial politics of Tuareg nationalism

Like good nomads ought to be, Tuareg desert blues super group Tinariwen are on tour. I hear good things about them as individuals, and I’m sure they’re all fine human beings, but I’m not a big fan....

Thursday, April 5th, 2012

Paris is a Continent N°11

Sage poet Zoxea & Busta Flex battle it out in ‘C’est nous les reustas’: Youssoupha (a name you must be familiar with by now), Indila and Skalpovich Dreamin’:

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

If Africa really is “a country” …

From a reader: If Africa really is “a country” for many Americans, then that country is somewhere few outside the military have even heard of … Djibouti: AFRICOM (much of it apparently run out of a rural...

Friday, March 16th, 2012

Friday Music Bonus Edition

Five for the weekend. First up, via AfriPOP!, Nomsa Mazwai’s new video for her song ‘Nguwe.’ (The video comes with a translation.) Then, Vox Sambou (below) and The Narcicyst tell how they read ‘Article 14′ and its relation...

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

Music Break. Gaël Faye

Bujumbura-born Gaël Faye (you know him from the Paris hip hop outfit Milk Coffee & Sugar) returned to Burundi to record this video with singer Francis Muhire for ‘Petit Pays’ (a first single off his upcoming ‘autobiographic’...

Saturday, March 10th, 2012

Paris a Continent … the Nike edition

I like the tone and aesthetic of this commercial. It makes Paris look like parts of Brooklyn. We’ll leave the close reading for another day (the relationship between identity politics and consumption for example), except to note...

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Music Break. Gasandji

DRC born, France based Gasandji‘s “Na lingui yo.”

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

Black Bazar

Alain Mabanckou’s 2009 novel Black Bazar spoke successfully to and about the African diaspora in France, their daily hustle, fashion, style and language. All through the eyes of the Congolese migrant nicknamed ‘Fessologue’, sapeur and pub philosopher,...

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

Music Break. Vincent Segal & Ballaké Sissoko

French cellist Vincent Segal and kora master Ballaké Sissoko (from Mali) recorded the 2009 ‘Chamber Music’ album in Salif Keita’s Moffou Studio. Three years later, this is their Take Away Show. (First part here.)

Friday, January 27th, 2012

The whole ‘Afrobeats’ thing

Two recent features in the mainstream British media turned out to be enough to spur some debate about the so-called "Rise of the Afrobeats" in the U.K. The Guardian interviewed DJ Abrantee (quoting Abrantee as him having...

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012

France’s first sitcom with an all-black cast

“Tchip Show” is the first situation comedy show on French TV revolving mainly around characters of Afro-Caribbean and African backgrounds living in Paris. Now in its fourth season, it made its debut as a webseries about five years...

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

Paris is a Continent N°7

My friends and the musicians we listen to--we're mostly the children of immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean--prefer Francois Hollande and the Socialists over Sarkozy, but know Hollande won't win.

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

The Year of Frantz Fanon

Four moments which rocked France this year were the cases against rapper Youssoupha and IMF Head Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the unveiling of the Paris exhibiton Human Zoos: The Invention of the Savage, curated by former French footballer Lilian...

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Massalia

French IAM member Akhenaton and Faf Larage (brother to other IAM rapper Shurik’n) clearly had fun producing their We Luv New York album this year. They make videos too. We’ll give you a full translation of the...

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Music Break. Kouyaté-Neerman

We read that the balafon is being considered for inclusion on Unesco’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list. Lansiné Kouyaté knows how to play it.

Friday, November 18th, 2011

Black France

A few months before the presidential elections in France appears this ‘beautiful book’, La France noire, Trois siècles de présences (‘Black France, Three centuries of presence’ (eds.) Pascal Blanchard, Sylvie Chalaye, Eric Deroo, Dominique Thomas & Mahamet...

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

Demba Ba

Demba Ba has a habit of falling to his knees post-goal and praying.

Monday, November 14th, 2011

Omar Sy, French movie icon

By Abdourahman Waberi Released only a week ago, ‘Intouchables’ the film (by Eric Toledano & Olivier Nakache, France, length: 1h52min) is having the most amazing success in France since Harry Potter hit. Supported by a duo of...

Sunday, November 13th, 2011

Paris is a Continent, N°2

This is the second in my weekly series of popular music from my hometown.  Here’s a link to my first contribution: Paris, France. N°1. This week’s it’s the world of popular rap. Algiers-born, Montreal-raised Zaho is big in Paris...

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

African rugby isn’t just the Springboks

Written by Elliot Ross A couple of weekends ago, just before the Rugby World Cup final kick off, the French rugby team memorably faced down the New Zealand All Blacks’ haka. They joined hands and advanced towards...

Monday, November 7th, 2011

The uncomfortable presence of Franz Fanon

Still today, as David Macey argues, Frantz Fanon is a great “source of embarrassment, both to some who would claim the revolutionary Fanon as their own and to a French republicanism that prides itself on its universalism.”...

Saturday, November 5th, 2011

Paris is a Continent, N°1

What do the masses listen to in Paris? I’ve promised to do an occasional round-up of what’s popular on the streets and on phones (and in car stereo systems) of the French capital. Here’s round one. It’s...

Monday, October 17th, 2011

The French Algerian Massacre

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the “French-Algerian Massacre,” when at least 200 Algerians living in Paris were killed by French police and another 11,000 or so were arrested while protesting for Algerian independence from France. Nabila...

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

‘Emerging’ Photographers

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Music Break / Nëggus & Kungobram

Kungobram, an ensemble of French musicians, has teamed up with Togolese slammer Nëggus (here reminiscing about “his land”). Their live act sounds slick. And they’re asking for our help to wrap up their first album:

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

“Law and Order: SVU” does DSK

In case you missed it, the cop and lawyers show, “Law and Order,” opened its 13th season last week with a transparent plot based on the Dominique Strauss Kahn rape case.  They didn’t even try hard:  Roberto...

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