AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

Mali

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Thursday, June 19th, 2014

“How was Africa?”

“Welcome back to civilization,” a family member said, slapping my shoulder. “How was Africa?” That was the refrain I encountered most frequently upon returning to the United States after conducting a year of fieldwork amongst northern Malian internally displaced persons and refugees. I’d been away for all of 2013. During the first six months I

Monday, January 20th, 2014

How a coup d’état drove a scholar to social media

Call me a curmudgeon, but I had never really understood the value of social media. I didn’t see the point of mundane tweets and posts on the lives of the glitterati, or the need to share personal...

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Mali (and France) a year later

A year ago, on January 11, 2013, France launched Operation Serval, sending 4000 troops into Mali. At the time, many supported this intervention. According to one poll, as many as 96% of Malians initially supported the French...

Saturday, December 7th, 2013

Mandela had an Ethiopian passport under the name David Motsomayi. Where did he go?

We don't live in a world of heroes, but at rare moments we celebrate those who emerge from the shadows to push them further back. I don't know if Nelson Mandela had heroes. He must have done....

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

My Favorite Photographs: Arnaud Contreras

The Sahara is changing fast. Still a beautiful desert but not just that. Most populated cities such as Tamanrasset or Timbuktu are microcosms that reveal all the problems of those former touristic regions: threats of terrorism, trafficking,...

Monday, August 12th, 2013

Mali’s Elections: First Thoughts on Round Two

In Mali, it’s taken to be a good sign when a journey begins under the rain. Yesterday’s voting in Bamako began under torrents, keeping people from the polls. When the skies cleared, the voters turned out for...

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