Some researchers and academics bemoan Chinese colonisation of Africa. However, Wole Soyinka has a different take; during his conversation at Cape Town’s Book Lounge in August 2010 (during Cape Town’s Book Fair), he said that China offers an alternative possibility that African nations can negotiate with, as long as we do not find ourselves in/position ourselves in the beggar’s pose:

“I know nothing about business, by the way. But as long as we are in a cut-throat, capitalistic nation,” the Chinese simply provide another opportunity and option – “as long as we are not substituting one form of indenture for another.”

Now comes a feature story by Xan Rice of The Guardian, on “the Chinese invasion”.

RIce asks some of the approximately one million Chinese, “from engineers to chefs,” who moved to work in Africa, to find out “why.” Presumably the same reason that so many immigrants move to places they regard as wild, furious, and sometimes barbaric. Here we go again.–Neelika Jayawardane.

Further Reading

No more caricatures

Engaging seriously with Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s life could help us understand how South Africa got where it is and where it’s going.