Every February in the U.S. schools, McDonald’s, television, corporations, the advertising industry, celebrate Black History Month. The whole thing is a charade. That black people don’t get a break from police brutality, plain murder, red lining, profiling or plain neglect, whether here, in the UK or places like South Africa, doesn’t matter. In 2007, Gary Younge (he is an ally) suggested that what we all needed is a White History Month. Gary reminded us: “So much of Black History Month takes place in the passive voice. Leaders ‘get assassinated,’ patrons ‘are refused’ service, women ‘are ejected’ from public transport. So the objects of racism are many but the subjects few. In removing the instigators, the historians remove the agency and, in the final reckoning, the historical responsibility … There is no month when we get to talk about [James] Blake [the white busdriver challenged by Rosa Parks]; no opportunity to learn the fates of J.W. Milam and Roy Bryant, who murdered Emmett Till; no time set aside to keep track of Victoria Price and Ruby Bates, whose false accusations of rape against the Scottsboro Boys sent five innocent young black men to jail. Wouldn’t everyone–particularly white people–benefit from becoming better acquainted with these histories?” So, dear readers–in the service of good sense and because we love celebrations–this March is the inaugural White History Month on Africa is a Country. Yes, we’re a few days late, we know, but good things take time some time. Stay tuned.
The radical politics of the professional middle classes—too often found full of rhetoric, but short on action—are explored in Leo Zeilig’s new novel, The World Turned Upside Down.
If re-municipalization—returning a privatized service to local public control—is to work in South Africa, we need other forms of social contracting between municipalities and citizens.
South African cricket is currently the subject of TRC-style hearings into the racism and nepotism in the game. It makes for riveting TV, but focuses too much on individual instances of racism and discrimination.
In the third video for our Nairobi edition of Capitalism in My City, Gacheke Gachihi visits a site of environmental injustice.
In the collective consciousness of global football, Zaire and Haiti—which both qualified for the 1974 World Cup—are remembered for their dismal performance. But is this legacy justified?
The US federal system is a patchwork of states and territories, municipal and local jurisdictions, each with its own laws and regulations. This complex map provides ample opportunities for shell games of “hide the money.”
On this week’s AIAC Talk, a discussion with historian Adam Tooze on the history and future of the COVID-19 crisis.
Ordinary working-class people have been forced to the belief that there can never actually be real solutions; stripped of the confidence that fundamental change can happen.
The CIA committed many crimes in the early days of post-independence Africa. But is it fair to call their interference “recolonization”?
Renowned Ghanaian highlife musician, Nana Ampadu, died on September 28, 2021. In this interview from 2007, historian Jennifer Hart talks with him about the music that made him famous.
Europe would have been a marginal player in world history without Africa’s natural resources and centuries of cheap African labor.
For all the grief Afropunk gets, including its commercialization and appetite for expansion, it still manages to bring people, mostly black, together over two days for a pretty great party.
Kyle Shepherd’s new music blooms brightly from out of the shadow of pandemic and considers what it means to be South African, African, and human.
More than a decade since the surge in large-scale land acquisitions worldwide, many land deals remain in limbo. They nonetheless have far-reaching consequences for those who depend on land as foundational to life.
Poet Mongane Wally Serote’s 40-year lament, still haunts Black South Africans: “it is only in our memory that this is our land.” The land haunts our memory, and, in turn, we haunt the land’s memory.
On this week’s episode of AIAC Talk, Will Shoki speaks with Maha Ben Gadha about the changing political landscape in Tunisia.
Why is South Africa’s draft Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill contradicting the constitution and proposing to shield academics and scholars who propagate racist and bigoted ideas?
The Pandora Papers connects Kenya’s ruling family to secret accounts in offshore companies and tax havens. But, state looting started with Jomo Kenyatta.
Abdulrazak Gurnah’s novels offer a skepticism against the cultural politics of packaging African stories for global circulation and consumption.
Abdulrazak Gurnah’s Nobel Prize for Literature win raises questions about the role of the LitNobel and how they construct what we think of and buy as African literature.