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Pambazuka News Pambazuka News is produced by a pan-African community of some 2,600 citizens and organisations - academics, policy makers, social activists, women's organisations, civil society organisations, writers, artists, poets, bloggers, and commentators who together produce insightful, sharp and thoughtful analyses and make it one of the largest and most innovative and influential web forums for social justice in Africa.

Latest titles from Pambazuka Press

African Sexualities

Earth Grab A Reader
Sylvia Tamale
A groundbreaking book, accessible but scholarly, by African activists. It uses research, life stories and artistic expression to examine dominant and deviant sexualities, and investigate the intersections between sex, power, masculinities and femininities
Buy now

Global NATO and the Catastrophic Failure in Libya

From Citizen to Refugee Horace Campbell
In this elegantly written and incisive account, scholar Horace Campbell investigates the political and economic crises of the early twenty-first century through the prism of NATO's intervention in Libya.
Buy now

Queer African Reader

Demystifying Aid Edited by Sokari Ekine, Hakima Abbas
A diverse collection of writing from across the continent exploring African LGBTI liberation: identity, tactics for activism, international solidarity, homophobia and global politics, religion and culture, and intersections with social justice movements. A richness of voices, a multiplicity of discourses, a quiverful of arguments. African queers writing for each other, theorising ourselves, making our ...more
Buy now

China and Angola

African Awakening A Marriage of Convenience?
Edited by Marcus Power, Ana Alves
This book focuses on the increased co-operation between Angola and China and shows that although relations with China might have bolstered regime stability and boosted the international standing of the Angolan government, China is not regarded as a long term strategic partner.
Buy now

How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

To Cook a ContinentWalter Rodney
Rodney shows how the imperial countries of Europe, and subsequently the US, bear major responsibility for impoverishing Africa. They have been joined in this exploitation by agents or unwitting accomplices both in the North and in Africa.
Buy now

Emerging Powers Digest: 14th Edition, 5 December 2014

In today’s newsletter the Emerging Powers project announces a call for grant applications; gives a summary of Zuma's travels to China and the signing of the 5-10 Year Framework on Cooperation between the two countries; highlights Ethiopia's budding textile industry and relations with China; India's growing investment presence in Africa; militarization of the continent by the emerging actors. The news digest also provides analyses and news reports on China's evolving foreign policy and diplomatic relations. Read these and other news items in this week's edition of the Emerging Powers in Africa news digest.

Call for Grant Proposals

The Emerging Powers in Africa Project is issuing a call for grant proposals. The grants are aimed at examining the political, economic, social and cultural impact of the emerging powers footprint in Africa. The grant is specifically related to empowering civil society actors in gaining the appropriate knowledge and developing the necessary tools to articulate an informed perspective on the emerging powers in Africa and the corresponding impact.


+ Read the Emerging Powers Digest

+ The Emerging Powers Project Homepage

Pambazuka News Broadcasts

Pambazuka broadcasts feature audio and video content with cutting edge commentary and debate from social justice movements across the continent.

See the list of episodes.


This site has been established by Fahamu to provide regular feedback to African civil society organisations on what is happening with the African Union.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Books & arts

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Using literary fiction as a voice for African/Black liberation

Ahjamu Umi

2015-02-19, Issue 714

Progressive literary fiction has not always been highly regarded within African literature. Ahjamu Umi makes the case for its consciousness-developing and educational properties, and argues for its wider acceptance in African societies.

Freedom of expression is forbidden here

Foday Samateh

2015-02-11, Issue 713

The Gambia, ruled for the last 20 years by an eratic and brutal tyrant, is one of the worst places on earth to work as a journalist. One prominent journalist who lived under the Yahya Jammeh regime has placed on record his own harrowing experiences and those of others – plus insights into media history and operations in the tiny West African nation.

Nigeria's publishing industry: Telling our own stories

Ana Zoria

2015-02-05, Issue 712

cc MVC
Nigeria is not lacking in literary talent, yet there still aren't many Nigerian books freely available in the country, and they aren't quite as easy to find as foreign books. However, all is far from lost: There is a movement that is breathing new life into Nigerian storytelling.

A review: 'The Implosion of Contemporary Capitalism' and ‘Three Essays on Marx’s Value Theory’

Published by Monthly Review Press, 2013

Seth Sandronsky

2014-12-18, Issue 707

Want political economy that soberly unpacks power and wealth? Read two recent books by Samir Amin who defines the system’s current stage as “generalized-monopoly capitalism.” His study of it reveals what standard economics conceals and distorts.

Introducing the Mabati-Cornell Kiswahili Prize for African Literature

Mukoma Wa Ngugi and Lizzy Attree

2014-12-18, Issue 707

The new $15,000 literary prize will be awarded to the best Kiswahili unpublished manuscripts or books published within two years of the award year across the categories of fiction/short fiction collection, poetry and memoir and graphic novels.

On the sweetness of a fake book

Karim F Hirji

2014-12-03, Issue 705

Retired Professor Hirji, a book addict, has bought copies with frayed, half-torn or missing pages. He has on occasion received via mail a book other than the one ordered. But buying a fake book? Only in Dar es Salaam!

Anne Kansiime: A philosophical inquiry into the political economy of humour

Odomaro Mubangizi

2014-12-04, Issue 705

cc PZ
There is a lot going on in Africa: Boko Haram crisis in Nigeria, the Ebola crisis, armed conflict in South Sudan, rhetoric of ‘Africa arising’, the dramatic exit of Blaise Compaore, presidential elections... Many of these are issues that tend to make people get too serious and stressed. Uganda’s star comedia Anne Kansiime is offering people some respite.

Culture and revolution: The Pan-African Festival of Algiers 1969

Hamza Hamouchene

2014-11-06, Issue 701

The documentary is about the first Pan-African Cultural Festival in the continent that took place in Algiers, seven years after Algeria’s independence. The radical gathering was a genuine meeting of African cultures united in their denunciations of colonialism and fights for freedom.

How contemporary is Tanzanian Art?

Rehema Chachage

2014-11-06, Issue 701

cc pz
How much are Tanzania’s artists giving voice to the varied and changing cultural landscape of identity, values and beliefs in this globally influenced but locally anchored, culturally diverse, and technologically advancing world?

Does ‘Arrow of God’ anticipate the Igbo genocide?

Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

2014-10-16, Issue 698

‘Arrow of God’ presents a highly imaginative and anticipatory power of Achebe’s insight to the turbulent trajectory of post-(European)conquest African history and politics. This insight anticipates the catastrophe of the Igbo genocide.

Engaging with 'Something Quite Unlike Myself'

Chambi Chachage

2014-10-16, Issue 698

The poetry is a journey into the quest for self-determination. Resonating with Ngugi's ‘Re-membering Africa’, Onsando's text focuses on selves that constitute Africa's dismembered self.

Tribute to you

Juliet Kushaba

2014-10-16, Issue 698

Ugandan women rights activist Hope Turyasingura is dead. Turyasingura is former chairperson of Center for Domestic Violence Prevention. This poem celebrates her.

Remembering the late Milton Blake on the 70th anniversary of his birth

Norman Otis Richmond aka Jalali

2014-10-01, Issue 696

Blake and this writer created the Black Music Association’s Toronto Chapter in 1984 to plug African-Canadian music makers into the international music market. It was a huge success.

The Coming Revolution: A review

Benjamin Woods

2014-10-03, Issue 696

A new book called ‘The Coming Revolution’, argues that, contrary to the dominant narrative in western media, the South African revolution remains incomplete.

Obama’s Law: When Western advocacy misses the mark

Ben Radley

2014-09-23, Issue 695

Obama’s Law is a forthcoming, feature-length documentary that travels between the Congo and America to reveal the danger of the single African story – the African victim in need of a white saviour - that continues to be sold in the West. Ben Radley for Pambazuka News caught up with the film’s director, Seth Chase, to find out more.

My body and skin

Valentina Acava Mmaka

2014-09-23, Issue 695

What is your body? What is it to you, to others and to the whole world? Who makes decisions about your body and why? Here’s one woman’s deep thoughts on these fundamental questions

Euphoria of Kenyan music fading in Europe

Mickie Ojijo

2014-09-18, Issue 694

Kenya's top singers no longer attract the crowds they once did in central Europe, where in the first place, the population is scant and spread out, forcing event organisers to think twice before inviting any.

‘Corruption and Human Rights Law in Africa’: A review

A coming of age story of the anti-corruption movement

Abdul Tejan-Cole

2014-09-11, Issue 693

The new scholarly book discusses three key developments in human rights law that could unlock the blockages currently encountered in attempts to seek adequate redress for corruption: limitations on the concept of state sovereignty, expanded notions of standing of complainants, and rejection of strict rules of causation which dominate national criminal legal systems

‘Nigeria, Biafra & Boko Haram: Ending the Genocides through Multi-State Solution’: A review

Belvedere Jehosophat

2014-09-04, Issue 692

Whereas the author’s proposed multi-state solution is controversial and needs to take account of certain important practical realities, the new book is an engaging primer on Nigerian history and is worth reading for those with an interest in post-colonial studies

Representation of Africa in film: ‘White Shadow’

Amira Ali

2014-08-13, Issue 691

This film by an Israeli director about albino killings in Tanzania is replete with Western stereotypes about the African savage, without any historical or political context

Lost in the dance

A review of Sea Salt in the City, Circaidy Gregory Press, by Funmi Adewole

Sanya Osha

2014-08-07, Issue 690

Adewole’s poetry is entangled in a broad spectrum of issues encompassing private and public deliberations and, of course, spiritual concerns. The key themes are belonging, acceptance and understanding.

Imperialism’s new strategies

A review of ‘Divide and Ruin: The West’s Imperial Strategy in an Age of Crisis’, by Dan Glazebrook, published by Liberation Media, 2013

Ama Biney

2014-07-03, Issue 685

Dan Glazebrook’s volume demonstrates that the infamous imperialism of the past has not disappeared but has instead adopted new strategies to obscure its intentions, such as proxy wars and media-based indoctrination. These tactics must be exposed and imperialist resisted

Live and let live

A review essay Osita Ebiem’s ‘Nigeria, Biafra & Boko Haram: Ending the Genocides through Multi-State Solution’ [New York: Page Publishing, 2014, 222 pp, US$12.84, pbk, US$10.00, kindle ed/£9.53, pbk, £5.99, kindle ed]

Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

2014-06-19, Issue 683

Ebiem’s discourse on the catastrophe that is Nigeria is an urgent reminder to the world of the responsibilities of the state in society and the dire consequences that could occur if there were any doubts or erosions on the salient features of these roles

Confessions of a Terrorist: A review

Atunga Atuti O.J.

2014-06-11, Issue 682

The novel goes beyond the prevailing narratives of terrorist behaviour and delves into the thought processes of a terrorist, giving us unique insights into the ‘mind’ of a terrorist.

What are we doing to our women and girls?

Amira Ali

2014-05-14, Issue 678

Words in a poem, in reaction to the abducted Chibok girls; there are many more such stories around the world. It is dedicated to women and girls suffering from similar or same circumstances. At the same time, I am compelled to add to this, words from Amina Mama delivered in a speech at the AU’s 50th anniversary: "Let us make it clear to the world that violence and tolerance of violence are not endemic, not an “African tradition”, nor simply what black men do to women. Rather they are the results of systemic injustices."

‘When South Africa Called, We Answered’

Danny Schechter

2014-05-14, Issue 678

New book tells how a global anti-apartheid movement helped South Africa win its freedom, and its lessons for us

A bright Africa?

A review of The Bright Continent: Breaking Rules and Making Change in Modern Africa by Dayo Olopade (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014, ISBN 9780547678313)

Kwaku O. Kushindana

2014-05-15, Issue 678

In this review, Kwaku Kushindana questions whether the book’s optimistic conclusions are grounded in a framework that is realistic for all of contemporary Africa.

Beauty is…cultural transformation and empowerment

Michelle Yaa Asantewa

2014-05-01, Issue 676

The new film looks at a range of themes and through a variety of formats examines its central question of what beauty is for the African woman

Comrade President: A review

Ama Biney

2014-05-01, Issue 676

The new film on the Mozambican leader, Samora Machel, shows a dynamic figure who rose from nurse, guerrilla fighter, military commander to president of a nation that was assailed by many enemies. He is to be remembered for his achievements and desire for peace, justice, democracy and equality for all Mozambicans

‘Stokely – A Life’ starts strong, crashes hard

Ahjamu Umi

2014-03-19, Issue 670

The new biography does a great job of demonstrating the intellect, selflessness, commitment and absolute courage that characterized Kwame Ture’s work in the US in the 1960s. But the author fails to research, analyze and critically assess the value of Ture’s work in Africa, whose influence continues to this day.

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