018 – African ethnoastronomy Book – Venus Rising: South African Astronomical Beliefs, Customs and Observations

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venus-rising-cover Venus Rising: South African Astronomical Beliefs, Customs and Observations Written by Peter G. Alcock

Venus Rising: South African Astronomical Beliefs, Customs and Observations examines traditional South African celestial knowledge, ranging from the Venda in the north to the /Xam San (Bushman) in the south. Also considered are eclipses, comets and meteors. Likewise discussed are place names, stories, poetry and riddles as well as other linguistic expressions which are linked to the heavens. The book, the first of its kind in this country, is a beginning and not an end, given that there is still more information to be collected in the vastness of South Africa’s cultural heritage. Readers, reinforced with information contained in this book, are invited to scan the night skies from a truly South African perspective.” [1]

The book is given away as a pdf for free by the Astronomical Society of Southern Africa. Visit the Book’s Homepage or Download Book

“Peter Alcock is a science graduate with a Ph.D. who has become interested, in more recent times, in South African indigenous scientific knowledge and history as well as geographic interpretations of selected South African novels. Peter published a book in 2010 on indigenous weather knowledge in this country. A companion volume on South African indigenous celestial knowledge is presently being considered by a local publisher. Peter prefers to avoid the “well-trodden path” in his research, and generally concentrates on the road less travelled.” [3]

Notes

1. http://assa.saao.ac.za/astronomy-in-south-africa/ethnoastronomy/venus-rising/

2. http://assa.saao.ac.za/astronomy-in-south-africa/ethnoastronomy/

3. Peter Alcock’s KwaZulu-Natal research, http://www.archivalplatform.org/news/entry/peter_alcocks/

 

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017 – Suggested reading materials for young Africanists – by Thabo Mbeki

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The Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute released a list of books recommended by Thabo Mbeki. There are a few unexpected surprises like “The Eighteeth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte” by Karl Marx. Read the list below. Source: Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute

1. The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte – by Karl Marx

marxGutenberg link: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/1346/1346-h/1346-h.htm

Written: December 1851 – March 1852

The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte poses the challenge to us always to understand that history, even as an ‘academic’ discipline, is about the general (multi-disciplinary) development of human society. This means that we must constantly seek to understand African and global society in all its elements.

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016 – [Akiiki Original] Is “the media ignores black news stories” becoming an untrue cliché?

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Is “the media ignores black news stories” becoming an untrue cliché?

That’s my question. Is “the media/world ignores black news stories” becoming an untrue cliché?

When the news of the kidnapped girls broke, I spotted immediate outrage. Why is the media ignoring this story? Why does the world not care? Etc.

True, when the story broke, it may be that the news focused more on other things like Malaysian Airlines story and the one about a ferry. If we graph news coverage the missing 200 girls’ story could come out with less media share. But to say that No one cares is not true. “200 girls missing. No one cares!” this hyperbole is not true. Someone cares.
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015 – Ngugi wa Thiong’o: Consciousness and African Renaissance: South Africa in the Black Imagination

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The Fourth Steve Biko Annual Lecture given by Ngugi wa Thiong’o at
University of Cape Town, South Africa, 12th September 2003.

Consciousness and African Renaissance: South Africa in the Black Imagination

When Vasco da Gama set foot at the Cape in 1498, it was part of the general period of what has come to be known as the European renaissance, the founding moment of Capitalist modernity and Western bourgeois ascendancy in the world. It was also the beginnings of the wanton destruction of many city civilisations along the coasts of Africa, East Africa in particular. In 1994 Nelson Mandela as the first black president of the Republic of South Africa at a meeting of the OAU in Tunis recalls the destruction of Carthage by the generals of an earlier empire and says: “where South Africa appears on the agenda again, let it be because we want to discuss what its contribution shall be to the making of the new African renaissance. Let it be because we want to discuss what materials it will supply for the rebuilding of the African city of Carthage.” [3] Continue reading

014 – Thebe Medupe: Astrophysicist + Cosmic Africa

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Thebe Medupe (Credit AfroLegends)

Thebe Medupe (Credit AfroLegends)

“Thebe Medupe grew up in a poor South African village near Mafikeng, about four hours north-west of Johannesburg. He went on to gain a doctorate in astrophysics at the University of Cape Town, and was presenter and associate producer of “Cosmic Africa”, a feature documentary about traditional African astronomy released in 2002. He is a researcher at the South African Astronomical Observatory, where he is participating in a programme to encourage black South Africans to take up astronomy. He is writing a book, in the Setswana language, on ethno-astronomy”[1]

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013 – Neil Turok: Finding Africa’s Einstein + African Institute for Mathematical Sciences

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Turok [Photo Credit DigitalClassroom/Vodacom]

Neil Turok [Photo Credit DigitalClassRoom/Vodacom]

““The next Einstein will come from Africa.” Of that, Neil Turok is convinced. A South African cosmologist and chair of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Turok’s Next Einstein Initiative is working to nurture Africa’s future intellectual giants, geniuses with the potential to shape global technologies – from quantum computing to modelling epidemics.

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012 – Maurice Taonezvi Vambe : Contributions of African literature to the African Renaissance

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ABSTRACT

This article explores how African creative artists have participated – and continue to participate – in creating African identities that promote the idea of a cultural movement of African literary Renaissance. The article divides the phases of the African literary Renaissance into four cultural movements that emerged from the struggle against colonial oppression. Continue reading

011- [Akiiki Original] Art Criticism: African Renaissance, how the prefix ‘Afro-’ may arrest imagination & Manifesto Salesmanship

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Art Criticism: African Renaissance, how the prefix ‘Afro-’ may arrest imagination & Manifesto Salesmanship

The Work of David Osagie |http://www.behance.net/davidosagie

The Work of David Osagie |http://www.behance.net/davidosagie

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I initially planned this essay for the “Afro-surrealism” call that I saw published on Shadow & Act, but it became apparent as I went on and explored my own viewpoint that I was not comfortable with the idea of the book, though I thought it necessary.

I concluded that: The prefix ‘afro-’ has acquired a parasitic character, leeching off manifestos. And it has the capacity to arrest African imagination, so that the African imagination follows other manifestos, only to attach itself to them and never coming up with an original of its own.

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009 – Kenya: The African Renaissance in Art

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Sitting Allowance Series by Peterson Kamwathi [Charcoal on Paper _ 2009]

A Timeline:

December 2009: “The African Renaissance is now” – writes Margaretta wa Gacheru:

“AfricanColours brought together a stellar group of Kenyan artists early in December for a two day brainstorming workshop on theme “Selling the Arts/Staying Relevant.”

Held at Nairobi’s leading art centre, the RaMoMA Museum of Modern African Art, workshop organizers William Ndwiga, Clients Relations RaMoMA and Maggie Otieno, General Manager www.africancolours.com had assembled a score of Kenya’s most prolific and creative contemporary artists to share ideas and hear words of wisdom from art collectors, art institution managers, and even one university professor of marketing…

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