|Nyansapo – Progressing from superstition to tradition
“The old arrow is a model for the craftsman making a new one ” – African proverb, Twi
Greetings, this weekend I took the children to see an Eddie Murphy film at the cinema. If I’m honest about it I had huge doubts about it because lets be honest here – our brotha Eddie is not exactly renown for being the most conscious or responsible African in the movie (and real) world. But I figured that if I’m cool with letting my little ones watch a big green ogre, or talking toys, animals, robots from out of space and other such weird and wonderful creations, a film about a man whose success comes from listening to advice from his daughters imaginary friends seemed… well normal. And to be honest, for me – Imagine That (the name of the film) with its zillions of clichés and stereotypes was very normal, in fact at one sentimental scene I was touched so much that it ALMOST made me cry, you know, that bit when daddy burst in and… well I won’t spoil the climax of the story for those of you that plan to watch it – oh yeah… ‘with the children’. But the whole story surrounding the tale of a young girl, her goo-gaa (security blanket) and imaginary friends (duppy) triggered memories of a dream I had a few days ago. Now let me explain to you now, I am not a person that usually remembers his dreams, but this one was so vivid, so strong, well suffice to say although I won’t share the details I am acting on the instructions received.
Now for those of you that aren’t interested in spiritual matters I suggest you skip the rest of this article now. You see although I am a very political person, I also have a deeply spiritual center. Those of you listening to last week programme would have heard both Bro Omowale (PASCF) and Bro Ateinda (AAPRP) talking about Kwame Nkrumah’s brilliant book – Consciencism. For those of you who don’t know, this text strongly articulates the fact that the political element of Pan Africanism will never succeed in delivering us total liberation unless united with Africa’s traditional spiritual base - and vice versa.
So why am I waffling on about a children’s movie? Well one of the aspects of my dream was realised through the film when I observed the two major protagonists in the film competing in what could only be described as spiritual warfare. Eddie (the African) was listening to the indigenous wisdom of our Ancestors and John (the ‘native American’) was using divination to talk to his Kontomble (nature/spirit guide) tapping into the shamanic energy of his ‘tribe’ like a curandero. I couldn’t believe what I was watching. Then if that wasn’t enough, the story also touched on rituals and fetishes (using different words).
Now before you read on please let me admit first that what I’m about to discuss next I may get ‘wrong’ in places so please don’t be mad at me. I am writing from the heart on what is my own lifelong journey. Nonetheless I think its time we had a discussion about tradition and superstition. One is based upon cultural practices encapsulating wisdoms transferred down from generation to generation, the other - a whole heap of mystical sayings typically created to invoke fear and manipulate us.
As an African I am still saddened whenever I read of those misrepresenting traditional African medicine as witchcraft or ‘bush’ medicine as if all ‘bush’ was somehow bad. From redbush tea to ginger roots, these ingredients prescribed by our traditional healers have long been proven to have beneficial medicinal purposes when infused with water and used largely unprocessed.
But we have to admit - we don’t help ourselves.
Out of fear, lack of discipline or sheer ignorance too many of us have forgotten the power we have within to heal ourselves and have allowed a plethora of spiritual hustlers to create a niche industry out of holistic healing. From simple claims of providing spiritual cleansing services and raising the divine through to charging expensive lifelong holistic healing prescriptions from individuals claiming to be returning Gods (with direct debit accepting bank accounts).
Superstition divorced from tradition is dangerous. For every positive workshop on healthy living, I’ve also seen people exploited, manipulated, and actually harmed by so called spiritual healers, ministers and imams who live their lives in a outrageous manner with luxury cars, numerous expensive holidays and property mortgages paid by their devotees. These people are so divorced from our own natural traditions that they have no place demanding money from the vulnerable let alone offering medicine to the unwell.
And yet, like a bad rash no matter how many of these shysters get exposed, a new batch keep popping up. Even the old ones resurface under new pseudonyms and before long they have recruited a new army to peddle their evil wares. Why is this? Well I suspect they keep coming back because we keep calling them back. We seem too frightened to speak of things that we have for too long left unspoken.
But the spoken word has power. Not only to hurt but also to heal. And let me categorically tell you - not all our healers are qualified to be speaking on holistic healing. Instead of respecting and working with tradition, you find many peddling superstition just like the giant multi-national pharmaceutical companies who are in Truth their competitors.
I’m often contacted by people who desperately need spiritual guidance but often feel controlled or subjugated by the collective power of others. I always tell them that I can only listen and support them, that I am neither healer nor leader but simply an African traveling along liberation path whilst following my purpose. Yet I do believe. Not, only in the Ancestors and their gifts from the spiritual realm, but also in the Creator and the many traditions surrounding and handed down to us in the physical world.
From the deviant strands of shamanism as revealed in the film, to scientology, a favorite with many influential movie actors. I believe it is important for us to realise that superstition is a belief. Just in the same way that magic, religion and science are all forms of belief.
How many times have we heard remedies from our grandparent that offer natural cures for ailments like asthma or colds? The skin condition eczema runs throughout my family, for many years doctors prescribed skin thinning steroids based ointments to keep it at bay. Yet it was during a holiday in the Caribbean a few years when it got better. We took the advice of an elder and bathed in the sea and sun and rubbed some fresh aloe vera on our skins. Within days the rashes cleared up and have never returned with the same intensity ever again. This is traditional healing. Now before trusting Ancestral wisdom people were telling me to take Chinese medicine, talk to an indigenous herbalist/healer, and then all manner of nonsense was been given for why we were ‘cursed’ – from having a bad relationship with a maternal parent to having an evil spirit inside. This is superstition.
So why are so many of us susceptible to superstition? Well I believe it comes down to the fact that many of us have abandoned the practice of rites of passage. This is another topic best saved for another day, but it is wholly related.
Because most of us are not trained in practicing and recognising true Ancestral traditions, some of us become extremely gullible to scams perpetrated by charismatic fraudsters using superstition to invoke awe and fear before charging us thousands of pounds in order to become a regular fee paying customer (initiate) or train as a direct marketer (apprentice recruiter).
This is nothing new, hazing and other such fraternity indoctrination initiations have taken place in many institutions, practiced by many cultures – Spike Lee’s film School Days presents a classic example of this. Yet where the problems start is when those doing the ‘initiation’ masquerade as traditional healers or as in the case of some, divine beings typically from outer space. It is when these so called healers start to create trauma inducing rituals and prescribe ‘medicines’ that in reality should be characterised as legal highs they become dangerous.
So how can we protect ourselves? Well I believe by listening to our elders and recognising that we are living in a different time and environment from them. Some of the rituals they practiced are no longer valid, some more so. For example, male circumcision has long been proved as reducing infection to HIV/Aids alongside other related ailments and as a tradition should be continued. Female circumcision on the other hand is an inherited superstitious evil that should be stopped. You can watch the brilliant film Moolade by Ousmane Sembene for more information.
Africans in this Diaspora fear that cutting a child’s hair can adversely affect the ability of speech, whilst Africans back home believe the opposite. We need to question why there are such contradictions, is it related to the environment?
I believe, no let me rephrase that. I know that traditions change, and must be given the space to develop depending where we are if they are not to become harmful. Those who deal in superstitions lock their beliefs in time often claiming them to be ‘universal laws’ but failing to recognise that it is change - not stagnation that remains one of the principle universal Truths.
Do dreams convey messages from another realm beyond our consciousness? Yes. This reflects traditional wisdom. Should a woman feed a man some of her ‘love juice’ in his food to keep him? No this is superstitious manipulation.
How many of us have been told, ‘don't put your mouth on something negative else you make it happen’. This wisdom actually reflects the healthy tradition of prayer or invocation and represents a powerful Truth.
It is also worth noting that some of our superstitions were created with good intentions. Consider the saying “if you put your handbag on the floor you will never have money”. Today we can see that the purpose of such wisdom is designed to reduce the opportunity for theft or loss of property. The problem only arises when it takes on supernatural characteristics in order to force and manipulate us into action. At this point an Ancestral tradition has been characterised into a magic superstition. I haven’t even touched on fetishes and charms.
After returning home from watching the film, Imagine That - my daughter gave me Lisimba (her little toy lion) to watch over me. I’ve agreed to keep him with me for seven days, but can you believe that he already sleeps with me at night!
This article could go on for ever, I know hundreds of our sayings - some, traditions some superstitions. We can explore them together but I want to make one thing clear. We are our Ancestors. When we hear those inner voices, have communications from those who have passed through dreams, even acknowledge those vibes we feel, our ‘hunches’. We are not mad, it is not ‘ego’ nor are we deluded, suffering from mental health issues. It is a very natural process to experience flashes of intuition, it is all the more healthy when we experience them without artificial or chemical inducement. By this I mean we should seek enlightenment and empowerment through natural highs such as creative and meditative processes ranging from sleep to dance, from arts to crafts.
The substances we consume, the juices we drink, the words we repeat, all of these act as soul food towards the transition. Forget superstition and remember the most important message of our Ancestral tradition. That is, the power for us to heal ourselves lies within.
There are a very small group of true healers, diviners walking the earth – humble people with the ability to channel, to guide with wisdom, to heal through the vibration of nature. They do not seek your money, they will not ask or coerce you for it. They do not perform rituals for individual wealth, they do not offer power for individual gain. They seek only our survival, our collective well being, our collective liberation. Once we have identified them, we need to look after them - for their reputation is being damaged by the abusive manipulative ones out there consumed with fear, greed and power. Please read Ayi Kwei-Armahs’ book - The Healers if you seek further insight into this world.
Speaking about colonialism, the prophetic artist Bob Marley once sang that its time to ‘chase those crazy baldheads out of town’, today we still have work to do, but perhaps first we should aim to simultaneously keep our own house in order. We may no longer be physically in chains, but sadly we still have yet to free ourselves from detrimental spiritual enslavement.
May the Ancestors guide and protect us. Ase.
Toyin Agbetu is a writer,
film director, poet, and founder of Ligali, the pan African human rights based organisation.
Nyansapo: News and Updates
Nyansapo: The Pan African Drum
Greetings: Welcome new listeners to Nyansapo. The Pan African drum is broadcast from the UK and attracts new supporters from Africa and the Americas every week. Our broadcast is currently only available online. Our podcasts of previous shows are usually available 24 hours after broadcast.
The radio show is also available by going to http://www.myspace.com/nyansapodrum or clicking either of the links: Nyansapo Radio or Nyansapo Direct Studio Link
Live Broadcast: Nyansapo will be broadcasting live during the Nkrumah @ 100 Commemoration on Saturday 19th September 2009, 2pm – 8pm at Peckham Academy
Newsletter: We have been informed that some of our readers have not been receiving their newsletter until after our broadcast, others have not received it at all. We apologise for this ongoing issue and ask those that who do receive our newsletter to redistribute amongst friends and family who they know will appreciate its contents.
Nkrumah @ 100 Events
Nkrumah@100: Afrikan of the Millennium
Nkrumah @100 Commemoration
When: Saturday 19th September 2009, 2pm – 8pm
Where:Peckham Academy, 107 Peckham Road, Peckham, London, SE15 5DZ (Nearest British Rail: Peckham Rye)
Adm: Entrance is free
This event will be focused on popularising Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah's many achievements, legacy, strategy and ideas - exposing and clarifying his importance to Afrikans today. The emphasis is on Pan-Afrikanism - all Afrikans regardless of birthplace uniting in the spirit of Nkrumah.
Exciting activities planned include:
- A traditional Afrikan drum call to call our Afrikan family to gather.
- A traditional Afrikan opening led by Ghanaian Chiefs - setting the scene for a joyous and profound occasion.
- A speaker from the Convention People's Party (CPP) - Nkrumah's political party, who are also one of the 23 organisations involved in organising this event.
- Cecil Gutzmore from the University of the West Indies, Jamaica will be speaking.
- Afrikan centred cultural performances..
- Plenty of opportunities for the public to engage with Q&A sessions.
- Key Note speaker - Gamal Nkrumah (invited).
- Afrikan market.
In addition to the above, you will have an opportunity to purchase an introductory multisensory information pack on Kwame Nkrumah - including a CD of speeches and a DVD documentary for a discounted price of £5 - an ideal resource pack for adults, youths, secondary schools, further and higher education.
This will be a truly Pan-Afrikanist occasion for the whole family. Do make sure you arrive in good time, as the event WILL commence at 2pm. You will not want to miss our planned dynamic start!
Contact details: Nkrumah@100 Planning Committee on 07940 005 907 or firstname.lastname@example.org or www.pascf.org.uk
The Nkrumah@100 educational workshops will be held every Friday from 25th September 2009 to 31st October 2009 (inclusive), 7pm – 9.30pm at: 44-46 Offley Road, The Oval, London SW9 0LS (Entry is free - Nearest Tube: Oval).
The 2nd Nkrumah@100 Multi-Faith Service will take place on Sunday 27th September 2009, 2pm – 5pm at: Methodist Central Hall, Storeys Gate, Westminster, London SW1H 9NH (Entry is free – Nearest Tube: Westminster).
Centenary of Kwame Nkrumah
When: Monday 21st September 2009,
7.00 - 8.30 pm
Where: African Caribbean Community Library,
265 Lavender Hill, SW11
From colonisation to globalisation, the intellectual and political legacies of Dr Kwame Nkrumah, and
Africa’s future presented by
Dr Ama Biney,
Lecturer in African & Caribbean History
Free - must be booked in advance
In person: at African Caribbean Community Library
By telephone: 020 8871 7456
By e-mail: email@example.com
Steve Biko, the African freedom fighter and leader of the Black Consciousness Movement, was found dead in a Pretoria prison cell in Azania (South Africa)
12 September 1977. He was South Africa’s most influential and progressive student leader in the 1970s and a law student at the time of his death. He became a martyr of the Freedom Struggle and posed one of the strongest challenges to the apartheid structure in the country.
Although his death was attributed to “a prison accident,” evidence presented during the 15-day inquest into Biko’s death revealed otherwise. During his detention in a Port Elizabeth police cell he had been chained to a grill at night and left to lie in urine-soaked blankets. He had been stripped naked and kept in leg-irons for 48 hours in his cell. A blow in a scuffle with security police led to him suffering brain damage by the time he was driven naked and manacled in the back of a police van to Pretoria, where, on 12 September 1977 he died.
"The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed" - Steve Biko
Ahmed Sheikh from the revolutionary 90’s group African Dawn crossed passed away this weekend on 12 September 2009. Both artist, activist and cultural worker, he was an inspiration to many across the world and known for both his music and poetry.
Food lure used to sexually abuse children in Africa
A 65 year old expatriate teacher from America is the latest european facing jail after being arrested for abusing several African children desperate for food.
Patrick Ken Larbash, 65, was arrested and is currently in custody whilst officials investigate child abuse allegation. His imprisonment follows the seizure of video recordings with up to eight Ghanaian children filmed sucking his penis at his house in Adjomanikope near Sege in the Dangme East District.
Larbash who was previously living in Techiman relocated to Adjomanikope after being forced to flee when elders of the community suspected him of abusing other little girls in the area.
Media reports state;
"The 65- year-old retired teacher from Minnesota in the United States of America is believed to be one of many paedophiles in the world who lure innocent children into lewd acts and sell the pictures to operators of pornographic websites.
At the end of every video, he comments on the act of each child and explicitly mentions their names and locations."
Read More >>
Police continue abuse of children under guise of terrorism
Officers from British police forces are continuing to abuse anti-terror legislation to harass innocent young African children through stop and search
Two metropolitan police officers are being investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) following a complaint made by a 43 year old African man who was searched along with his 11 year old daughter and his neighbours 6 year old daughters.
Read More >>
Plain clothes officers seized the father’s mobile phones, USB sticks and a CD seized by the officers and was then instructed to stand in front of a CCTV camera in order to have his photograph taken.
The IPCC issued a statement explaining: “The complainant states that, when he asked under what legislation his property was being seized, he was told it was under section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000. He also complained that he was given no information as to when he could retrieve his goods or who to contact in order to do so, and that there was no communication from police despite assurances that he would be told when he could collect his things.”
||Request: Lanyero's Collection
As you may know or not, I design and make clothes. So if you know of any chic boutique that sells nice, trendy things and you think my line maybe suitable for them to stock. It maybe one that you might shop in or not, one that you may walk pass now and then, whatever, please do let me know, as I am looking for place to stock my line.
Below are few examples of what I do!
Gender Violence Training
When: On Friday's - 11th
September - 11th December 2009, 10 am - 1pm
A cross cultural programme of free workshops that offer an opportunity to explore the issue of gender violence/ domestic violence.
The workshops will be held at:
Comberton Childrens Centre
10 Comberton Road
London E5 9PU
Please book your place on any or all of the workshops by contacting
MICHELLE LOWE 020 8806 0680.
At the time of booking please let us know about any particular requirements you may have. Crèche facilities are available.
Places are limited.
These workshops are not suitable for women who are currently experiencing gender violence/ domestic violence. Women who want to explore the issues in a supportive environment are encouraged to attend BUILDING HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS PROGRAMME, please contact Michelle Lowe at the above number.
ADAP - African Development Awareness Day
ADAP will be staging its first African Development Awareness Day, taking place on the 14th November 2009 @ The West Green Learning Centre, Langham Road, London N15 3RB. Time: 3pm - 8pm.
The aim of the day is to educate and inform members of the African/Caribbean Diaspora community living in the United Kingdom, about ADAP's developmental programmes taking place on the African continent.
We hope to spread awareness and shed 'light' through various guest speakers, workshops and presentations, including informing you on the many investment opportunities currently taking place in Africa, and how you could become a part of growing team of dedicated individuals helping to bring about positive change within our communities.
Entertainment on the day will be provided by the renowned comedian; Prophet Kwaku Bonsu, music by Segge Dan of Black Britanyaa, and a host of performers.
TELL a friend to TELL a friend and SPREAD the word.
Chi Creation Stories CIC
This summer was a great summer on many levels! The one I want to share with you is the one where Chi Creation Stories is gifted 5 acres of land in Ghana to build a storytelling school based on the griot way. Griots are being who take the stories of the community, structure them in a specific way and tell those stories back to the community. Griots bring the stories from one village to the next, Griots hold the histories of a community, family, individual. A griot could be focused on a ruler and or others in positions effecting global history. Griots tell the story of the new born child and the hopes and dreams the community have for that child. Griots impart the appropriate story for the particular rites of passage through ritual. Griots use song, music and dance ensuring the storytelling is a community event. Griots know who is entitled to which stories. Griots hold volumes of information, knowledge and wisdom all filed away in their mind, body and spirit.
After celebrating I quickly realised it meant I needed to work much harder than I already was. I needed not only to earn a living for my family and myself but I also needed to earn money to save toward building the school. This year I will spend writing a business plan and saving up to take myself with named others to Ghana.
My company is a community interest company that design and run storytelling theatre projects based on the griot way. One of the reasons for building the school in Ghana is to create a space for our young people, families etc in the Diaspora to connect with Africa through a rites of passage and storytelling program.
At this stage I am not asking for money. I am asking that you consider us for all your creative project needs. We have a wide range of expertise and professionalism. From Poetry to literature, from directing to filming, from storytelling to history, from engineering to art, from geography to movement from camping to ritual. When it comes to creativity it is all within our remit.
By putting contracts, commissions, projects, long-term and short term work our way you will be making a great contribution towards the vision manifesting as a reality. having said all that we do require a fundraiser so we can look at sponsorship. We don't want to ask people for money before we can say this is how much we have.
Blessings and Love Chinyere
Chinyere Nwobani (B'eng MA)
Chi Creation Stories CIC
Outstanding Students: Kwabena Adjepong and Sydney Viera
LSBC Annual Academic Achievement Awards
Do you know a Black student who has done exceptionally well in their exams this year?
For the fourth successive year I am holding the The London Schools and the Black Child Annual Academic Achievement Awards.
As in previous years they will be held at the House of Commons in early October. In attendance will be Education Ministers, the Mayor of London Boris Johnson and a host of black celebrities.
Prizes include laptop computers, MP3 players and the chance to be mentored by top finance and media organizations.
These are academic awards. Last years winners included: Chidi Amadi who received 10 A*s and 5 As in his GCSEs, Sydney Viera who gained 4 As at A Level and 2 Bs at AS Level and David Charles who graduated from Imperial College London with a First Class Degree in Biology. If you know a child you want to nominate please contact Caitlin firstname.lastname@example.org or Sonia email@example.com on 0207 219 4426
But hurry. The closing date for nominations is Friday the 18th September at 5pm.
Diane Abbott MP
100 Mothers Movement: Health Fair
Community Health Fair
The 100 Mothers Movement will be organising a health fair on Saturday 26th September from 12-6pm in Tottenham.
The day will include:
- Tai-chi demonstrations
- Breathing and meditation
- Smoothie making and juicing
- lectures and seminars on business, raw food and fibroids
Please forward to family and friends.
||Comment: African Traditional Medicine Day 2009:
That traditional medicine may find its rightful place
The African continent celebrated the seventh African Traditional Medicine Day last week and experts used the opportunity to assess the progress Nigeria has made so far in this field, whose decade will elapse next year. Their verdict is not cheery news for the country, writes Joseph Okoghenun.
AS the end of the African Traditional Medicine decade approaches and as Africans, both home and in the Diaspora marked the seventh anniversary of the African Traditional Medicine Day last week, experts have assessed the challenges and successes recorded so far in Nigeria since the day was declared in 2001.
The decision to observe the day followed adoption by the region's health ministers, who requested the institution of the day on the World Health Organization (WHO) calendar for observance in member states, so as to promote the role of traditional medicine in the continents' healthcare system.
While the declaration of the decade was made in 2001, the celebration of the day did not begin until 2003, when Africans began to mark the day as special day in recognition by WHO.
The theme for this year's celebration was: Traditional Medicine and Patients Security.
President of Prometra International, Dr. Erick Gbodossou gave insight into the theme of this year's celebration. "Commitment calls for patients' security knowing that misusing a plant may lead to adverse effects on the human body. In fact, any plant may be unsafe because its therapeutic virtues are sometimes temporarily dependent on the collection system (time of the day and period of the year), in order to achieve the expected effect," he said.
For him, the patient's security in the use of traditional medicine has to do with removing charlatans from the system. Gbodossou said: "The security of the patient can be threatened by the administration of a remedy for profit sake, which is a characteristic of charlatanism. This is why, to guarantee patient's security, it is important to carry out a strong fight against prosperous charlatans who prevail mainly in modern African cities. Simultaneously, in parallel, the patient's security includes the need to stop the plundering of the therapeutic virtues of plants by pharmaceutical drug firms, who widen the field of use of a remedy originally codified to treat specific infections and deny intellectual property rights to holders of the indigenous knowledge."
He summarised the components of patients' security in African Traditional Medicine context to include "the development of an institutional legal framework; the setting up of a cartography of traditional medicines practices with an exhaustive list of traditional health practitioners involved in associations; the creation throughout the African continent of experimental centres for collaboration between both modern and traditional medicines and the development of scientific research on medicinal plants for wide-scale guaranteed use of their therapeutic values."
WHO estimates put it that 80 to 85 per cent of Africans, including Nigerians, depend on traditional medicine for their primary healthcare. And national statistics has it that between 60 to 70 per cent of Nigerians are delivered outside the orthodox clinics, by Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs), a core component of African Traditional Medicine.
As the continent marked the day in grand style last week, experts in the country say that it is not yet hurray for traditional medicine practice in Nigeria.
Director General and Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Natural Medicine Development Agency (NNMDA), Mr. Taminoibuomi Okujagu noted that the country has made "a number of mile stones" in pursuance of the objectives of the African Traditional Medicine Day. According to the microbiologist, that the nation is making progress can be seen in the fact that the nation found it worthy to establish the agency, which is a parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, to research, develop, document, preserve and promote the nation's natural medicine, which has been explained to be "traditional or indigenous healthcare systems, medications and non-medications, healing arts, sciences and technologies."
Through the agency, the NNMDA boss noted that the nation has been able to develop pharmacopoeia, a book or database listing drug use in medical practice and describing their compositions, preparations, uses, dosages, effects and side effects. The fact that the National Agency for Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) "has put together criteria for listing traditional medicine", Okujagu said, is a progress in the right direction. And the nation currently has a Traditional Medicine Bill before the National Assembly. Once passed by the relevant authorities, the bill, he said: "Will regulate the practice and practitioners in such a way that it would facilitate the integration of traditional medicine into healthcare system."
Okujagu is of the view that the non- integration of traditional healthcare management boils down largely to "issues of misgivings about the practice and charlatans." According to him, although, "herbal medicine alone is a multi-billion dollar business worldwide, we are playing very little role in it."
The Chairman of Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board (LSTMB), Dr. Bunmi Omoseyinde is of the view that the nation's slow progress and little role in global natural medicine practice is as a result of strong resistance from orthodox medicine practitioners in the country.
"Hostility to the development of traditional medicine has been coming from the orthodox medical practitioners owing to their level of lack of understanding of what traditional medicine is supposed to be. Therefore, we still have this professional arrogance and parochialism. When the responsibility of controlling healthcare system has been placed in the hands of doctors, traditional medicine is sadly relegated to the background," he said.
Against the accusation by orthodox medical experts that traditional medicine often lack active ingredients and practitioners often use incantations in the process of administering it, the LSTMB chairman is quick to counter the accusations, explaining that all plants, which African traditional medicines are made from, contain active ingredients. But because of the issue of intellectual property, the practitioner, he said, is not bound to disclose the active ingredients in his herbal product. Incantation, which is often associated with the practice in rural areas, Omoseyinde said, is nothing more than memorizing the names and uses of certain herbs by illiterate rural practitioners.
For Omoseyinde who is a medical doctor, there is nothing esoteric about incantations. "Incantation comes about because our African history is oral history and we have to give it to our leaders, because they were not able to write and read. So, they memorise names of plants used for each occasion through the words of mouth. The line of incantation is talking about one or two things, for the traditional medicine practitioner to know what a plant is used for," he explained.
He noted that by not developing traditional medicine to its fullest height, the nation is missing greatly in terms of national development.
Omoseyinde said: "We have been losing lots of our economic values by neglecting our traditional medicine. If we have been able to develop our traditional medicine, the Tianshi, GNLD, Forever Living Products would not have penetrated us. But because there is a lot of market need for traditional medicine and because we have remained underdeveloped, they have been able to exploit that opportunity to penetrate us.
"But let's say we have been able to develop out traditional medicine, lots of job would have been created, all these shouts about unemployment would have been tackled one by one," he added.
He explained how this would have been made possible:
"First of all, we are going to involve the conservation of medicinal plants. In this process, we would need graduates that studied Botany, Pharmacology, and Pharmacognosy among others that have nothing to do and put them into proper perspective to go to the area of developing traditional medicine. We are going to talk about the packaging industry and the manufacturing sector.
"A traditional medicine products producing company I visited in China employed over 500,000 people. So, you can see the economic development that results from the promotion of traditional medicine," he further revealed.
Omoseyinde's greatest fear lies in the fact that if the nation does not develop traditional medicine system early enough, it may not be able to realise the much vaunted Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), whose lifetime would elapse by the year 2015.
For Rev. Fr. Anselm Adodo of Paxherbals located in Ewu, Edo State, nothing has been achieved by the nation in the development of traditional medicine practice. He is sad to see that India and China are not only developing their traditional medicine, but have gone ahead to incorporate the practice into their healthcare system, while Nigeria is lagging behind.
Adodo said: "As we celebrate another traditional medicine day, it is indeed sad that nothing has been done on the part of government to actively develop and regulate the use and practice of traditional herbal medicine.
"It has been another year of wasteful spending on useless conferences, seminars and symposia, attended by heavily dressed 'professionals' who, apart from their Masters and Ph.D.s, have nothing else to show in the area of knowledge development and research.
It has been one more year of paying lip service to a venture whose income generating capacity can dwarf the billions accruing from the oil business."
Adodo lamented: "The Traditional Medicine Practice Bill is still pending as the National Assembly is busy making unimportant laws on how women should dress, and how constituency money should be spent. While countries of Europe, America and Asia have recorded huge turnovers from the sale of herbal medicine worldwide, Nigeria is still busy organizing conferences and seminars to educate her so-called professionals on the efficacy of herbal medicine.
"In India, they organize a yearly convention where medical doctors, pharmacists and ayurvedic practitioners do get together to discuss ways of moving forward in the healthcare arena. Ayurveda is synonymous with India and it involves a combination of prevention, treatment mostly with homeopathic medicine and lastly, surgical procedures. And practitioners of Ayurveda do command much respect throughout India, he revealed.
"Currently, China and India are earning so much money from producing herbal medicine to the rest of the world. So, one ought to ask: What in the world is wrong with us in Africa, specifically in Nigeria?" he queried.
For Joy Odimegwu, a Ph.D. researcher in the Department of Pharmacognosy, University of Lagos (UNILAG), the extinction of medicinal plants is a great threat to the development of traditional medicine in the country. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation award winner wants biotechnological methods to be used in preserving this African inheritance and a gene bank should be set up to preserve "industrial and medicinal plants in Africa." Otherwise, "we are in a great trouble", she said.
As the continent draws to the end of the African Traditional Medicine decade next year, it is hoped that Nigeria and other African countries will put everything into perspective, not only to integrate traditional medicine into the nations' healthcare system, but to also make it a multi-billion dollar generating business for the continent.
Diane Abbott: British MP
A mother’s choice
By Tamara Gausi - Published in the New Statesman
Who, in recent times, has had a more controversial education than James Thompson, the son of the Labour MP Diane Abbott? In 2003, aged 12, he was forced publicly to defend his mother after she sent him to the £10,000-a-year City of London School. Now, Thompson has made his way to Tema, Ghana, to study at the SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College (£3,000 a year fees, plus £2,400 for board). “Couldn’t he have got in touch with his African roots in Hackney?” wrote one anti-Abbott commentator online.
Professor Gus John, a fellow of the Institute of Education and a leading commentator on race and education, is more understanding. “I think that most black children growing up in this country, irrespective of whether they go to a private school or a state school, should have an opportunity to go to school in a black country that is of some significance to their heritage,” he says. “It’s very easy to form the view that knowledge is valid only when it comes from a European perspective. Being schooled in black institutions of learning helps young people to get not just a sense of their own identity, self-esteem and history, but also an alternative world-view.”
But what does it say about our state education system if even a left-wing Labour MP does not want her son to use it? Poverty of ambition, socioeconomic challenges relating to crime and single-parent families, institutional racism and under-resourced schools are just some of the factors that contribute to low educational outcomes for many children of African and Caribbean origin. However, as the son of a Cambridge-educated politician, James was never in any danger of being one of the 70 per cent of black boys in London who leave school without five GCSEs graded A*-C (he got 11 A* grades). The inequalities in our education system are primarily about class. Race just compounds the issue.
In joining the ranks of African and Caribbean parents who send their children abroad for at least part of their education, Abbott embodies the aspirations of many black parents. “This country treats the underachievement of black children as if it is in their DNA,” says Professor John. “But children schooled in the Caribbean and Africa learn they can excel, because quite simply nothing less is expected of them.”
The writer, poet and publisher Nii Ayikwei Parkes believes he and his brother were rescued from underachievement when the family moved back to Ghana. “The teachers at my brother’s primary school told my father that he should go to an educationally subnormal school, as they called it in the Seventies, because they thought that he was slow. He was just quiet, but the tragedy is that a lot of parents in the same situation probably took that advice.”
After studying at Achimota School, one of Ghana’s most prestigious institutions, Parkes’s brother took an MBA in the US and became an investment banker. “In Ghana, you are surrounded by images of successful black people: the newsreaders are black, the pilots are black, the doctors are black. Success is normalised.”
But what of those whose parents cannot afford to opt out of the state system? Abbott professes to believe in an egalitarian society, but by buying her son’s education, she ultimately helps to entrench the divide in our society between the haves and the have-nots – of whatever race.
International freedom in Education Day
15 Sept is International freedom in Education Day. We’ll be marking this with a ‘Not back to school’ Picnic in Paddington Street Gardens (south) from 11:30-4:30.
Click for more details
There will be many ‘not back to school’ picnics going on nationally in an attempt to get some publicity for home ed and our concerns/anger at the Badman recommendations.
History Today: "Know Your Enemy" - African Proverb, Swahili
Aidan Heavey: Rewarded for exploiting African resources
Profile: Aidan Heavey
Published: 14 September 2009
Tullow Oil has a market valuation of $13bn (£7.8bn), is a member of the FTSE 100 and is the largest independent oil company in Britain
Tullow Oil's chief executive and founder, Aidan Heavey, may need some help managing the £28.8m he made last year. A former financial controller for Aer Lingus, he once admitted that he was a "crap accountant".
Heavey joined Tullow Engineering in 1981, a small family-owned firm based near Dublin. The firm had a subsidiary, Tullow Oil, running fuel oil tankers. Heavey decided to buy out the subsidiary, relaunching the company in 1985 as an oil-producing company with horizons far beyond the shores of Ireland.
He got the idea after being tipped off by a banker who told him that the world was littered with valuable oil fields that were ignored by big companies because they were too small. Heavey plumped for Senegal to base his new venture, even though he was not entirely sure where it was.
He mortgaged himself up to the hilt and sold his collection of vintage cars to raise the cash for the new company. Today, Tullow Oil has a market valuation of $13bn (£7.8bn), is a member of the FTSE 100 and is the largest independent oil company in Britain. It operates in 22 countries.
Tullow Oil's big gamble came in 2004 when it bought Energy Africa. The deal doubled the company's size and gave it a large presence in Africa.
Tullow's results last year were as spectacular as Heavey's bulging pay packet. He cashed in £24m in share options and received £3m in awards vesting under the company's share-based long-term incentive plan, as well as his £640,500 basic salary. Last year the company made a pre-tax profit of £299m, up 162% on the previous year, helped by a record oil price. Profits for the first half of this year were predictably much more modest after a collapse in the oil price. But the firm maintained its dividend. Heavey still owns 0.8% of Tullow Oil, worth more than $100m.
Barack Obama: US President
|Obama's big silence: the race question:
Has the president turned his back on African Americans?
By Naomi Klein Published in The Guardian, Saturday 12 September 2009
Americans began the summer still celebrating the dawn of a "post-racial" era. They are ending it under no such illusion. The summer of 2009 was all about race, beginning with Republican claims that Sonia Sotomayor, Barack Obama's nominee to the US Supreme Court, was "racist" against whites. Then, just as that scandal was dying down, up popped "the Gates controversy", the furore over the president's response to the arrest of African American academic Henry Louis Gates Jr in his own home. Obama's remark that the police had acted "stupidly" was evidence, according to massively popular Fox News host Glenn Beck, that the president "has a deep-seated hatred for white people".
Obama's supposed racism gave a jolt of energy to the fringe movement that claims he has been carrying out a lifelong conspiracy to cover up his (fictional) African birth. Then Fox News gleefully discovered Van Jones, White House special adviser on green jobs. After weeks of being denounced as "a black nationalist who is also an avowed communist", Jones resigned last Sunday.
The undercurrent of all these attacks was that Obama, far from being the colour-blind moderate he posed as during the presidential campaign, is actually obsessed with race, in particular with redistributing white wealth into the hands of African Americans and undocumented Mexican workers. At town hall meetings across the US in August, these bizarre claims coalesced into something resembling an uprising to "take our country back". Henry D Rose, chair of Blacks For Social Justice, recently compared the overwhelmingly white, often armed, anti-Obama crowds to the campaign of "massive resistance" launched in the late 50s – a last-ditch attempt by white southerners to block the racial integration of their schools and protect other Jim Crow laws. Today's "new era of 'massive resistance'," writes Rose, "is also a white racial project."
There is at least one significant difference, however. In the late 50s and early 60s, angry white mobs were reacting to life-changing victories won by the civil rights movement. Today's mobs, on the other hand, are reacting to the symbolic victory of an African American winning the presidency. Yet they are rising up at a time when non-elite blacks and Latinos are losing significant ground, with their homes and jobs slipping away from them at a much higher rate than from whites. So far, Obama has been unwilling to adopt policies specifically geared towards closing this ever-widening divide. The result may well leave minorities with the worst of all worlds: the pain of a full-scale racist backlash without the benefits of policies that alleviate daily hardships. Meanwhile, with Obama constantly painted by the radical right as a cross between Malcolm X and Karl Marx, most progressives feel it is their job to defend him – not to point out that, when it comes to tackling the economic crisis ravaging minority communities, the president is not doing nearly enough.
For many antiracist campaigners, the realisation that Obama might not be the leader they had hoped for came when he announced his administration would be boycotting the UN Durban Review Conference on racism, widely known as "Durban II". Almost all of the public debate about the conference focused on its supposed anti-Israel bias. When it actually took place in April in Geneva, virtually all we heard about was Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's inflammatory speech, which was met with rowdy disruptions, from the EU delegates who walked out, to the French Jewish students who put on clown wigs and red noses, and tried to shout him down.
Lost in the circus atmosphere was the enormous importance of the conference to people of African descent, and nowhere more so than among Obama's most loyal base. The US civil rights movement had embraced the first Durban conference, held in summer 2001, with great enthusiasm, viewing it as the start of the final stage of Martin Luther King's dream for full equality. Though most black leaders offered only timid public criticism of the president's Durban II boycott, the decision was discussed privately as his most explicit betrayal of the civil rights struggle since taking office.
The original 2001 gathering was not all about Israelis v Palestinians, or antisemitism, as so many have claimed (though all certainly played a role). The conference was overwhelmingly about Africa, the ongoing legacy of slavery and the huge unpaid debts that the rich owe the poor.
Holding the 2001 World Conference against Racism in what was still being called "the New South Africa" had seemed a terrific idea. World leaders would gather to congratulate themselves on having slain the scourge of apartheid, then pledge to defeat the world's few remaining vestiges of discrimination – things such as police violence, unequal access to certain jobs, lack of adequate healthcare for minorities and intolerance towards immigrants.
Appropriate disapproval would be expressed for such failures of equality, and a well-meaning document pledging change would be signed to much fanfare. That, at least, is what western governments expected to happen.
They were mistaken. When the conference arrived in Durban, many delegates were shocked by the angry mood in the streets: tens of thousands of South Africans joined protests outside the conference centre, holding signs that said "Landlessness = racism" and "New apartheid: rich and poor". Many denounced the conference as a sham, and demanded concrete reparations for the crimes of apartheid. South Africa's disillusionment, though particularly striking given its recent democratic victory, was part of a much broader global trend, one that would define the conference, in both the streets and the assembly halls. Around the world, developing countries were increasingly identifying the so-called Washington Consensus economic policies as little more than a clever rebranding effort, a way for former northern colonial powers to continue to drain the southern countries of their wealth without being inconvenienced by the heavy lifting of colonialism. Roughly two years before Durban, a coalition of developing countries had refused further to liberalise their economies, leading to the collapse of World Trade Organisation talks in Seattle. A few months later, a newly militant movement calling for a debt jubilee disrupted the annual meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Durban was a continuation of this mounting southern rebellion, but it added something else to the mix: an invoice for past thefts.
Although it was true that southern countries owed debts to foreign banks and lending institutions, it was also true that in the colonial period – the first wave of globalisation – the wealth of the north was built, in large part, on stolen indigenous land and free labour provided by the slave trade. Many in Durban argued that when these two debts were included in the calculus, it was actually the poorest regions of the world – especially Africa and the Caribbean – that turned out to be the creditors and the rich world that owed a debt. All big UN conferences tend to coalesce around a theme, and in Durban 2001 the clear theme was the call for reparations. The overriding message was that even though the most visible signs of racism had largely disappeared – colonial rule, apartheid, Jim Crow-style segregation – profound racial divides will persist and even widen until the states and corporations that profited from centuries of state-sanctioned racism pay back some of what they owe.
African and Caribbean governments came to Durban with two key demands. The first was for an acknowledgment that slavery and even colonialism itself constituted "crimes against humanity" under international law; the second was for the countries that perpetrated and profited from these crimes to begin to repair the damage. Most everyone agreed that reparations should include a clear and unequivocal apology for slavery, as well as a commitment to returning stolen artefacts and to educating the public about the scale and impact of the slave trade. Above and beyond these more symbolic acts, there was a great deal of debate. Dudley Thompson, former Jamaican foreign minister and a longtime leader in the Pan-African movement, was opposed to any attempt to assign a number to the debt: "It is impossible to put a figure to killing millions of people, our ancestors," he said. The leading reparations voices instead spoke of a "moral debt" that could be used as leverage to reorder international relations in multiple ways, from cancelling Africa's foreign debts to launching a huge develop ment programme for Africa on a par with Europe's Marshall Plan. What was emerging was a demand for a radical New Deal for the global south.
African and Caribbean countries had been holding high-level summits on reparations for a decade, with little effect. What prompted the Durban breakthrough was that a similar debate had taken off inside the US. The facts are familiar, if commonly ignored. Even as individual blacks break the colour barrier in virtually every field, the correlation between race and poverty remains deeply entrenched. Blacks in the US consistently have dramatically higher rates of infant mortality, HIV infection, incarceration and unemployment, as well as lower salaries, life expectancy and rates of home ownership. The biggest gap, however, is in net worth. By the end of the 90s, the average black family had a net worth one eighth the national average. Low net worth means less access to traditional credit (and, as we'd later learn, more sub-prime mortgages). It also means families have little besides debt to pass from one generation to the next, preventing the wealth gap closing on its own.
In 2000, Randall Robinson published The Debt: What America Owes To Blacks, which argued that "white society… must own up to slavery and acknowledge its debt to slavery's contemporary victims". The book became a national bestseller, and within months the call for reparations was starting to look like a new anti-apartheid struggle. Students demanded universities disclose their historical ties to the slave trade, city councils began holding public hearings on reparations, chapters of the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America had sprung up across the country and Charles Ogletree, the celebrated Harvard law professor (and one of Obama's closest mentors), put together a team of all-star lawyers to try to win reparations lawsuits in US courts.
By spring 2001, reparations had become the hot-button topic on US talkshows and op-ed pages. And though opponents consistently portrayed the demand as blacks wanting individual handouts from the government, most reparations advocates were clear they were seeking group solutions: mass scholarship funds, for instance, or major investments in preventive healthcare, inner cities and crumbling schools. By the time Durban rolled around in late August, the conference had taken on the air of a black Woodstock. Angela Davis was coming. So were Jesse Jackson and Danny Glover. Small radical groups such as the National Black United Front spent months raising money to buy hundreds of plane tickets to South Africa. Activists travelled to Durban from 168 countries, but the largest delegation by far came from the US: approximately 3,000 people, roughly 2,000 of them African Americans. Ogletree pumped up the crowds with an energetic address: "This is a movement that cannot be stopped… I promise we will see reparations in our lifetime."
The call for reparations took many forms, but one thing was certain: antiracism was transformed in Durban from something safe and comfortable for elites to embrace into something explosive and potentially very, very costly. North American and European governments, the debtors in this new accounting, tried desperately to steer the negotiations on to safe terrain. "We are better to look forward and not point fingers backward," national security adviser Condoleezza Rice said. It was a losing battle. Durban, according to Amina Mohamed, chief negotiator for the Africa bloc, was Africa's "rendezvous with history".
Not everyone was willing to show up for the encounter, however, and that is where the Israel controversies come in. Durban, it should be remembered, took place in the aftermath of the collapse of the Oslo Accords, and there were those who hoped the conference could somehow fill the political vacuum. Six months before the meeting in Durban, at an Asian preparatory conference in Tehran, a few Islamic countries requested language in their draft of the Durban Declaration that described Israeli policies in the occupied territories as "a new kind of apartheid" and a "form of genocide". Then, a month before the conference, there was a new push for changes: references to the Holocaust were paired with the "ethnic cleansing of the Arab population in historic Palestine", while references to "the increase in antisemitism and hostile acts against Jews" were twinned with phrases about "the increase of racist practices of Zionism", and Zionism was described as a movement "based on racism and discriminatory ideas".
There were cases to be made for all of it, but this was language sure to tear the meeting apart (just as "Zionism equals racism" resolutions had torn apart UN gatherings before). Meanwhile, as soon as the conference began, the parallel forum for non-governmental organisations began to spiral out of control. With more than 8,000 participants and no ground rules to speak of, the NGO forum turned into a free-for-all, with, among other incidents, the Arab Lawyers Union passing out a booklet that contained Der Stürmer–style cartoons of hook-nosed Jews with bloody fangs.
High-profile NGO and civil rights leaders roundly condemned the antisemitic incidents, as did Mary Robinson, then UN high commissioner for human rights. None of the controversial language about Israel and Zionism made it into the final Durban Declaration. But for the newly elected administration of George W Bush, that was besides the point. Already testing the boundaries of what would become a new era of US unilateralism, Bush latched on to the gathering's alleged anti-Israel bias as the perfect excuse to flee the scene, neatly avoiding the debates over Israel and reparations. Early in the conference, the US and Israel walked out.
Despite the disruptions, Africa was not denied its rendezvous with history. The final Durban Declaration became the first document with international legal standing to state that "slavery and the slave trade are a crime against humanity and should always have been so, especially the transatlantic slave trade". This language was more than symbolic. When lawyers had sought to win slavery reparations in US courts, the biggest barrier was always the statute of limitations, which had long since expired. But if slavery was "a crime against humanity", it was not restricted by any statute.
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Rites of Passage: Training, Healing and Meditation
Akoben: Symbol of vigilance and wariness. Akoben is a horn used to sound a battle cry.
Spirit of the Warrior
Date: Every Week
Adm: 1st lesson is free. Thereafter, £4.50 per lesson. Members £2.50 per lesson
Mashufaa is a martial are created for the mental, physical and spiritual upliftment of a generation of people who have become detached from themselves! Mashufaa is about living a life with light through the sweat of training. Sweat lets you know you are alive.
Remember Mind, Body and Spirit are one. Train to live and live to train. Mashufaa Classes will take place from at The Albany Theatre (Plum Room) nearest Rail: Deptford or DLR Deptford Bridge.
Monday and Fridays
Venue: Lord Morrison Hall, Chestnut Grove( off Scales Rd), Tottenham, London N17 9ET
Travel: Tube: Seven Sisters (Victoria Line), Tottenham Hale / Rail: Bruce Grove / Buses: 243, 341, 149, 259,279
Venue: Boy Scouts Centre (Near Bruce Castle Park), All Hallows Road, London N17 7ADTube: Travel: Seven Sisters (Victoria Line), Tottenham Hale / Rail: Bruce Grove / Buses: 123, 243, W4
Venue: The Plum Room, The Albany Theatre/Centre, Douglas Way, Deptford, London SE8 4AG
Tube: New Cross / Rail: Deptford Station / Buses: 53, 453, 177
Tel: 07956 337391/ 07715 942734
Community Media: Pan African
Pan African People's Phone In
Time: 22:00 - Midnight
Where: Galaxy Radio 99.5 FM (www.afiwestation.com)
Number for on-air discussion: 07908 117 619
The Pan-Afrikan People’s Phone-in is a space for themed interactive discussions conducted over the airwaves and cyberspace. The themes are focused around issues affecting Afrikan people both locally and globally.
Africa Speaks with Alkebulan / Sister Ekua (aka Esther Stanford-Xosei)
Where: Voice of Africa Radio (VOAR) / 94.3FM
When: Every Monday / Wednesday 8-10 pm GMT
Number for on-air discussion: 0208 180 2523
New African Magazine
The worlds most authoritative, best selling Pan African magazine.
The authoritative electronic weekly newsletter and platform for social justice in AfricaYou can help Pambazuka News become independent. Become a supporting subscriber by taking out a paid subscription. Donate $30 a year http://www.pambazuka.org/en/donate.php
Shoot The Messenger
Where: Vox Africa
When: Every sunday, 6-7PM
Current affairs on the Pan African TV channel with Henry Bonsu
Exhibition: Life of Kwame Nkrumah and Launch of Lexicon on Kwame Nkrumah.
When: 13 September- 10 October 2009, 10:30 - 17:30
Where: 7 Adamafio Close,
Marcus Garvey Next Generation
(Young people’s section of the Marcus Garvey Organising Committee)
When: Tuesday 15th September 2009, 6:30pm sharp
Where: 44 -46 Offley Road, SW9 0LS (off Brixton Road , near Oval Tube - Buses: 3. 36, 59, 133, 155, 159, 185, 436)
Return of the Monthly Action Awareness workshops
Michael Jackson(1958 – 2009) (RIP):
The Impact on Black Youth Past + Present
Invited speakers:· Shaka-Ra – spoken word artist and freedom fighter (ARM and Best Kept Secret)· Jerimyah – conscious youth worker· Plus other youth speakers Young people will be given priority during Q&A
Sponsored by SMA
Marcus Garvey Next Generation are currently establishing a Stop + Search surgery to advise those who have been abused by the police – check us for further details.
Further info: 07940 005 907 www.pascf.org.uk
Support your local community radio station – weekends – Galaxy 99.5fm – www.afiwestation.com
||V&A Black Heritage Season: Beneath the Surface
When: September 15, 2009 at 10am to November 28, 2009 at 5:30pm
Where: Victoria and Albert Museum
Visit the Victoria and Albert Museum between now and the November 28th, and discover a treasure trove of objects from the African continent.
Learn about the relationship and movement of people and objects between Brisitan, Africa and its diaspora. Participate in a range of vibrant events including curator led talks, gallery tours, creative learning workshops, film screenings, music and performance.
Organized By: BFS MD - Generation to Generation & Caribbean UK Film Festival
Doing the Right Thing: An Exploration
of the Cinema of Spike Lee
Whe 16, 30 Sept 2009, 18:30 – 20:30
Where: BFI Southbank, SE1,
Adm: £36.00 (£26.60 concs)
This four-week course will offer a critical
perspective on the life and work of this
leading independent director.
Tickets 020 7928 3232
Ndoro Children's Charities Fundraising Gala 2009
When: Thursday 17th September 2009
Where: Dorchester, Park Lane, Mayfair W1
Adm: Tickets are £200 and there are tables of 10 or 12 available for £2000 / £2400To book your table and ticket please call 0207 609 6775 | 07958713293
The Ndoro Children's Charities Fundraising Gala 2009
will be hosted by Michelle Williams (Destiny's Child) & Martin Roberts (Homes under the Hammer) at the Dorchester, Park Lane, Mayfair W1On the EVE of London Fashion Week - Thursday 17th September 2009
The evening comprises a 4 course Dinner, followed by a fashion Show from 20 London Fashion Week designers including Marc Jacobs, Nicole Farhi, Charlotte Olympia & Maria Grachvogel... …and entertainment from the Michelle Williams, Nate Evan's - The Temptations, The London Community Gospel Choir, Mutya, Hannah & Thomas Spencer Wortley!
Come join us and help raise funds to build an orphanage home school and clinic that will give 500 children a home and access to education for the first time in their precious innocent lives.
Tickets are £200 and there are tables of 10 or 12 available for £2000 / £2400
To book your table and ticket please call 0207 609 6775 | 07958713293
Corporate discounts are available for hospitality
If you are thinking you can not afford to come, ask yourself this... How many times a year do you really get to dress up? How many times have you spent more than £200 on a rubbish night out or something you do not use or wear? How many times do you get to experience London Fashion Week? How many times do you get to go to one of the finest and most prestigious ballrooms in the country and have dinner? How many times have you been to an event with such a varied and great lineup of entertainment? And finally, how many times do you get treated to all of that while supporting a great and worthy cause, helping to make a difference?
The 2nd Annual Ghana Business & Investment Exhibition
When: Saturday 19th September 2009
Where: The Bernie Grants Art Centre, Tottenham, London
Due to popular demand and a successful launch in 2008; the Ghana Black Stars Network are presenting the 2nd Annual Ghana Business & Investment Exhibition on Saturday 19th September 2009 at the Berne Grants Art Centre, Tottenham, London.
With a strong cedi against the dollar, interest rates going down, a thriving economy, a growing middle class and a pool of opportunities for the business minded, Ghana is on the international platform growing from the seeds that have been sown.
With all industries from Construction to Agriculture to any service industry open for all; The Ghana Business & Investment Exhibition will provide delegates with the opportunity to hear from key industry professionals on Ghana’s development and opportunities. The event is also a chance for business minded individuals to network and share ideas on doing business in Ghana.
This year’s event is in partnership with the Ghana High Commission UK and Ghana Investment Promotion Centre. Media partners include: African Business magazine, New African magazine, Trumpet newspaper, African Caribbean Business Network, Find-A-Job in Africa, Re-Connect Africa, African Voice newspaper and BEN TV.
To contact us and find out more information about the event or GBSN please contact:
0788 6411 661
The Horizon Venture
When: Wednesday, September 23, 2009, 8:00pm - 10:00pm
Where: Jacksons Lane Theatre, 269a Archway Road, Highgate, London, N6 5AA
Adm: Tickets £10/£8/£5 - see below for details
As a prelude to African History Month, the J-Life trio of Robert Mitchell, Daniel Crosby and Taylor, (award winning editor of www.jazzreloaded.com ) are reunited on stage for the first time in a decade for a live multimedia show based on Vidal Montgomery’s pulp sci-fi book, The Horizon Venture, a futuristic retrospective on the middle passage. With visuals by Des Taylor, physical theatre by Nicole Pschetz, narration and vocals by Nanar Vorperian. Plus Chris Jerome ( keys), and Donald Gamble, (percussion)
The Horizon Venture is the Race for Space, reloaded; it’s a pulp science fiction multimedia mashup; video, visuals, spoken word, narrative, physical theatre and dance all set to live music performed by the UK’s top improvisers.
The Horizon Venture is an expression of ideas of citizenship and humanity as they relate to us now, and as they will relate to us when we discover worlds beyond our own.
2009 marks the 400th anniversary of the launch of the Sea Venture, which set sail from England headed for the New World, laden with enslaved African humans, forced into establishing colonial settlements.
2009 also marks the 40th anniversary of the Apollo Space program’s moon landing, in which The leader of that New World again began a quest to explore unknown worlds at a time when many in his New World were still fighting for free access to voting, books, transport, things that can easily be taken for granted today.
Today, the leader of that New World is of direct African descent. And he observes that "There is another generation of kids out there that is looking up at the sky and they'll be the next Armstrong, Collins and Aldrin"
Today, as we look again to Mars and beyond the stars, The Horizon Venture invites AfroPeans in particular, and urbanites in general, to ensure they are truly stakeholders in our collective vision for the future through multimedia – and in so doing, perhaps express their own solutions to tomorrow’s problems today, a little closer to home.
First 30 people to register at www.thehorizonventure.com are eligible for £5 tickets . All other tickets £10/£8 concs.
Book all tickets by telephone @ the Jacksons Lane Box Office on 020 8341 4421
Web: www.jacksonslane.org.uk /
Black British Perspectives: Visual Arts
Date: Wednesday 23 September
Venue:32-40 Bank Street Sheffield S1 2DS
T:0114 346 3034
Raimi Gbadamosi, artist, writer and curator, chairs a discussion between Paul Goodwin, Curator of Cross Cultural Programmes at Tate Britain and Sonya Dyer, artist, writer and co-ordinator of Chelsea Programme at Chelsea College of Art & Design.
They will be discussing various issues including what has been written into history, exploring the need to take into account diverse historical realities in order to move arts practice forward, the notion of canon, the validity of experiences, and future art and art practice.
Rsvp by 18 Sep to
Where: London UK
24th – 27th September 2009
A creative arts Training course specialising in:
- Augusto Boal techniques
- Youth Arts
- Exploring issues;
- Arts within Criminal Justice Settings
This highly practical hands-on course is particularly suited to people who want to experience and practise a variety of creative action methods in group work to explore issues, make theatre or work within challenging contexts.
Who is this for?
People interested in using drama and theatre as a tool to explore personal and social issues, and for people who want to gain new skills to fulfil their obligation and commitment to the people they serve. The course covers exercises with explanations, instructions and suggestions to help you develop your own style and approach. The creative action methods can be readily adapted to a wide range of settings with adults and young people.
The course is a resource for: performers, youth workers, social/health workers, PSHE specialists, drama graduates, project managers, community workers, artists, workshop leaders, teachers, theatre practitioners, creative art therapists, counsellors, mental health workers, team builders and special needs workers.
No previous drama experience is necessary however a willingness to actively explore new methods of working is an essential requirement. This will also be an opportunity for professional development, networking and skill sharing so as to enable continued high standards of good practice.
Course running this year (2009)
All courses delivered by Tony Cealy. The London courses cost £130.00 each (£90.00 if booked 3 months before course starts)
All Participants receive a free TRAINING MANUAL on completion.
Limited amount of reduced rates available - Fees can be paid in instalments - Deposits welcome
For more information please contact www.tonycealy.com 07956 877358
When: Thursday, 24th September, 2009
Where: The Tabernacle, Powis Square, London
Adm: £6 in advance from bookslam.com/ £8 on the door (Doors open 6pm, stuff starts around 8pm)
This month, Book Slam battens down the hatches for the long dark nights ahead in the company of: -
- WILLIAM BOYD - 'English fiction's master storyteller' (Independent) reading from his brand new novel, 'Ordinary Thunderstorms', the electrifying follow-up to Costa Novel of the Year, 'Restless'.
- DON PATERSON - Winner of the Forward Poetry Prize, the TS Eliot Prize and the Whitbread Poetry Award, reading from his latest collection, 'Rain'.
- NETSAYI - one of our very favourite performers, the Zimbabwean singer-songwriter's launching her new album, 'Monkeys' Wedding', in preparation for her UK tour with Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
- Plus DJ ILS, the Serb from the burbs.
Food available from the excellent Tabernacle kitchen. Come early. Eat well. Misbehave.
||DNA Advice Clinic
When: 25th September 2009
Diane Abbott MP and the human rights charity Liberty will be holding a DNA database clinic in Hackney. If you, or anyone you know, has not been convicted of a crime but has their DNA on the national DNA database and would like advice on getting their DNA wiped off the database, then call the number below. Lawyers from Liberty will be on hand at the clinic to offer help and advice on the DNA database.
To book an appointment at the clinic call: 020 7378 3668 or 020 7378 3657. Alternatively you can email: DNA@liberty-human-rights.org.uk. The clinic will take place on the 25th September from 4.30 – 6pm in Hackney
100 Mothers Movement: Health Fair
When: Saturday 26th September 2009. 12pm-6pm
Where: St Anns Library, Cissbury Road, Tottenham. N15 5PU
Free health fair organised by the 100 Mothers Movement. An educational day for all the family focusing particularly on Black womens health (but brothers are welcome!) The day will include fitness demonstartions, taster sessions, smoothie making and juicing, breathing and meditation, lectures, seminars, stalls and food...
Contact: Tanya on 07506 826243 or Marchu on 07958 671267. Email is firstname.lastname@example.org
African Odysseys Screenings: Democracy in Dakar
When: Sat 26 Sep 14:00
Where: BFI Southbank, SE1,
Adm: Matinee tickets £5
Inspiring films from the hip-hop
youth of Dakar to the cinematic
infuence of Spike Lee
Democracy in Dakar
USA 2009. Dir Ben Herson, Magee McIlvaine
and Christopher Moore. 69min. EST
A guerrilla documentary about hip-hop
youth and politics in dakar, senegal.
Tickets 020 7928 3232 /
One Heart Beat Drumming Session
Date: Saturday 26th September 2009, 5:30 - 9:00pm
Venue: The Harrow Club, 187 Freston Road, London W10 6TH
Fuboh invites our men to Come and let the spirit of the drum re-connect us with our root - Nature & The Ancestors. You don't have to be a master drummer. Just come with your heart. This is for our fathers, brothers and sons.
Contact: 07956 673255 / EMail: email@example.com
||African and South Asian Britain Seminars
Where: Room G32, Senate House, (Institute or Commonwealth Studies, University of London), Russell Square, London WC1
When: September to December 2009: 6 to 7.30 pm
Adm: Everyone is welcome. You do not have to pre-book/register.
16 September, Jeff Green, Uncle Tom, the Chinese laundry man, and ‘Justice’ in England and Wales, 1888 – 1905
7 October, Bill Gulam, The "academy" and black labour
4 November, H.E. Ross, Black People Don't Sail
2 December, Cliff Pereira, Black and Asian Community Voice and Local History. – the Bexley Example.
Dr. Runoko Rasidi Lectures
Where: Casp Hall, 14, Badsworth Road, Camberwell, London, SE5 0JY (near Camberwell Green)
When: Thurs 1 October - Friday 2 October 2009, 7:15 - 8:45 pm
Adm: £5.00 at the door (each evening)
Part 1 : 7.15pm to 8.45pm. Topic: African Presence in Early Europe
Part 2 : 7.15pm to 8.45pm. Topic: The Nile Valley Presence in Asian Antiquity
Runoko Rashidi's guided tour: Egypt & Nubia
When: Saturday 3 October 2009, 10.30am to 12 noon.
Where: British Museum, Russell Street, London, WC2B 3DG
Adm: £10: Pre-booking necessary.
African Queens in Antiquity (Nefertiti, Nefertari, and others)
When: Sunday 4 October 2009, from 2pm to 4pm.
Where: Museum in Docklands, West India Quay, London, E14 4AL
Adm: £5: Pre-booking necessary
Dr Runoko Rashidi is an historian, world traveller, and public lecturer focusing on the African presence globally and the African foundations of world civilisations. He is particularly drawn to the African presence in Asia, Australia, and the Pacific Islands, and has coordinated historic educational group tours to India, Aboriginal Australia, the Fiji Islands and Southeast Asia as well as Egypt, Ghana, Turkey, Jordan and Brazil
Contact: Arthur Torrington - Mobile. 079 8511 0501.
African History Overview course
When: 3 October 2009, 3-6pm
Adm: £10 per session plus £20 registration
AFRICAN HISTORY IS NOT JUST FOR OCTOBER
BTWSC will be launching its OCN Level 2 African History Overview course during the Oct. 3 2009 Ayekoo session What Is African History? Followed by 3 weekly classes starting Saturday Oct. 10 2009, 3-6pm. £10 per session plus £20 registration, or £30 upon registering to cover classes and certificate registration. 020 8450 5987, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Runoko Rashidi: Historian
|Runoko Rashidi: London Weekender
Ancient Future in conjunction with Muatta Books present Runoko Rashidi
Saturday 3rd October 2009 - Sunday 4th October 2009
Where: Happy People Restaurant - 160 Page Green Terrace, High Rd Tottenham, London, N15 4NU
Adm: £10 per night
Part 1 (Sat 6pm - 10pm): Indigenous Global Presence in the Ancient & Modern World
Part 2 (Sun 4pm - 8pm): Indigenous Global Presence in the Ancient & Modern World
Runoko Rashidi is a historian, research specialist, writer, world traveller, and public lecturer focusing on the African presence globally and the African foundations of world civilizations. He is particularly drawn to the African presence in Asia, Australia, and the Pacific Islands, and has coordinated historic educational group tours to India, Aboriginal Australia, the Fiji Islands and Southeast Asia as well as Egypt, Ghana, Turkey, Jordan and Brazil. Rashidi’s presentations are customized and suitable for all audiences and ages, and are lively, engaging, and vividly illustrated.
Runoko is the author of Introduction to the Study of African Classical Civilizations, the editor, along with Dr. Ivan Van Sertima of Rutgers University, of the African Presence in Early Asia, considered “the most comprehensive volume on the subject yet produced”, and a major pamphlet titled the Global African Community: The African Presence in Asia, Australia and the South Pacific. In 1995, he completed editing Unchained African Voices, a collection of poetry and prose by Death Row inmates at California’s San Quentin maximum-security prison. In December 2005 Editions Monde Global released Runoko’s latest work and his first French language text, A Thousand Year History of the African Presence in Asia.
His historical essays have been prominently featured in virtually all of the critically acclaimed Journal of Civilizations anthologies edited by Dr. Ivan Van Sertima, and cover the broad spectrum of the African presence globally. Rashidi’s Journal of African Civilizations essays include: “African Goddesses: Mothers of Civilization,” “Ancient and Modern Britons,” “The African Presence in Prehistoric America,” “A Tribute to Dr. Chancellor James Williams,” “Ramses the Great: The Life and Times of a Bold Black Egyptian King,” “The Moors in Antiquity,” and the “Nile Valley Presence in Asian Antiquity.”
Included among the notable African scholars that Runoko has worked with and been influenced by are: John Henrik Clarke, John G. Jackson, Yosef ben-Jochannan, Chancellor James Williams, Charles B. Copher, Edward Vivian Scobie, Ivan Van Sertima, Asa G. Hilliard III, Karen Ann Johnson, Obadele Williams, Charles S. Finch, James E. Brunson, Wayne B. Chandler, Legrand H. Clegg II, Dr. Toni Humber, and Jan Carew.
He believes that his principle missions in life are to help make Africans proud of themselves, to help change the way Africa is viewed in the world, and to help reunite a family of people that has been separated far too long.
As a scholar, Runoko Rashidi has been called the world’s leading authority on the African presence in Asia. Since 1986, he has worked actively with the Dalits (India’s Black Untouchables). In 1987, he was a keynote speaker at the first All-India Dalits Writer’s Conference, held in Hyderabad, India, and spoke on the “Global Unity of African People.” In 1998, he returned to India to lecture study and sojourn with the Dalits and Adivasis (the indigenous people of India). In 1999, he led a group of seventeen African-Americans to India, and became the first ever non-Indian recipient of the prestigious Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Memorial Award. On December 5, 2002 Runoko Rashidi was granted an honorary doctor of divinity degree by the Amen-Ra Theological Seminary in Los Angeles, California.
How to get there?
Happy People Restaurant - 160 Page Green Terrace, High Rd Tottenham, London, N15 4NU
Tube & Train: Seven Sisters (Victoria Line 4 mins) / South Tottenham (London Overground 1 min)
Buses: 73, 76, 149, 243, 318, 349, 476 (Stop directly outside building
-Vendors Welcome! –
For more information contact Ancient Future: Tel: 07506481509 / 07956134370
||Workshop: Invisible Theatre
Where: London UK
8th – 11th October 2009
An intensive fun-packed charged weekend workshop suited to people who want skills experience & knowledge in creating issue-based scenes that are performed in public without the public knowing the scenes have been staged.
Come and lose yourself within the mysteries of invisible theatre and learn techniques of the Theatre of the Oppressed and those pioneered by Augusto Boal, Keith Johnston, Clive Barker and many others.
Led by Tony Cealy
The workshop costs £90.00 Spaces are limited.
For workshop information guide and booking form go to www.tonycealy.com or contact + 44 (0) 7956 877358
African Odysseys Screenings: Playing Away
+ Introduction by Horace Ové (TBC)
When: Sat 10 October 2009, 14:00
Where: BFI Southbank, SE1,
Adm: Matinee tickets £5 (free for seniors)
Inspiring films from the hip-hop
youth of Dakar to the cinematic
infuence of Spike Lee
UK 1986. Dir Horace Ové. With Norman Beaton,
Robert Urquhart. 100min
In this funny and poignant drama, a West
Indian cricket team from Brixton plays
an away match against a local team in
a suffolk village.
Tickets 020 7928 3232 /
An open debate on the Black Arts:
“There is a thin line between love and the BLACK ARTS”
When: Thursday 15th October 2009, 7 – 9PM
Where: Original Gallery, Hornsey Library, Crouch End, London N8 9JA
Artists and creative people from the community are invited to an event presenting solutions to the issues that are facing young and up-and-coming artists who choose a career in the fine arts.
The evening will include a presentation of selective artwork.
||Screening: The John Akii-Bua Story: An African Tragedy
When: Thurs 15 October 2009, 7.30pm
Where: Rich Mix, 35 - 47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA (Screen 3)
Adm: £8 / £6 concs
Dir: Dan Gordon 2008 / UK / 90mins
At the Munich Olympics of 1972, John Akii-Bua became the first African to win gold in an event under 800 metres. This is the story about that amazing triumph - and what happened next. John Akii Bua returned to Uganda carving the name of its military ‘President’ Idi Amin into genocidal notoriety.
For more information visit http://www.richmix.org.uk/film_tigerlilydocs.htm
For tickets, please call the Rich Mix Box Office on 020 7613 7498
or visit www.richmix.org.uk/bookings
||Black British Perspectives: Music
Date: Tuesday 20 October
Venue: The Venue, Leeds College of Music,
3 Quarry Hill, Leeds, LS2 7PD
Tel:0113 222 3400
Music and arts critic Kevin Le Gendre asks guests, singer Sheila Chandra and music manager, Kwame Kwaten (formely of D'Influence), how hard have black and other multi-ethnic British artists had to struggle to be recognised over the years, in order to break through in the mainstream on their own terms? Are there still enough Black powerbrokers in the music industry and media to ensure that original Black voices are given a platform to do what they feel is progressive without pandering to expectations from 'inside' and outside their own community?
Rsvp by 16 Oct
Word Power: International Black Literature Festival & Book Fair
Voices of the Diaspora
When: 24th - 25th October 2009
Where: Ocean, 270 Mare Street, Hackney London E8
Dozens of Authors, hundreds of readers, thousands of Books. All under one roof.
Featuring leading writers, historians, poets, publishers, distributors, book sellers dealing with African Caribbean literature from all over the world.
Bonnie Greer, Dr. Frances Cress Welsing (author of The Isis Papers), Dr Haki R. Madhubuti (Founder and editor of Third World Press), Nia Reynolds, Paul Ifayomi Grant, Wayne B. Chandler, Dr Marimba Ani, Anthony T. Browder, Sister Nzingha Assata, Jacob Ross, Dr Robinson Millwood, Onyeka, Paul Simons, Nathaniel Agbahowe, Debii Mckoy, Charles Emeka, Anton Marks, Dan Obachike, Dr William ‘Lez’ Henry plus many more
Lecture: Dr Frances Cress Welsing
When: 31st October 2009
Time: 6.30 - 10pm
Where: Centreprise, 136 Kingsland High Street, London E8, 2NS
Adm: Tickets £12 adv - £15 on the door
A lecture by Dr Frances Cress Welsing, author of The Isis Papers, the Keys to the Colors
G MaG 10th ANNIVERSARY GALA
When: Sunday 8 November 2009
Were: Seebo’s Banquetting Suite, 761-763 High Road, Leytonstone, London E11 4QS
DOORS: 7:00PM Cabaret Show: 9:30PM Dancing Til 3:00AM
The G MaG 10th Year Anniversary Gala Dance is now scheduled to be held on Sunday 8 November 2009. This Celebrity Gala will host a variety of artists from the differnet types of Black music (Reggae, Soca, R&B, Gospel, Hip-hop, Jazz, African) who will perform a song or two in celebration of the magazine’s ten years. There will also be Poets, Comedians & Dancers and we’re expecting over 30 performers for the night.
ENTRY to this event will be FREE for ALL who want to attend... Special invitation will be sent to prominent figures in the Music, Entertainment, Sports and Business fields under (email and text) RSVP invitation.
We're expecting that the artisans performing will do so as a special contribution to the magazine for the continuous promotion it has given the industry over the years. FREE Refreshments will be provided for Perfomers.
Marcia Griffiths will be a ‘special guest of honour’ at this event. She will open the show andsay a few words - meet and greet some of the artists and fans alike. She will also be presented with an AWARD from the G MaG Crew for her outstanding services to Reggae music.
PLUS a MEDIA WEEK in London is being planned for most of the artists attending the Gala where they will get the unique opportunity to promote their new albums, tours and whatever else they are doing. Three Days of Media for PRINT, RADIO & TV - local and national newspapers and magazines - BBC & Community Radio - BBC, ITV, Sky Networks and Internet Television channels... to give maximum exposure to the artists, the magazine and to Reggae music.
Below is a list of the Artists/Performers who have already confirmed their attendance....
*More to be confirmed later....
Lascelles James - Reggae/Jazz Saxophonist (UK), Dennis Alcapone - Rocksteady Toaster (JA), Winston Reedy - Reggae Singer (UK),
Sylvia Tella - Reggae Singer (UK), Blackstones - Reggae Group,
Backing Band - Ruff Cutt (UK), *D’Angel - Bashment Deejay (JA), *Romain Virgo - Reggae Singer (JA), Isiah Mentor - Roots Singer (USA), Stevie Face - Reggae Singer (JA), MBC (Make Boys Cry) - Reggae Group (JA) , Fresh P - Bashment Deejay (UK), Gappy Ranks - Reggae Sing-jay (UK), Kele Le Roc - R&B Singer (UK), *Sharon St. Louis - Gospel Singer (UK), Scrappy - Soca Singer (UK), *African Simba - Roots Sing-jay, *Tenastelin - Roots Singer (UK), Aaron Kedar - Roots Sing-jay (UK), Clinark - Reggae Singer (Bermuda/UK), Black Slate - Reggae Band (UK), Bryan Bailey - Poet (UK), *Jacinth Francis - Poet (UK)
DJs / Selectors:
LA CJ, Prezedent, LG Brown, DJ Cowboy, TC Fords
Because of the uniqueness of the events, this will greatly enhance and give very good promotion to any future show in the UK for the artists involved.
More details including Sponsors, Hosts and MCs will follow shortly.
G MaG… The Ultimate Magazine for BLACK ENTERTAINMENT… Music... Culture… Lifestyle and MORE… [Formerly GARGAMEL MAGAZINE]
||Black British Perspectives: Style
Date: Thursday 12 November
Location: Impressions Gallery. Centenary Square, Bradford,
T:08450 515 882
Carol Tulloch, Reader in Dress and the African Diaspora at the University of the Arts, London will be in conversation with design consultant Avis Charles, and artist Susan Stockwell, to consider the issue of style and 'blackness'. Is 'Black Style' a term that retains cultural currency? Are the dress styles presented on the black body associated with black culture incorporated into contemporary art?
Rsvp by 9 Nov
African Odysseys Screenings: A Charmed Life
When: Sat 14 November 2009, 14:00
Where: BFI Southbank, SE1,
Adm: Matinee tickets £5
Inspiring films from the hip-hop
youth of Dakar to the cinematic
infuence of Spike Lee
A Charmed Life:
UK 2008. Dir Ros Gihan Williams and
Patrick Vernon. 64min
A warm and inspiring documentary that
examines the life of London resident
eddie Martin noble.
Tickets 020 7928 3232 /
||Workshop: Education 4 Liberation
Where: Taking place in London UK
Saturday 14th November 2009, 10.00am – 6.00pm
Arts Practitioner, Tony Cealy has developed a series of popular education techniques for exploring experiences of Oppression. This intensive hands-on one-day workshop uses complementary approaches based on concepts of the organizing practices of Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed (TOO).
This workshop will be of particular relevance for educationalists, therapists and arts practitioners.
We will actively explore how to use Augusto Boal’s techniques to empower ourselves or others who are marginalised in society.
The workshop costs £40.00 Spaces are limited.
For course guide & to book go to www.tonycealy.com or contact + 44 (0) 7956 877358
||Black British Perspectives: Stage
Date: Monday 30 November
Venue: North Light Gallery, Brooke's Mill, Armitage Bridge,
Huddersfield, HD4 7NR
"The past should not just form the basis of conversations and discussions but serve as the foundation for future artistic works and as the crust of work that organisations use to communicate theatre to schools and further education." (Michael McMillan).
Michael McMillan, stage writer, artist and scholar, along with invited guests, actor and Artistic Director of Tiata Fahodzi, Femi Elufowoju jr. and choreographer and Artistic Director of Jonzi D. Productions, Jonzi D, discuss this, and other issues, such as the need to find new creative approaches to looking back into history and the lack of a suitable discourse on black stage performance and how the matter can be tackled.
Rsvp by 27 Nov
||Black British Perspectives: Literature and Publishing
Date: Monday 7 December
Location: City Inn, Granary Wharf, 2 Wharf Approach, Leeds, LS1 4BR
T:0113 241 1000
Nii Parkes, author and publisher, along with invited guests, writer and publisher, Margaret Busby and author, Diran Adebayo will discuss the dual needs of writers and publishers to retain an independent voice, and discuss the best means to express that voice.
Rsvp by 16 Oct
Screening: The Hunger Season
When: Thurs 10 December 2004, 7.30pm
Where: Rich Mix, 35 - 47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA (Screen 3)
Adm: £8 / £6 concs
Dir: Beadie Finzi 2008 / UK / 74mins
A new documentary on the food crisis gripping the planet. A young teacher and his pupils struggle to survive the worst drought ever in Swaziland, southern Africa. The film connects their fate to the Swazi government, the UN agencies and ultimately Western governments, whose actions will determine the future of one small community.
For more information visit http://www.richmix.org.uk/film_tigerlilydocs.htm
For tickets, please call the Rich Mix Box Office on 020 7613 7498
or visit www.richmix.org.uk/bookings
African Odysseys Screenings: The End of Poverty?
When: Sat 12 December 2009, 14:00
Where: BFI Southbank, SE1,
Adm: Matinee tickets £5
Inspiring films from the hip-hop
youth of Dakar to the cinematic
infuence of Spike Lee
The End of Poverty?:
USA 2008. Dir Philippe Diaz. 104min. EST
Tracing colonial history, this flm challenges
a system in which one person’s comfort
depends on another’s misery
Tickets 020 7928 3232 /