Drawings of Majengo (top) and Kibera by journalist and author (and my former classmate!) Richard Etienne.
Si vous lisez français, check out Richard’s book on Kenyan runners, Le Pays de Coureurs.
This Saturday there will be a School of Oriental and African Studies alumni reunion in Ngong, courtesy of Devon Knudsen (generous host and alumni contact for Kenya). All alumni in the local area are invited to attend this rooftop barbecue reunion. He’d be delighted to see you there, please bring your friends and families along.
The venue is a nice retreat right outside of Nairobi on the edge of the Rift Valley. There will be a bar, barbeque, games for kids and a recognition of notable local SOAS alumni.
Date: 26 June
Venue: Ngong, Nairobi
One to keep the weekend going just that little bit more…
Every Friday, we’ll be posting a piece on the growing Afri-love idea. Here’s the first installment. Happy weekends all!
I believe that when people look into themselves and accept, love and respect what they find there, they will unlock the abundant energy that creates opportunities for success. In all areas of their lives. When I look inside myself, I know that my passion – the thing that inspires and motivates me most – is Africa. It defines who I am. I embrace and express this appreciation at every opportunity. Doing so has taught me more about myself and made me acknowledge the power of my potential.
To all those residing in the UK, the place to be this weekend is at Liverpool’s Africa Oyé festival. The annual celebration of African music and culture kicks off on Saturday. With a line-up of musical acts from the continent and the diaspora, arts, crafts and refreshments, it’s sure to be two days of good vibrations and Afri-love.
And it’s free!
South African-born Bessie Head spent most of her writing life in exile in Botswana, eventually becoming a citizen. The perpetual outsider (Bessie was born of a wealthy white woman and black servant in a time where interracial relationships were illegal), her works often deal with the different psychological dimensions of identity. Among her novels are A Question of Power, The Collector of Treasures and Maru.
Solomon Tshekisho Plaatje was the first Secretary-General of the ANC and one of the first black South Africans to have a book published in English. This book was Mhudi, published in 1930, a magnificent piece of historical fiction chronicling the creation of nationhood in the south of Africa.
A member of the Drum boys, whose dictum was “live fast, die young and have a good-looking corpse,” Can Themba‘s writing graphically depicts urban life in 1950s South Africa. He explores conflicts between the modern urban setting and the rural traditional one as well as telling of the effect of Apartheid policy on the aspirations of young, hopeful, educated blacks. Requiem for Sophiatown and The Will to Die are among his works. (Can Themba’s Drum days must have inspired Janet Jackson’s “Got Til It’s Gone” video)
More literary highlights on Lonely Planet.
London’s calling from the 11th of June to the 11th of July. In celebration of the first World Cup on African soil, Rich Mix will be screening all the games and keeping the party going with 25 days and nights of live music, DJs, art, films and food. The Afro Cup Festival has an incredible line-up and the chapati image on the food page is seriously stirring my taste buds! Sure to be an experience filled with positive Afri-love vibrations.
(Oh yes, and entry is free!)