Tag Archives: History

Europe and America’s ‘master narratives’ of Africa

G. Pascal Zachary in Fanzine: The master narratives about Africa are inevitably political; art about Africa and Africans, especially art created by non-Africans, inevitably becomes intertwined with the historical use and abuse of the African imaginary. The political entanglements of literary artists engaged with African affairs are complicated by the emergence of a new humanitarianism,… Read More »

Insights from an ethnography of the American housing market

In her latest column, Gillian Tett draws attention to the research of Anne Jefferson, an anthropologist who is studying how mortgage foreclosures are unfolding in the United States. This caught my attention: In the past century, American culture has developed a well-entrenched, commonly shared national narrative to explain and justify success – the myth of… Read More »

Friday Links #45 – On Yar’Adua’s death

Image via Wikipedia 1. Akin pulls out tissues for President Yar’Adua 2. Goodluck Jonathan makes his first address as president to the country (Video) 3. Reuters says Yar’Adua death leaves succession wide open 4. Next gives details of the burial 5. Discussions and speculations about who will become the new vice president 6. Is it… Read More »

Achebe writes a book on the Nigerian civil war

I just read this on the Nigerian Village Square: The literary world is abuzz with the news that Achebe in 2010, on the fiftieth anniversary of Nigeria’s independence, and the fortieth anniversary of the end of the Biafran war; is working on a major opus – Reflections on the Nigerian Civil War 1967-1970. It will… Read More »

Blacks in Germany

Yesterday I read a journal article on the hypersexualisation of blacks and the redefinition of citizenship in Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall. In plain English, German women saw black men as exotic consumables – blacks here meaning both Africans and African American GIs. But the experiences in both cases are radically different.… Read More »

On methodological individualism

Eamonn Butler, director of the Adam Smith Institute is getting worried about methodological individualism: I’m getting worried about methodological individualism. Yes, I know that ‘society’ has no life or will or organizing mind of its own, as Marx seemed to assume, and that it is just the aggregation of individuals’ decisions and actions. I know… Read More »

On Corporate Greed

Earlier today I drew attention to the announcement of the ASA Globalog series on the financial crisis. The first post in the series is already up. Alexander F. Robertson of Edinburgh University writes about Corporate Greed: The medieval burghers sought to dodge accusations of greed by political bluster or conspicuous acts of charity, but nothing… Read More »