Author: Shazzy Kioko
Author: Shazzy Kioko
Author: Njuguna Xavier
often i have wished for Human speech…
Thee fares well, I can tell you’ve been swell
From girth on waist and wobbly gait, signs of a plenty slate
I too have tried, kitchens pried but should I say I’m good I would have lied
Fortunes have departed, deserted the Lives were once they imparted.
From slight of tongue, I tell of pang
By twitch of nose, hungers pinch void of pause
From idle chatter, of more grave matters
Tell I beg, for I’ve not fed and Tom is hosting some newlyweds. Continue reading One Mouse to Another | By @njugunas_son
There is a tail in each kink
There is toil in each coil
This hard hair holds tough pasts
My dark hands bound with chain
Sleek and dark with the dried blood
From those before me Continue reading Untitled* | Anonymous Contribution
When they tell you knowledge is power, they leave out the part where it is insomnia too. They tell you to learn but do not tell you that the more you learn, the more you want to learn. That the more you keep learning the more you keep questioning. The more you question, the less you sleep; not just because you have questions lingering in your mind that you have a thirst to find answers to, but also because you are having debates with voices in your head. You toss and turn a for a few minutes – even hours if you are persistent – trying to shut them all out so you can catch some sleep, before you eventually just give in to the light, borderline darkness, that keeps you awake and you start trying to find conclusions, which lead you to more questions.
If you are aware of the publicly unfolding events of Teebillz and Tiwa Savage’s marriage, that may have contributed to your clicking on this article. You may then be hoping to have sugar added to the already spilt tea because we are a fast food culture attracted by drama more than we are by substance. You will be disappointed to know that this article will address the patriarchy within most of the Afrikan societies when it comes to marriage.
I know, yet another article on patriarchy in less than a week. If you take issue with this, it is because you are a product of a society that has normalized patriarchy and/or misogyny and perpetuates it, whether consciously or otherwise. The issue therefore, is not that I, along with other women and men keep raising this issue, but that misogyny exists. With that settled, since you already have one foot in, you might as well take a seat and read on, after which you can leave me a comment on your disagreement; perhaps even help me see I have it all wrong yes?
By proximity, I know more black men than I do any other ethnicities. It follows that I have heard, through conversation, or read, via my social feeds, more reactions to Beyonce’s newly released visual album ‘Lemonade’ from black men around me, than those from other ethnicities. Many of these reactions have been dismissive and some have shown concern for Jay Z’s ego bruise – assuming the theme of infidelity is based off his and Beyonce’s marriage. How dare she publicly call out his cheating and assert her power? Again, we have all assumed she speaks from personal experience, and not from walking in other women’s shoes, including her mother’s because hey, the drama is juicier that way.
I never thought a day would come when I would write a lengthy article on Beyonce, let alone in appreciation of her work. Those who know me know I have been an avid critic of Beyonce over the years. She never quite fit my ideas of decency and modesty in how she chose to celebrate her body, and when she released ‘formation’ I considered her a fraud using the black struggle for gain. According to me, she had been silent for too long and that she was just now talking about the black experience did not sit well with me. Notice the number of ‘me’ in this paragraph?
In my final year of undergrad, I had a criminology presentation that was about 10-15% of my grade. I had done alright with the other %, so I had the dumb idea that 10-15% of my grade is no biggie, I would just chill and do it whenever. Naturally, procrastination took its course. I ended up preparing the presentation two hours before the lecture (bear in mind this is a presentation that had been assigned over a month and a half in advance). Writing that now I realise how stupid that was and in FINAL YEAR! Erm, yeah, kindly avoid using this information you are now privy to, to make an assumption of my whole attitude to education, I promise you, this was just an error in judgement.
Anyway, where was I? Aah yes, two hours before presentation time. When it was time to get to class, I literally went in with summary knowledge. Smart me of course – not a snarky comment, I was actually street smart for this one – decided I cannot be unprepared and look unprepared. That would be two levels of fuckery I could not afford. So I dressed up like I had bare time to look good since that would give the impression my work was long done, walked in there confidently, and presented my summary like I had dived in a whole ocean of information and re-emerged from under the waters a knowledge goddess. During the Q&A, I answered the questions presented like I knew what I was saying, giving the lecturer the “anymore questions for me to boss out? I can go all day” look.
At the end of my presentation, he says to me “this was a GREAT presentation. Well prepared and your arrangement of information was brilliant. VERY WELL DONE”. He wore that “this is impressive” look on his face and I wore that *cue in fake modest smile* “if only you knew” look on mine. I smiled, said “thank you”, pulled out my USB from the computer, and walked back to my seat with my head held up like “minor ting”.
Kenya’s first President Jomo Kenyatta once said, “when the missionaries arrived, we had the land and the missionaries had the Bible. They taught us how to pray with our eyes closed. When we opened them, they had the land, and we had the Bible”. I know this is ironic, because despite fighting colonialism on one hand, Kenyatta became a beneficiary of it on the other, resulting in his family owning over 500,000 acres of prime land across the country today. Nonetheless, I believe this does not take away from the validity of his statement.
When Afrikans talk of colonialism, religious colonialism is often left out of the conversation. I am not certain whether this aspect of colonialism is constantly overlooked because we are afraid to confront Christianity because it is a religion many Afrikans have, over the years, come to place great faith in, or if it is simply forgotten.
“The Lord’s Prayer” is a poem addressing the issue of religious colonialism and is part of an Afro-Oriented spoken word album I am currently putting together titled ‘Melanated Healing’.
THE DECOLONIZATION OF THE AFRIKAN MIND PROJECT
Mission, Vision & Value statements
Mission statement: To decolonize the Afrikan mind.
Vision Statement: To bring together as many young people from different Afrikan countries, backgrounds and cultures as possible, under a collective vision of empowering Afrika and the Afrikan people. Through monthly ‘Google Hangouts Live’ sessions with the Afrikan youth, The D.A.M Project seeks to reverse the effects of colonialism on the Afrikan mind, through conversation aimed at raising cultural awareness. I believe that without a cultural revolution (a resetting of the Afrikan mind), any other form of revolution, be it political or economic, remains retrogressive as we lack understanding of who we are, making it difficult, if not impossible to know where we are headed. It is only after finding ourselves, through our history, that we can truly address the predicaments Afrika faces today.
I shared this on my Facebook profile earlier and figured to post it here too.
A couple of people ask me why I spell Afrika with a ‘K’ and not a ‘C’, so in case you’ve been wondering, here’s a brief explanation.
The alphabets, as we know them, are not indigenous to Afrikan languages, however, most Afrikan languages spell Afrika with a K, for example Swahili. Afrika was initially spelt with a ‘K’ before European invasion of the continent. When the Europeans settled on the continent, the ‘K’ in many words was replaced by ‘C’, because phonetically it sounded so. Accra for example, was initially Akkra and Congo – Kongo.
Kenyan based Pan-Afrikan writers’ collective Jalada Africa last week published the short story, Ituĩka Rĩa Mũrũngarũ: Kana Kĩrĩa Gĩtũmaga Andũ Mathiĩ Marũngiĩ, by infamous Kenyan author Ngugi wa Thing’o in over 30 languages, namely; Kikuyu, Ahmharic, Dholuo, Kikamba, Lwisukha-Lwidakho, Ikinyarwada, Arabic, Luganda, Kiswahili, Afrikaans, Hausa, Meru, Lingala, IsiZulu, Igbo, Ibibio, Somali, isiNdebele, XiTsonga, Nandi, Rukiga, Lugbarati, Shona, Lubukusu, Kimaragoli, Giriama, Sheng, Ewe, Naija Languej, Marakwet plus French and English, making it the single most translated African short story. This is big, and it is not getting nearly half the attention it deserves. This article seeks to stress on the significance of this and why it is what every single Afrikan should be fussing about right now.