New African Review - February-March 2013 issue

African Update – 05/04/13

We at Humanitas Afrika continue to thank you, our supporters, for your interest in our work and activities, in Africa and its people, on the continent and in Diaspora.

For several years, we have been doing a brief review of New African, a monthly pan-African magazine, in which we have reviewed a selected number of articles, usually the cover story and one or a few others. There are months when we have failed to run the review or released it late, but you have remained with us. We sincerely remain grateful for finding time to look at our review of New African over the years, and for some of you the magazine itself, a copy of which we always maintain in our office.

In this review, we take a quick look yet again at the overall structure of New African, so that the bigger picture may not be lost to us, and to you our ardent readers and supporters, whom we consider very important to us.

The Letters section open up the pages, covers a selection of views from New African’s readers, usually in reaction to past articles – probing, provocative and reflective. In this review we reproduce, below, a letter published in the February 2013 issue, from a reader of the New African, who raises questions that provoke more soul searching than immediate answers.

Baffour’s Beefs is more than a column – inquisitive, investigative, searching, and confronting even to some measure a satire.

The cover story is always the thrust of the magazine, the stories range in themes, points of origin, and perspectives. Be they historical, economic, political or social they are matter – of – fact pieces. For example:

In the cover story of New African February 2013 issue, Our Men at the UN, Celhia de Lavarene wrote on his findings from an investigation of the UN. His assignment had been to investigate the African influence at the UN and what weight is given to African ambassadors’ contributions or participation in decision-making. He noted that at a time when there have been significant changes at the UN, ‘there are still lingering issues with regard to Africa’. New African observed that it still defeats logic, to cite as an example, that “a continent with 54 UN member countries still does not have a permanent seat on the Security Council.” While acknowledging that Africa now has more impact on decision making at the UN that it had twenty years ago, it nevertheless, reported that it is very clear that in a number of areas such as economics the voice of Africa is not strong enough to be heard by the major powers. The story raised and dealt with a number of questions: What are the challenges that African ambassadors at the UN have to deal with? How well do they handle them? What resources do they have at their disposal as they carry out their duties? Are the resources at their disposal sufficient? Do the African ambassadors feel that they are treated as equals by other ambassadors, say from the developed world?

The Feature section usually captures stories from different spheres in particular African countries. Often it is accompanied by a Special Feature section, which covers unique stories – sometimes country reports, or special analysis of political, economic or social issues.

New African Market is an important section that specifically tries to bring out the African market at the country, regional and at times continental level to the rest of the world. For investors and readers interested in emerging markets, this is an informative business section.

Reflections/ Under the Neem Tree/ Lest we forget/ Back to the future form New African’s equivalents to columns/ blogs that ponder, from a strictly personal point of view, on a variety of issues – they are equally awakening, informative and provocative, or simply recourse to the past. After all, what worth does life without reflection have ?

The Arts pages feature book reviews, African artists or artists of African origin and their work in Africa, but especially on the global scene, among others. Diaspora is a section devoted to stories about or from Africans – their experiences, successes or struggles away from continental Africa.

From time to time New African runs an inside magazine, not really a pull out, but a “small magazine” embedded within its pages. Not long ago there was New African Woman, which has eventually stood up on its own, as a quarterly publication. Then there is New African Football, which comes and goes following key football tournaments, particularly the African Cup of Nations.

In the February 2013 issue of New African, New African Football wrote extensively on how dirty money is corrupting the continental game (football in Africa). Football in Africa has not been spared by the just revealed worldwide match-fixing scandal.

And now, to wrap up, here we reproduce the reader’s letter, for it carries the weight of strife of the African people. What is your take? Do you think the questions are relevant and in context or are they misplaced?

The reader, Arthur Cromwell of Toronto Canada, wrote:

Please permit me space to ask a few questions of Africa and Africans. Hopefully, New African’s readers will respond to these questions that must be addressed if Africa is to unite and become an independent and prosperous place for its people to live.

  • How can your people eat well if someone else feeds them?
  • How can you become a well-educated African when you are taught in a foreign language and with a foreign curriculum?
  • How can you become wealth when you don’t pull your resources and someone else controls your money flows?
  • How can you conceal the extent of your resources when others survey, catalogue, and conduct an inventory of your assets?
  • How can you maintain and develop African cultural values when you allow foreign influences to take over?
  • How can you truly be African when you continue to fashion your societies on foreign ideologies and dogma?
  • How can you truly develop an African continent when you show no confidence in the abilities of your graduates, when you continue to import outsiders to design, plan, mine, construct, repair, guide, process, engineer and process the continents riches?


Compiled by Swegenyi Shivairo for Humanitas Afrika

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A collection of recipes by Nelson Mandela's personal chef, this book contains the food served to visiting heads of state, celebrities, politicians for more than 20 years. Featuring some of the favourite former South African president's favourite meals including samp and beans, farm chicken, tripe, this book also features paella, peri-peri chicken, prawn curry, and myriad of other delights. With simple, delicious and nourishing recipes, it will interest those who wish to prepare meals that are both elegant and healthy.More

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New titles in our library 12/2016

Our library has aquired a number of new and interesting books. Here is the list of the latest titles.

  • Blood Brothers: The Fatal Friendship Between Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X by Randy Roberts and Johnny Smith
  • Fashion Cities Africa by Hannah Azieb Pool
  • Frantz Fanon: Toward a Revolutionary Humanismby Christopher Lee
  • Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty by Robinson, James A., Acemoglu, Daron
  • Shakespeare in Swahililand: Adventures With the Ever-Living Poet by Edward Wilson-Lee
  • A History of Modern Africa: 1800 to the Present by Richard J. Reid
  • Authentically African: Arts and the Transnational Politics of Congolese Culture by Sarah Van Beurden
  • Children in Slavery through the Ages by by Gwyn CampbellSuzanne MiersJoseph C. Miller
  • Global Health in Africa: Historical Perspectives on Disease Control by Tamara Giles-Vernick
  • Rumba on the River: A History of the Popular Music of the Two Congos by Gary  Stewart
  • Women and Slavery, Vol. 1: Africa, the Indian Ocean World, and the Medieval North Atlantic by Gwyn Campbell
  • Women and Slavery, Vol. 2: The Modern Atlantic by Gwyn Campbell
  • Cahier d'un Retour Au Pays Natal by Aimé Cesaire
  • Healing Traditions: African Medicine, Cultural Exchange and Competition in South Africa, 1820-1948 by Karen Elizabeth  Flint
  • Global Education Policy and International Development: New Agendas, Issues and Policies by Antoni Verger
  • Black Skin, White Coats: Nigerian Psychiatrists, Decolonization, and the Globalization of Psychiatry by Matthew M. Heaton

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