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Culture in Africa’s New Liberation Struggle

The [colonised] people are only able to create and develop the liberation movement because they keep their culture alive despite the continually organised repression of their cultural life, continuing to resist culturally, even when their political and military resistance is destroyed. It is cultural resistance which at any given moment can take on new forms – political, economic, military – to fight foreign domination.” ~ Amilcar Cabral

The African Union (AU) set a very ambitious theme for 2021: “The Arts, Culture and Heritage: Levers for Building the Africa We Want.” If one did not know any better, they would be excited at such a bold, evocative and necessary theme being integrated into AU’s programme for the year. For the ingenous, we should not be talking about “building the Africa we want” nearly 65 years after the first independence moment in Africa—South of the Sahara. Instead, we should be furiously interrogating why, so many years later, the Africa we wanted at independence has not fully come into being.


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