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Archive for the ‘media’ Category

Small steps or high hopes? Will a few high profile African women change the reality for millions of others?

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Joyce Banda. Photo by Chatham House, London

The World Economic Forum today published the 2012 Global Gender Gap Report. The report quantifies what most of us already anecdotally know: that in most parts of the world, it sucks to be a woman.

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Written by Eliza

November 6, 2012 at 5:05 pm

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Day in the media: Diane Abbott and distraction politics

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diane abbott. Photo: CC Alkan de Beaumont Chaglar

Just a short 24 hours after justice was finally served in the brutal racially motivated murder of Stephen Lawrence – some 19 years ago – another incidence of racism has caught the public’s attention and politicians are baying for blood.

But this time, we have a tweet by shadow health minister, Diane Abbott, in which she makes a generalisation about white people. In an open exchange on Twitter, Diane writes: “I understand the cultural point you are making. But you are playing into a ‘divide and rule’ agenda. White people love playing ‘divide & rule’ We should not play their game #tacticasoldascolonialism.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Eliza

January 5, 2012 at 9:06 pm

Day in the media: BBC’s Pandagate

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Another day, another Twitterstorm.

Today, the BBC started #pandagate with its female Faces of the year 2011 list, that names a woman who made the headlines for every month of the year, topping it off, in December with…wait for it…a panda.

The list is a motley crew of victims (American congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords for being shot in head or Nafissatou Diallo who accused the IMF’s former head and serial womaniser, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, of rape) or women whose crowning glory has been to be in some way associated with a wedding.

In a year like most of us have never seen where two African women won the Nobel Prize and countless others were involved in pro-democracy or pro-equality movements, the best the Beeb could find in November was a certain Corporal Kelsey de Santis, who made headlines for being taken to the Marin Corps ball in Virginia by Justin Timberlake. Big whoop. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Eliza

December 28, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Top 10 sources of news and comment on Africa in 2011

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Cape Coast Kids. cc Eliza Anyangwe

It is undeniable that the media is the mirror through which we look at ourselves and the lens through which we see the world around us. Whether it is broadcast, print or digital, the media is second only to first-hand experience, in shaping our world view.

Yet so much of the media is devoid of international reporting and that little that exists is often a vacuous repetition of tired stereotypes. The popularity of the New Yorker’s post on the top ten positive stories about Africa in 2011 confirms that there is plenty of appetite for something other than the Western media’s mantra of death, destitution and desperation in Africa.

So as 2011 makes way for 2012, I set myself the challenge of finding 10 media sources that have bucked these trends and pursued, to varying degrees, a more inclusive and balanced policy on reporting Africa. You will certainly think highly of others that haven’t made the list, so add to the comments those who’ve most impressed you with their coverage of Africa and developing world issues. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Eliza

December 18, 2011 at 3:11 pm

Open letter to Not on Our Watch: are you watching Ivory Coast?

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The celebrity as activist is a phenomenon that is here to stay.

A development campaign is hardly complete without some celebrity being given a guided tour through crowds of people, in far-flung places, whose lives have been devastated by acts of God or the cruelty of men.

And an entertainer’s portfolio is hardly complete without a humanitarian campaign. Celebrities seem to be lining up to get into bed with almost any NGO, for almost any cause, no matter how improbable the relationship. I doubt anybody would have guessed Ronan Keating was passionate about and well-versed in global agriculture issues – until of course the Boyzone singer, in his capacity as FAO goodwill ambassador, writes the forward for a UK Parliamentary Inquiry on Food Security. No, didn’t see that one coming either. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Eliza

March 25, 2011 at 8:23 pm

The mixed media message of Red Nose Day

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Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day is a UK institution.

It’s a day like no other when the whole nation gets together to do something funny for money and change countless lives in the process. It all culminates in a night of cracking TV on the BBC with some of the biggest names in comedy and entertainment.

While there is a verbal caveat that some of the money raised will also support projects in the UK, the highlights are always the tear-jerking accounts of the nation’s best-loved celebrities’ experiences, casting off their wealth and egos to ‘slum it’ – literally.

Very little is done to paint a balanced picture: one of self-determination, progress and dignity. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Eliza

March 18, 2011 at 1:39 pm