After a year of stunning achievements, Nigerian singer/songwriter Bez rocks the cover of our latest issue, joining a host of other inspirational, game-changing Africans in our first annual Applause 40 Under 40 list. Honoring innovators in fields as varied as media, fashion, entrepreneurship, and advocacy, this is an issue you'll want to hang on to for all of 2013.
But until the issue officially debuts at our African Diaspora Awards on December 8, here's a preview of the cover and graphic novel-themed editorial featuring Bez and conceived by photographer Remi Adetiba.
In her 30 years, she has accomplished more than most people would dream to accomplish in a lifetime. She saw a need in her home country and found a creative solution to tackle that problem- all done in style, if we might say. Yet, when you ask her about her accomplishments, Ms. Jones will tell you that she has barely scratched the surface.
This issue simply has something for everyone. In this issue we also introduce you to the fusion of African cultures with different cultural groups around the world. Whether it is in dance, fashion, visual art, or music, African culture continues to inspire artists from all walks of life. A picture is worth a thousand words and if Chester Higgins Jr. has anything to say, he has spoken in thousands of words of the beauty of Africa and its people. We also bring exciting giveaways from companies like RAIN, a company that has created a job market for many South Africans. We are also proud to be working with AMREF-African Medical and Research Foundation on their “Stand up for African Mothers” campaign. Please keep a look out for upcoming Applause Africa events benefing the campaign.
Also in the issue we featured great examples of individuals that have embraced Africa, at its best and at its worst. Saran Kaba Jones has taken on the task to introduce clean water initiatives in her native land in Liberia. Angelique Kidjo, a legend in her field, has continually promoted African music to the world, and embraced her identity as an African woman, who has a platform that could make a difference in many African women’s lives. Fashion houses like 54 Kingdoms, a Pan-African fashion house and Studio D’Maxsi are embracing the African cultural identity, challenging the world to view Africa in a new light.
In this issue, we sat down with Leymah Gbowee is the new face of peace and it is evident that many women in Africa look up to her and aspire for their daughters to be like her. Even still she acknowledges that continuous efforts need to be made through awareness creation, capacity enhancement and provision of a sustainable economic leverage. Gbowee states that these are necessities needed to combat the struggles women without empowerment face.
With much conviction Gbowee believes that before a man, or husband women should take control of their bodies. “Just as everyone wakes everyday and takes charge of their day, I feel a women should have the same right to their reproductive health. From an early age girls should be taught that just as the posses their brain so do they posses their body.”
As a feminist with whose radical approach is winning appraisal, it is certain that Gbowee will not slow down on her mission to empower women. Just as her father taught her never to foster the idea of a woman being the lesser gender, this activist continues to live by this principle. In her exit message she says: “For me, everyday is reinforced that if you’re a woman looking for a king, a Gandhi or a Mandela, you have missed a mark. You are your own king, your own Gandhi, your own Mandela. This is my message to the women of Africa and to the girls
Have you ever been called an AFRICAN BOOTY SCRATCHER? This will be a panel discussion featuring First Generation Diaspora Africans which will continue to challenge the single story we are told about each other as Africans, as African-Americans, Afro-Caribbeans, etc.
On a seemingly quiet and very beautiful Sunday evening, I sat at a table as a guest to Mark Henegan, the proprietor of Madiba Restaurant. Among my fellow guests were individuals from all walks of life, and the performer for the evening was Tony Cedras. But before discussing the amazing music i heard that evening, one has to stop and marvel at Madiba. It is described as a Shebeen, or as I am led to understand means a very informal dining space. And indeed, it is informal-that is before you enter the interior dining space and you’re a met with a chandelier made of Coke bottles (I secretly want to take that home with me). A couple of minutes after my arrival, Mark enters the restaurant and makes his round around the restaurant greeting his customers. And it occurs to me, everyone there is his guest and he treats them as such. He walks over to me, and after a minute or two, him and his staff makes me forget completely that I have a thesis waiting for me to polish, and a dozen or so projects. Completely relaxed with a family style dinner, I begin to engage my surroundings. Seating with me on the table are the organizers of the upcoming screening on Robert Mugabe at NYIT on May 17th , and off course a political discussion ensue. For an individual who has spent years on African politics and policies, I am intrigued by what Zimbabweans think of Mugabe. At the end, they have convinced me that I do need to attend the film screening, and see and participate in the discussion of “What happened to Mugabe”. Maybe I might be convinced to look at Mugabe on a different light, than the villain that he is often portrayed by those of us in politics.
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Beauty Of The Dark Continent.
Just like every single one of the four million people who were forced to leave their families, cattle, and burning villages behind, she walked for hundreds of miles into the great unknown after the outbreak of civil war in Sudan in 1985, not aware if she would ever return to the place she had always called home, Read More...
DR. OLAJIDE WILLIAMS 'THE HIP HOP DOC’
“Switch it up/Put some water in the cup,” the man standing onstage alongside old-school hip-hop legends Doug E. Fresh and Artie Green raps with the swagger of a new school artist. With his tie loosely draped across his chest, his top button undone, and Ray Ban-like glasses reminiscent of B.O.B’s, Read More...