governance

Undefined

Perspectives #03/2017: The (Un-) Making of Icons in Africa

Which African leaders qualify as an icon? Perhaps this is always a controversial question, but it was much easier to answer, say, 25 years ago, when the public memories of Pan-Africanist champions such as Kwame Nkrumah and Julius Nyerere were still fresh, Nelson Mandela had just walked out of prison, and Robert Mugabe was a widely respected leader.

Digo women, patriarchy and elections in the Kenya south coast

Jacinta Victoria talks to Mariamu as she recounts how women like herself have progressively come to ‘have a say’ in Msambweni’s elections, a context where matrilineal organization has historically transformed, while at the same time provides potential space for women to pursue authority over particular social, economic and political relations.

“During elections, they do not refuse that we exist.”

What do Borana women in Mathare think about elections and mainstream political processes? What spaces do they use to intervene in both constituency-based and national politics, if at all? How do their situated and connected experiences of poverty, patriarchy and ethnicity impact their political practices?

Perspectives #01/2017: South Africa: Emerging Power or Fading Star?

Informed by the discussions at an international conference jointly organised by the German Development Institute, the Heinrich Böll Foundation and Stanford University on “Emerging Power or Fading Star? South Africa’s Role on the Continent and Beyond”, held 12–14 July 2016 in Cape Town, the articles gathered in this edition of Perspectives shed light on some of the nuances and challenges that define South Africa’s place in the world today.

The Walls We Can’t See

Actual transformation of gender relations is painfully slow. Women in Kenya continue to suffer the brunt of poverty, illiteracy and exclusion from decision making. And men’s voices are largely missing from the equality dialogue. There seems to be political reluctance and resistance to reforming the system of governance in order to increase representation of women in public life.

Perspectives #02/2016: Laughing Out Loud - The Politics of Satire in Africa

When you write about Africa, make sure to always include sad and starving characters, advises Kenyan author Binyavanga Wainana in his famously ironic essay “How to write about Africa”, which takes aim at Western prejudices. In the same way that everyday laughter has been excluded from all-too-familiar depictions of the continent, African humour and satire as a form of social and political engagement remains underexplored.

Civil Society Under Pressure

Shrinking – closing – no space: Governments across all continents villainize civil society actors. Where does their sense of threat emanate from?

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