african colonies

washingtonpost.com
His Paula Deen takedown went viral. But this food scholar isn’t done yet.
Michael Twitty’s mission: To evangelize about the African roots of Southern food.

Wow this guy is amazing uhhhhhh uhhhhhh such awesome work

-blogger at Afroculinaria.com

“Twitty is deeply engrossed in both the African American and Jewish food traditions. “Blacks and Jews are the only peoples I know who use food to talk about their past while they eat it,” says Twitty, 38.”

“From Richmond it was a short jaunt to Colonial Williamsburg, where Twitty spent the week lecturing, conducting training sessions and cooking in period costume at three of the living history museum’s venues. In all his talks, Twitty emphasized the impact of chefs and cooks of African descent on shaping American and Southern cuisines in colonial times and after.”

“At a conference he met the scholar Robert Farris Thompson, author of “Flash of the Spirit,” a book about the influence of African religions on African American art that helped him see that “soul food” was, among other things, a spiritual term describing a mystical connection between humans and the animals and plants they eat.”

“He cooked and he gardened. He studied heirloom seed varieties, some that had been brought from Africa and some that had been carried from the New World to Africa and then, on slave ships, back to North America, among them okra, black-eyed peas, kidney and lima beans, Scotch bonnet peppers, peanuts, millet, sorghum, watermelon, yams and sesame. He called those seeds “the repositories of our history” and wrote about them in a monograph published by Landreth Seed in its 2009 catalogue.”

“Twitty’s embrace of all the various parts of himself — African, African American, European, black, white, gay, Jewish — sometimes raises hackles, as does his habit of speaking his mind. An article he wrote in the Guardian on July 4, 2015, suggesting that American barbecue “is as African as it is Native American and European, though enslaved Africans have largely been erased” from its story, elicited scorn and worse: Many commenters were outraged by his idea of barbecue as cultural appropriation.”

Queen Nzinga Mbande (1583-1663), sometimes referred to as Anna Nzinga, was ruler of the Ndongo and Matamba Kingdoms of the Mbundu people in what is now Angola.

As the favoured daughter of King Kiluanji of the Ndongo, Nzinga Mbande was brought up witnessing her father’s governance of the kingdom first-hand. He even took her with him when he went to war. Kiluanji made deals with the Portuguese who were expanding their slave trading operations in South West Africa, and this relationship was maintained when her brother Ngola Hari became king. However in 1617 the Portuguese Governor Correia de Sousa launched attacks against the Ndongo kingdom that captured thousands of Mbundu people.

In 1621 when the Portuguese invited the Ndongo king to take part in peace talks, he sent his sister Nzinga Mbande in his place. At her famous first meeting with De Sousa chairs were only provided for the Portuguese, and Mbande was expected to sit on the floor. Instead she commanded one of her servants to go down on all fours and act as her chair. During the negotiations Mbande walked a fine line between preventing the Portuguese from controlling the kingdom as they had done in Kongo, while keeping options open to trade for firearms to strengthen her armies. In this she was successful, although as a condition of the agreement she had to convert to Christianity and was baptised as Anna de Sousa, with the Governor becoming her Godfather.

In 1626 Mbande became Queen of the Ndongo following the death of her brother. Her reign began in peril as the Portuguese went back on their deal with her and declared war, as did other neighbouring tribes. Forced into retreat from her own lands, Mbande led her people south to the kingdom of Matamba, which she attacked, capturing Matamba’s Queen and routing her army. Mbande then installed herself as the new ruler of Matamba, from where she launched a prolonged campaign of guerrilla warfare against the Portuguese which would last for the next 30 years.

Mbande developed a legendary reputation as a warrior, although claims that that she took part in human sacrifice are likely the result of European propaganda and gossip. Accounts that she maintained a personal harem of more than 50 men are also unproven. What is known is that Mbande assembling a diverse army to oppose the Portuguese that included runaway slaves, defecting soldiers, and women. Exploiting European rivalries she made an alliance with the Dutch, which included acquiring her own personal bodyguard of 60 Dutch elite soldiers armed with rifles. Working with the Dutch, Mbande successfully defeated Portuguese armies in 1644, 1646, and 1647. However the Dutch were eventually pushed out of the region in 1648 and Mbanda was forced to carry on the fight alone. While she was never able to completely defeat them, she successfully resisted Portuguese invasion for decades.

Mbande continued personally leading her troops into battle until she was in her sixties, but the long war eventually wore both sides down. In 1657 she finally signed a peace treaty with Portugal. She then spent the rest of her life focused on rebuilding a nation which had been devastated by conflict and over-farming. She died of natural causes in 1663, aged 81. Today Nzinga Mbande is a symbol of Angolan independence, memorialised by numerous statues.

I do think it is important to note that 90% of Black and brown characters in comics were created by white people. Through the years white writers and writers of color have dealt with characters of color, giving them depth or fucking them up.

This being said, the interpretation by Black fans and fans of color are more important to me than the white creators. There is a deeper meaning behind a bullet proof Black man and an African nation untouched by colonialism, surpassing western nations at every single thing. Down to the hair they are drawn with to their features/skin tone, these things are important to how we consume these characters and approach them.

This is why it’s so upsetting to see our stories being told wrong or having characters say so obviously white opinions i.e. Miles denying his importance as a Black superhero. While Black people and comic readers come from all walks of life, have various opinions, and different understandings, we know when a Black character is authentic. We can see the importance where white readers or even the characters themselves don’t see.

I believe that this is due in part to the fact that we are given the bottom of the barrel representation and for them to work as something relatable to us, we analyze them in a completely different cultural context.

So yes your white faces can’t rule Wakanda because that defeats the point of it. Making Sam the Avengers’ sidekick/therapist is racist, even if the creators portray him as nothing more. Sidelining Claire in Dare Devil is important. Drawing Storm with euro typical features and light skin is important. The backlash against a Black Mary Jane or Asian Poison Ivy is important.

White fans can understand why comics and movies are so important, do an hour long videos dissecting a twenty page book, but can’t understand it in the context for Black fans and fans of color. It shows a total lack of empathy and it’s ironic that the nerd community that is so obsessed with how they were treated for being nerds turn to virulent racists.

This land belongs to the Indigenous people. This is a fact that the African People’s Socialist Party is clear on and expresses continuously.

What is evident here is that the construction of the pipeline is a reflection of settler colonialism. Still, the Indigenous people of this land have no self-determination and exist at the whim and mercy of the colonizer––foreigners.

The struggle against colonialism must be made. All attempts for the struggle to be co-opted by the white left and turned into an environmentalist struggle must be struggled against. We see plenty white activists, celebrities and politicians infiltrating the struggle, lamenting on how we need to save the Earth.

In reality, it is the system of parasitic capitalism, created and upheld by these same white people, which is responsible for the damage of our planet. Parasitic capitalism sacrifices the Earth’s natural resources and well-being of its inhabitants for the monetary gain of the white ruling class and capitalist corporations. We should not lose sight of this.

The African People’s Socialist Party, stands in solidarity with our Indigenous sisters and brothers. We, too, demand “No Dakota Access Pipeline”!

Smash colonialism

Smash Parasitic Capitalism

This land belongs to the Indigenous people!

—  Kalonda Mulamba, African People’s Socialist Party

I saw a poorly thought out Facebook post about Beyoncé “appropriating” Nigerian Yoruba culture and was glad to see other black folk check that shit. They talked about how people seem to forget that the African diaspora are still African. And when our ancestors were displaced all over, we took these religious and cultural practices with us. Yes, they changed due to proximity to white and indigenous people (for various reasons both good and evil), but these are still religions that are ours nonetheless. The Orishas traveled with us. We didn’t suddenly stop being African. Colonialism has convinced us of such nonsense.

7th of April 1994: The Rwandan genocide begins. 

In the early hours of the Morning of April the 7th, the Rwandan army, Police and Hutu militia forces began their genocidal purge of the Tutsi minority residing in Rwanda. The Genocide was to last until the 15th of July but during that time it is estimated between 500,000 and 1 million tutsi and moderate hutu had been systematically murdered

To give some context to why this atrocity happened. Rwanda has two types of people. Hutu and tutsi. The Tutsi Minority had ruled the country as a monarchy until 1884 when the German empire colonised it. The German settlers made a great distinction between the two classes, favouring the tutsi because of their lighter skin, natural tallness and their willingness to accept christianity. The Hutu where treated as a lower people, after ww1 Germany lost control of the colony and it was granted to Belgium, who continued the pro tutsi policy. The Belgians introduced identity cards to label the citizens of rwanda tutsi or hutu. Or a very small minority who made up 1% of the country called Twa. 

After ww2 Rwanda saw its transition from a belgian colony with a tutsi monarchy to a hutu controlled republic. Extremist Hutu began killing tutsi and the Twa where marginalised. Many fled to neighbouring countries. Tutsi’s from fought back from other countries, which in turn made the hutu government opress the tutsi’s still living in Rwanda. Juvénal Habyarimana took power in Rwanda in a coup in 1971, through use of propaganda the government made the hutu remember the past years of tutsi opression. The Hutu hated the tutsi. 

The Rwandan patriotic front (RPF) was a rebel group made up of tutsi refugees who invaded Rwanda in 1990 iniating a civil war. On the 6th of April 1994 president Habyarimana’s plane was shot down. The government blamed the RPF however evidence suggests extreme hutu’s shot the plane down to spark a genocide. 

The Killing began next morning. The police and the army killed and raped and burned tutsi settlements. Any moderate hutu’s were killed. The government encouraged the hutu majority to arm themselves with clubs, pitch forks, machetes and bats. Neighbours killed neighbours. The UN dispatched a peacekeeping force and France set up refugee camps and safe zones for displaced tutsi’s. However the French army had orignially backed the hutu government and helped train hutu militia. 

Despite the ongoing genocide the RPF won the war and set up a tutsi majority government lead by paul kagame. This caused 2 million hutus to flee into the democratic republic of Congo, which in turn started the congo wars. Reffered to as the “African world war”.