DYNAMIC AFRICA

Set up in 2010, Dynamic Africa is a rich content-driven creative space with a Pan-African outlook established as an expressive platform for African experiences, African culture and African stories.


Dynamic Africa is a diverse multimedia platform, which curates global ideas, memes, attitudes and other phenomena that shape popular culture, with both a local and global African perspective.




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FEMEN Egyptian Activist Defaces ISIS Flag in Protest.

In collaboration with controversial radical feminist organization FEMEN, Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, an Egyptian blogger, internet activist and women’s rights advocate, has released a photo of herself menstruating on the official Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) flag.

In the photo, Elmahdy squats nude facing the camera as she defaces the ISIS flag and another woman in a similar position, who is partially clothed and seems to be wearing a hijab, defecates on it. Both women  have the letters “IS-IS” painted on their bodies, as well as the official FEMEN logo is painted on the back of the woman throwing her middle finger up. The photo was said to have been posted on Elmahdy’s Facebook account last week Saturday.

Elmahdy has not specified her intentions surrounding this photo but a FEMEN founder Inna Shevchenko has confirmed that the image was made in a response to the alleged murder of US journalist James Foley. A video was recently released that shows the beheading of Foley by a member of ISIS, although the authenticity of it has been questioned. In an interview with VICE, Shevchenko said:

We did this action in the format of photo message as a reply to latest Islamic State video message showing the execution of the journalist [James Foley]. With our photo message we propose our own “way of execution” of Islamic State ideas. Our caption to the photo reads: “Animals, our execution of your ideas looks like that! Watch it well! We don’t demand ransoms, we don’t threaten you with new killings, we just SHIT ON YOU, ISIS!”

Shevchenko also claimed that 23-year-old Elmahdy, who is no stranger to controversial and what some deem provocative forms of activism, has been involve with FEMEN since 2012. The year before, Elmahdy posted a nude photograph of herself on her blog in protest and opposition of Egypt’s conservative Muslim culture. Aside from the outrage she sparked, Elmahdy began to receive a string of rape and death threats after following this, some of which she made available on her blog. In March this year, Elmahdy joined women from Tunisia and Iran to protest outside the Louvre in Paris on International Women’s Day.

Her blog also contains posts such as this photograph of her white boyfriend as ‘Buddha’, kissing the same person in show of her Arab neighbours as a form of protest because he is “non-Arab and non-Muslim”, and this topless protest she participated in at a Mosque in Sweden where she now resides after seeking asylum.

Formed in Ukraine in 2008, FEMEN have been no strangers to controversy with their fiery brand of protest that usually involves nudity, and the occasional sacrilegious antic. But it seems like these very anti-religious actions are not simply about addressing systems that oppress women. Fellow African activist Amina Sboui, a Tunisian who made headlines after posting topless photos of her self online, quit the organization citing Islamaphobia. Elmahdy posted a video of Sboui on her blog earlier this year.

View the NSFW image.

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Dynamic Africa Global Events Listing: Music.

Music events happening all around the world!

In The Woods Festival

An independent music festival featuring some of the best up-and-coming artists in the UK. This year’s line up includes Laura Marling, Nao, Years & Years and Trudie Dawn Smith

August 29th - 30th
A secret location only disclosed to ticket holders, Kent

End Of The Road Festival

Highlighted acts we’d be excited for include Benjamin Clementine, Cold Specks and Tinariwen.

August 29th - 31st
Larmer Tree Gardens,

Salif Keita Acoustic Tour

Malian music legend Salif Keita will be embarking on a special acoustic of the United States that kicks off on August 30th at Chicago’s Africa Festival. See all the dates and venues here.

August 30th - September 21st
Various venues, USA

Fool’s Gold Presents: Day Off ‘14

Danny Brown, French Montana, ARAABMUZIK and more make up the line up for this Labor Day concert hosted by Fool’s Gold Recs.

September 1st
50 Kent, New York (Brooklyn)

BESTIVAL

Outkast, Busta Rhymes, Candi Staton, SBTRKT, Laura Mvula, MNEK, and many, many more.

September 4th - 7th
Robin Hill Country Park near Newport, Isle of Wight.

Mulatu Astatke at the Royal Festival Hall

An evening of the finest in Ethiopian jazz from the master of the genre himself. 

September 13th
Southbank Centre, London

Luke James at SOB’s

Don’t miss out on a chance to see the incredibly talented Luke James performing live in New York.

September 23rd
SOBs, New York

TribeOne Dinkoeng

From September 26th-28th, Africa’s Biggest Music Festival is going to take place in the town of Cullinan 30 km east of Pretoria in Gauteng Province. Get to see African and international acts, Fally Ipupa, Tiwa Savage, Khuli Chana, Wizkid and AKA, to Nicki Minaj, Kid Ink, and J. Cole.

September 26th - 28th
Cullinan, Gauteng

Rocking the Daisies

One of South Africa’s premiere music festivals, Rocking the Daisies is the unofficial official event of the summer. With headlining artists such as MGMT, the Rudimentals, Beatenberg, The Presets, Arno Carstens, and Taxi Violence, Rocking the Daisies this year boasts a number of stages with bands and artists from South Africa and the rest of the world.

October 2nd - 5th
Cloof Wine Estate, Darling

Deep in the Woods Music Festival

South Africa’s premiere deep house music festival is currently in its second year. Catch the likes of Craig Massiv, House Knights, Electronic Mafia and Ricardo Da Costa all in one place.

Meyers Farm, Alberton
October 4th - 5th

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Ni Nyampinga Brand Representatives interview Ms. Geraldine Fraser- Moleketi of AfDB.

The girls at Girl Hub Rwanda have been doing some amazing things - from publishing magazines to educate girls around the country, to providing training for young role models in communities across Rwanda.

On May 23rd, the Ni Nyampinga girls attended the one of the sessions titled “Gender Dividend: The economic benefits of investing in women”, as part of the African Development Bank Annual Meetings that took place in Kigali, Rwanda.

After the event, they interviewed Ms. Geraldine Fraser- Moleketi, former Director at UNDP and currently the Special Envoy for Gender at the African Development Bank. Ms. Fraser-Moleketi was interviewed on her role as an envoy and her hopes for women across the African continent.

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NEW MUSIC: P.H.fat ft JungFreud - “Lights Out”.

Next generation South African duo P.H.fat team up with arguably one of South Africa’s best lyricists JungFreud AKA Nonku Phiri to make one of the best electronic hip-hop tracks of the year.

As for the video? Be prepared to see a bunch of girls breaking a whole bunch of things.

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Style Icon: Mafikizolo’s Nhlanhla Nciza.

I just can’t let the month of August - Women’s Month in South Africa - go by without dedicating a few posts to my favourite women of Mzansi.

After a year of some serious hit-making with fellow artist Theo Kgosinkwe under the moniker ‘Mafikizolo’, in what I believe to me one of the best musical comebacks of all time, singer, songwriter, wife, mother and one half of one of the continent’s most popular groups, Nhlanlha Nciza is also a certified style icon. To call her any less would, at the very least, be an understatement.

Much like the genre of music Mafikizolo makes, Nciza’s style is a unique blend of various traditional African influences mixed with bits of contemporary African and Western fashions.

Although the band have always had an air of glamour and sophistication about them dating as far back as their Kwela, Van Toeka Af and Sibongiledays, where they channeled Sophiatown and took inspiration from other 20th century fashions, Nciza’s style has never been so bold, with her adoption of beautifully loud colours, and so distinctly representative of parts of the African continent - whether she’s wearing a gele, ankara styles common in West and Central African countries, jewelry inspired by East or Southern African cultures, silhouettes, prints, patterns and textiles from all over Africa. Not to mention how consistent her looks have been in all of their recent music videos, live performances and red carpet appearances.

But the best thing about Nhlanhla Nciza’s style has to be that, aside from looking flawless all the time, no one else can pull off what she does in the way that she does it.

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Consider the history of borders. Starting with the Berlin Conference of 1884 when seven European countries carved out their stakes on the continent, Africa was gradually broken down into an illogical clutter of nation-states. The borders of these states had no regard for historical groupings and identities, and shifted depending on what was most politically and economically expedient for the colonising country. At different points during the first half of the century, for example, Burkina Faso was part of Côte d’Ivoire, Niger, Mali and Senegal, before eventually coagulating as the Republic of Upper Volta.

In the early 1960s, as more African states gained “independence” and moved towards establishment of the Organisation of African Unity, border blues drove one of the earliest rifts in continental politics. The “Casablanca group” of states led by Kwame Nkrumah advocated a radical approach to African unification, while the “Monrovia group” led by Leopold Senghor called for a more conservative approach, one that held the borders of nation-states in higher esteem.

The Monrovia group won, and one of the first resolutions of the OAU was to endorse colonial borders. Today, there are only a few African countries – Comoros, Madagascar, Mozambique, Rwanda and Seychelles – that allow all Africans either to enter without visas or to obtain visas upon arrival. For the rest, fellow Africans have to jump through hoops whose variations in complexity often reflect larger political dynamics. It seems that what has infiltrated our psyche even deeper than colonial geography is the spirit that inspired the origin of borders: perceptions of superiority and inferiority, the violence of competition for resources, selective openness determined by levels of perceived threat and historical animosity. And questions of historical clarity are chronically present.

Where did the vision of division come from? How does it stay alive? Who teaches you to hate your neighbour? Official classifications along invisible lines were both symptoms and tools of oppression throughout the 20th century. In apartheid South Africa, pass books determined where and when Africans had the right to exist in their own land. In Rwanda, Belgium introduced identity documents with “ethnic” classifications, to nurture divisions in the incubator of rigid bureaucracy. Across the continent, people put arbitrary colonial divisions on paper and called them passports.

Whether immigrating, emigrating or just passing through, Africans suffer among the greatest indignities of cross-border travel, abroad and on the continent. Paula Akugizibwe recounts how the hand-me-down tools of divide and rule perpetuate the abuse.

NEW MUSIC: Niyola ft Banky W - “Love to Love You”.

Nigerian R&B crooner Banky W features on this steamy new track and video for fellow artist Niyola’s hot new single Love to Love You.

Gonna be bumpin’ this track for the next few days!

Kenyan Women Dominate 3000m Women’s Steeplechase Final and 10, 000m Race at Commonwealth Games.

It was a brilliant day for Kenyan athletics as the east African nation took home all three medals in the 3000m Women’s Steeplechase final at the current Games in Glasgow.

Coming in first at a time of 9:30.96 was runner Purity Cherotich Kirui, followed by fellow Kenyans Milcah Chemos Cheywa at 9:31.30 and
Joan Kipkemoi 9:33.34.

This win comes a day after another Kenyan clean sweep as Joyce Chepkirui led a Kenyan one, two, three in the Women’s gruelling 10,000m final, followed by Florence Kiplagat and Emily Chebet.

On day 10 of the 11 day event, Kenya is one of three African countries currently in the top ten of the overall medal standings chart.

With a total of 19 medals - 7 of them gold, Kenya sits in ninth position in-between South Africa and Nigeria.

Kenya have also won the Men’s 5000m, Women’s 800m, Women’s Marathon, Women’s 1500m, and the Men’s 3000m Steeplechase.

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Gold For Nigeria As Ese Brume Wins Commonwealth Games Women’s Long Jump.

Two celebrations were had at the Nigerian camp in Glasgow this past week as both Blessing Okagbare and Ese Brume won gold on the very same day.

Brume, who cites fellow long jumper Okagbare as her sports hero, cleared a height of 6.56m to win Nigeria’s second medal of the night.

Okagbare would have participated in this event but it clashed with her 200m race.

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Botswana’s Nijel Amos Wins Gold in Men’s 800m Final at Commonwealth Games.

Botswana claimed its first medal at this year’s Commonwealth Games after long-distance runner Nijel Amos finished ahead of Olympic champion David Rudisha of Kenya in the Men’s 800m final.

20-year-old Amos, who finished second to Rudisha at the London 2012 Olympic Games, clocked in at a time of 1:45.18 ahead of Rudisha’s 1:45.48.

South African Andre Oliever, Amos’ training partner, took home the bronze medal to make an all-African 1-2-3 finish in the race.

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NEW MUSIC: Awilo Longomba - Bundelele.

The man who brought us one of the continent’s most-loved Soukous songs is back! Whilst the single was released a few months earlier, Longomba’s finally dropped the offiicial music video for his track Bundelele (meaning ‘dance’).

Staying true to the song’s title, the rythmic and pulsating video celebrates various forms of dance and features choreography from the highly talented Nigerian dancer and member of CEO dancers Ezinne Asinugo.

If Asinugo looks familiar, that’s because you may have seen her in this video as well as the most recent music video from Fuse ODG featuring Sea Paul.

NEW MUSIC: Zaki Ibrahim - Draw the Line.

The opening song on South African-Canadian singer Zaki Ibrahim's 2012 release Every Oppositefinally gets a music video.

Filmed in a coloured neighborhood in the Cape Flats area of Cape Town, the video follows a day in the life of a young girl in an area and community that was and still is marred by the harsh racial and social policies of apartheid, but is also rich in culture and history. The video captures a myriad of emotions and paints a portrait of a girl caught between two worlds - that of her immediate surroundings, and that of her imagination.

Ibrahim was born in Canada to a South African father and mother from the UK. Her father, Zane Ibrahim, was a pioneering radio broadcaster in South Africa and was one of the founders of Bush Radio, an influential community station birthed by anti-apartheid activists and began as an illegal pirate radio station in 1993.

A multicultural individual, Ibrahim’s upbringing was one of a global citizen having lived in Canada, South Africa, the UK, France and Lebanon, but is currently based in Cape Town.

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South Africa Ranks Highest in Gold Medals amongst African Nations at Commonwealth Games.*

It’s day 6 of the XX Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland, and South Africa have fast edged their way to fourth position on the medals table with a total of 24 medals - 9 gold, 7 silver and 8 bronze.

Two of those gold medals were won by swimmer Chad le Clos who finished first place in both the 200m and 100m Men’s Butterfly races, setting two Commonwealth records in each. Clos has a total of five Glasgow Commonwealth medals: a silver for the Men’s 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay, and a bronze for the Men’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay and Men’s 50m Butterfly.

Fellow swimmer Cameron van der Burgh managed to win the Men’s 50m Breastroke winning gold and setting a new Commonwealth record in that race. Der Burgh won silver in the Men’s 100m Breaststroke behind Englishman Adam Peaty.

After beating New Zealand in the finals, the South African Rugby Sevens team won gold over the weekend making history as the first team ever to beat the Kiwis since the sport was introduced at the Commonwealth Games.

South Africa’s first gold medal was won in the Lawn Bowls after their mixed team beat the host nation 14-10 in the finals.

More Lawn Bowls victory came in the form of Prince Neluonde, Petrus Breitenbach, and Bobby Donnelly winning the Men’s Triples Gold Medal Match.

Paralympic sprinter Fanie van der Merwe won gold in the Men’s 100m T37 Final, and wrapping South Africa’s gold medalists (so far) is Zack Piontek who took home the judo Men’s -90kg Final first place title.

*South Africa has the most number of athletes of any African country.

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Movie Mondays: “Burning An Illusion” - Dir. Menelik Shabazz (1981).

Pat is a single woman, employed, financially independent, carefree and living in her own flat in London, until she meets suave and smooth talking Del. The two start dating and it isn’t long before Del moves in with Pat.

At first, things seem rosy between the them, that is, until Del quits (or loses) his job. As newly unemployed Del becomes more complacent with his situation, fully relying and taking advantage of the care that Pat and her job provide for him, their relationship takes a quick downward spiral and it isn’t long before things heatedly escalate.

Burning An Illusion is a powerful and important film for so many reasons. Not only does it feature a black woman as the central character, Pat - played by Cassie McFarlane - is a woman with complexities that defy stereotypes of black women throughout the history of Western cinema. She’s both strong and sensitive, defiant and desperate, lovestruck and lonely.

The film also tackles a number of issues related to gender roles and expectations within the Afro-Caribbean British community, black consciousness, race, class and other socio-economic factors that personally affect the film’s many characters.

In making this film writer and director Menelik Shabazz, born in Barbados, became the second black filmmaker to produce a feature film in Britain. Shabazz is also the founder of the BFM (Black Filmmakers) Film Festival in England.

The film won the Grand Prix at the Amiens International Film Festival in France, and  actress Cassie McFarlane won the Evening Standard Award for “Most Promising New Actress”.

Burning an Illusion and director Menelik Shabazz were honoured with a Screen Nation Classic Film Award in October 2011.

The relationship between Pat and Del at times reminded me of the couple in Nothing But A Man.

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Current Commonwealth Games Standings of African Teams.

The 20th Commonwealth Games officially kicked off four days ago in host city Glasgow, Scotland.

Africa is represented by 18 different countries namely Botswana, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. The Gambia withdrew from the Games in October 2013.

The 11-day event, ending on August 3rd, brings together a little under 5,000 athletes from 71 different countries and territories, competing in a series of 17 different sports and will see a total of 1,385 medals won.

In current medal standings, South Africa ranks highest amongst African nations and is the only African country in the top 10 (at position six) with a total of 14 wins so far - three gold, five silver and six bronze. Nigeria, at 11th place overall, just misses the top 10 with a total of four medals - one gold, two silver and one bronze.

The next ranking African country is Cameroon at 13th place overall - one silver and one bronze. Ghana, Mauritius and Zambia are tied for 20th place overall on the medals table, each with one bronze medal.

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