« Men are two dirty hands:
you need one to wash the other »
We didn’t blow any birthday candles out – we didn’t have time to! The 25th issue of Africultures was brought out urgently, like the rest, and here already is number 27! With few means, but great determination, we carry on the passionate adventure. Are we right to try to constitute a critical voice amidst the choruses of connivance, an independent voice in a stream of cooperation agreements, a demystifying voice against the straightjacket of prejudice? We are deeply moved and comforted by encouragements from all quarters. Thank you.
It’s true. Keeping a monthly journal with a fixed number of pages alive is no mean feat. The path we have chosen – to be both a non-hermetic, reflective journal, and an up-to-date critical magazine – is demanding in all respects. But two factors reported in this month’s « rebonds » section now confirm our choices.
The first is the emergence of African cultural networks. This means that an information circuit is possible – which is quite something, given the current absences. It will, everyday, enable the public to get to know artists and their works, the festivals and events, individuals’ developments and histories, enabling them, in short, to differentiate between cultures and countries, and to appreciate the stakes involved. We are happy to be their media relay. The success of our electronic newsletter, which, every Friday, transmits the coming week’s complete diary and the latest « grapevine » news all over the world, proves that, given the current absences, this information is vital.
The second is the explosion of the Internet. It is now easier and cheaper for information to circulate, irrespective of geographic barriers. Data bases are available not only to researchers and the cultural decision-makers, but also to the general public. Journalists have access to press reports and visual matter. We have lost no time in embracing this technology, and aim to make our web site a veritable tool for the discovery and recognition of African cultures, which is at the disposal of the already well-developed services. The challenge is to do so in unequivocal harmony with our African partners, without overstepping our role.
This Black Actors dossier yet again proves the underlying ignorance, the racist prejudices, the historical misunderstandings, in short, the importance of our work! For or against quotas? The presence of minorities in the diverse selection and programming committees would at least be a start. The issues at stake are huge: the recognition of multi-culturalism. That is what we are fighting for.
///Article N° : 5435