Tag Archives: Africa

DCA–>ATL->JNB

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I leave this afternoon for a unique trip and I’m SO excited!

I’ll get to Joburg just in time to check into my accommodations, freshen up, and get dressed for New Year’s Eve. For the first few nights in Johannesburg im staying in my hometown neighborhood of Maboneng at Curiocity Backpackers. Hopefully this will give me a chance to get over my jet lag, get a bit adjusted, and do some reading before Tuesday.

Tuesday is when the study abroad program starts. I’ll check into our hotel that morning, get settled for the week, and meet our guide for tea before heading to the airport and collecting the students. We have a jam-packed 14-day program in Johannesburg and Cape Town (don’t worry there will be plenty of posts!).

Once the study abroad program is complete I’m taking a long weekend in Zanzibar before heading back this side for spring semester. There will be much to write about over the next month…stay tuned!


6: Protest Action on University Campuses — A podcast about critical issues in higher education.

https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F264710913&visual=true&color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false

Dr Prishani Naidoo joins The Academic Citizen to discuss the politics of protest action within the context of university campuses in South Africa. The conversation centres around the university as a microcosm of society and the legitimacy of violent and non-violent forms of protest. The Academic Citizen also gains insight into students’ perspectives on protest […]

via 6: Protest Action on University Campuses — A podcast about critical issues in higher education.


If you care about wildlife, these are the wildlife attractions you should avoid

I have not been to a big cat park in South Africa where I can pet or take close-ups with the cubs or adult cats.  Its REALLY tempting! I mean, lion cubs! They are too cute and I would LOVE to hear those cats purr up close. But these venues are problematic. Each time I see one of those pictures pop up in my various newsfeeds I just see “dead cats walking”.  These big cat farms are breeding grounds for the canned “hunting” (calling what happens hunting is problematic) farms, where wealthy foreigners pay to shoot and import the trophy.

But I just can’t bring myself to go. I know in a case like this my active non-anticipation in this tourist activity will not change the industry. However, I can keep talking and writing about the ethical issues of these parks and tourist ventures. Hopefully, as the truth spreads, as it did with Blackfish, tourist money can go towards efforts that do provide actual conservation efforts to protect these amazing big cats and their habitat.

Source: If you care about wildlife, these are the wildlife attractions you should avoid


#FeesMustFall

South African students are protesting. They are fighting the rising cost of university fees, which are rising faster than financial aid and scholarships. Students across South Africa are protesting at their universities and shutting down the institutions today. I urge other students to follow #FeesMustFall no matter where you are in the world. Protesting students are being met with violence by police and students at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University have been injured. Students in Cape Town protesting at the parliament were also injured as they protested.


Seeing And Believing

What does your Africa look like?

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What we see should not be what we believe.

Hello Readers

Some of you might know that I live on the African continent. Those who need to refresh their memory on what the African continent looks like, please look below.
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It is said that the shape of the African continent can be found on the African elephants ear. I’ll leave that for you the readers to judge.

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I recently came across a video blog based on peoples opinions of South Africa. With the following pics I will show you some of their answers.

Our Roads

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Our Animals

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Our houses

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Our People

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As a South African I did not know how to respond to these opinions. If you the reader have agreed with these opinions, then please let me show you, my South Africa.

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Yes, we do have amazing wildlife but they are on Game ranchers, away from suburban areas.

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Everything…

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CEO Sleepout South Africa – A farce

Poverty porn or poverty tourism is one aspect of my time in South Africa that was difficult to understand. Before I go any further I will state that the United States also has issues with poverty porn, which plays out on television for millions of viewers on a number of “reality” shows. The US entertainment industry has exported this idea to the UK too. You’re welcome.  No, really-I’m sorry.

I took a couple of tour trips into townships, two of them were with my school group on a city tour. When the bus pulled into the township children and men (unemployment rate is 26%) would come toward the bus. Some of the people smiled, but many of them flipped us off and yelled obscenities at the bus. I couldn’t feel mad at them because almost felt like we shouldn’t be there. Yes, going through the township helped me visualize the conditions, but it just felt wrong. It felt like the residents were, yet again, being exploited without their consent for the gain of the country. The people looking on our bus with distain did not know that we were students eager to learn about their country and trying to do it with a sense of respect. I think what bothered me the most on the township tour was that the tour was not given by someone who lived in the township.  People deserve the right and ability to tell their own story. Especially, when it comes to people from the continent of Africa because a single African story has been so deeply woven into the fabric of the Western narrative that the majority of westerners do not realize what a fallacy it is.

Billed as a themed B&B where “you can experience staying in a Shanty within the safe environment of a private game reserve. This is the only Shanty Town in the world equipped with under-floor heating and wireless internet access! The Shanty Town is ideal for team building, braais, fancy theme parties and an experience of a lifetime.”

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This past week while parked at the robot, I saw two males walking towards the car in front of me. The driver handed each of the men a loaf of bread. They proceeded to cross the road, sit on the side and eat the bread. They looked most grateful and as I sat there in my car I felt the most horrible feeling of sadness and wishing I could help too. A few days later driving in the CBD I witnessed a man desperately trying to get every drop of food out of a small container while sitting on the side of the road with crutches.

Living in South Africa, these are the things we see on a daily basis. There are millions of homeless people who battle every day just to receive a meal to sustain them. This is their life, many being born and dying on the streets.

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Akon calls for Rebranding Africa

Al Jazeera interview with Akon, musician/activist, published on Jan. 24, 2015.


What comes to mind when you hear “Africa”?

Are you going to study abroad some where in Africa?  This might be a good video to show your friends and family when you break the news.  Over and over again students tell their families that they’re headed for a semester in South Africa or another African country and the questions start regarding safety, animals, or modernity. However, each student who travels to an African country has the chance to stop the single story being told of the African continent and her people.

Remember, if you are studying abroad, you are going there to learn and not save anyone.  Be open-minded. Be a student.


Ideas Are Scary

I’ve been on the receiving end of teachers or instructors who were scared of new ideas. They just didn’t know how to handle anyone who questioned their methodology. Since I had that experience the times that standout in my education were those moments when my instructor smiled and let me make an argument for my crazy idea. Those are the instructors I keep in mind when I think about being a professor because schools need more instructors who will welcome students’ ideas. Students take a risk when they approach an instructor. If an instructor smashes the student’s idea hater than welcoming it and helping the student channel & develop their idea into the best possible form for the class. I love this commercial. Hopefully, the message can resonate with people, not just for GE, but also other places where ideas scare us. As the commercial states “under the proper care, they [ideas] become something beautiful.”


7 Reasons Why You Should Travel Alone At Least Once In Your Life

I loved my weekend alone in Johannesburg. Its funny to say that I traveled alone because I never felt alone, not the whole time! I met an amazing South African artist on the plane, connected with a great group of people at my hostel, and toured the city and had lunch with a group of women from The Netherlands. I had lost my voice in the dry winter air and everyone was so kind to me. Traveling “alone” can be amazing!!!

Thought Catalog

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1. You will meet amazing people.

While traveling with friends or a significant other can be a lot of fun, traveling solo for a certain amount of time can prove to be one of the most rewarding things you’ll ever do because of the great people you’ll meet.

When we travel with friends or a partner, we tend to stick to that little group of familiar faces and even though you’ll meet new people, the dynamics and interactions won’t be as deep and fulfilling. While you’re on your own on the road, you’re much more eager to meet travel buddies, team up with other travelers and generally reach out more in order to socialize.

2. The overwhelming sense of absolute freedom.

When you travel on your own and you start meeting people and making awesome friends, you’ll probably team up with travel buddies and…

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