UWC Africa Week 2017, which will run from Wednesday 19th July – Tuesday 25th July, is a student driven event. It hopes to ignite debate on perspectives about Africa with a view to complicate and contextualise Africa’s various understandings. It is a platform for participants to explore African societies and examine the salient issues impacting Africa, Africans and the African Diaspora.
UWC Waterford Kamhlaba, Swaziland
Wednesday 19th July – Tuesday 25th July
It is a shorthand for trajectories of time – back into which our histories stretch and our 55 countries disappear; where our thousands of present languages languages are spoken in earlier forms. ‘Africa’ includes the sharp and faint memory of where we walked some 30 000 years ago, and drew the earliest forms of permanent human art, invented religion, society, technology and human-beingness itself. Africa, as times and places, is where we continue to do this, even when newly loud voices say that is not or has never been the case. These voices, rising in the 19th century ‘Scramble for Africa’, fabricated a single and negative story about ‘Africa’ that echoes even in our time: Darkness, Failure, Inferiority, Stasis, Ignorance, Chaos, Hopelessness, Unhomeliness.
‘Unscrambling’ builds and resists against what the ‘Scramble for Africa’ destroyed and created for domination. This week reminds and showcases examples of continued African excellence: innovations in technology, economy, education, law and achievements in politics. All these alongside the negative events are used to support the colonial and pessimistic narrative of the dark or the hopeless continent. We recognize our challenges, real and at times dire, in their own nuanced contexts. We think about them and honour those who act to address them in thought, advocacy, and action. Unscrambling calls on us – communities, students, leaders, for intelligent and moral leadership – in small to the largest of scales.
Get in touch with us to find out more about UWC Africa Week