Music and dance in Latin America has much of what is African. An example: the Tango.
In a country where an overwhelming majority identifies as white, and many say you have to cross the river into Uruguay to witness the influences of those from Africa, historians argue the Black minority played a major role in tango’s development during the 19th and 20th centuries.
Nigeria said on Friday it had indefinitely suspended Twitter’s activities, two days after the social media giant removed a post from President Muhammadu Buhari that threatened to punish regional secessionists.
LeBron James is teaming up with Ghanaian-born designer Mimi Plange for a four-part LeBron 18 Low collection that celebrates diversity and a sense of community. The series of colorways collections is the second collaboration between the NBA star and a female designer. It is the first-time-ever Plange is designing sneakers.
Plange is a household name in the fashion industry and most notably known for her designs worn by former first lady Michelle Obama, Rihanna, and Gabrielle Union.
“We are so honored to have created ‘Higher Learning,’ our first sneaker design in collaboration with LeBron James and Nike,” Plange announced on Instagram. “We are beyond excited and thankful to have had this opportunity to continue to share inspirational stories with the world.”
She added that the latest design was inspired by James and varsity style.
“There is nothing more empowering and enlightening than education,” said Plange. “The design is inspired by Lebron James and varsity style. The shoes are a powerful symbol of sport and school.”
Plange, who migrated to the United States from Ghana at the age of five, said she has had a lot of experiences with many different groups of people. “…So I’ve lived through contrasts, like coming from Ghana and growing up in California, like not having a lot of money growing up and yet participating in honors classes, which included a specific kind of student. I think those experiences, along with the ability to travel as an adult, were big reasons why I design the way I do, because you’re able to see that the world is a lot smaller than you think, and that people are not as segmented or opposite in thought as you might think they are.”
Working with James, according to Plange, has been nothing short of amazing. She got the opportunity to bring forth his personality and influence in education, sport, and culture in her designs, thus making the world see James from four different perspectives. The four-part series will show him as a young superstar, as a family man, as an educational advocate, and more.
The collection of four shoes will drop throughout the Holiday season, with the first going up on Plange’s website, SNKRS and other select retailers from June 2.
The Yaaku, a name which translates to the hunting people, migrated from Ethiopia to the caves and hills of the Mukogodo forest in Kenya’s Rift Valley more than a century ago.They were known to keep bees and began trading with the Maasai, the country’s largest pastoral people. The Yaaku eventually assimilated into Masai culture, adopting the Masai tongue over their own Cushitic language.
United Airlines’ quest for growth has led it to re-launch nonstop services to Accra, Ghana, adding to the carrier’s long-haul list after cutting the route back in 2012. The airline aiming at connecting Washington’s Dulles International Airport and Kotoka International Airport with thrice-weekly flights.
With the flights currently up for sale starting May 14, outbound flights from Dulles will operate on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays while return flights from Accra’s Kotoka International Airport will operate on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
With just 5,282 miles between the two destinations, the 10-hour service will be operated using the Boeing 787-8 airliner configured with a 243-seat configuration consisting of 28 Polaris business class seats, 21 premium economy seats, 36 economy plus seats and 159 economy seats
This new service is also part of the ongoing efforts to deepen the already-existing bilateral relationship between Ghana and the USA, according to Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority President and CEO Jack Potter in an official statement.
“The national capital region is home to one of the largest population of native Ghanaians in the United States, and we are honored to welcome United Airline’s new route from Dulles international Airport to Accra, as we work together to forge an important new link between our two countries,” said Potter.
“Today, Accra joins nearly 40 other nonstop international destinations currently served from Dulles International Airport, offering our customers more global connectivity as demand for air travel continues to rise,” Potter added.
United says its new nonstop service to Accrameans the airline is the only U.S. carrier offering the nonstop flight from Washington, D.C. The United States has more than 116,000 Ghanaians living in the country, making the US the third-highest Ghanian population in the world. DC is home to the second-largest population of Ghanaians in the United States.
The Afro-Bolivians are descendants of Enslaved Africans that arrive during the Spanish Empire from the 16th to the 19th centuries to work in the mines of Potosi, a city in southwestern Bolivia. But most of the about half a million Enslaved that arrived in Bolivia (then the colonial territory of Upper Peru) could not adapt to the cold weather of Potosi.
So by the beginning of the 19th Century, they were relocated to the Yungas where it was warm to work on the Spanish-owned hacienda plantation estates. There, an unofficial kingdom was formed among a group of enslaved Afro-Bolivians in 1820. It would take decades before this kingdom would be officially recognized by the Bolivian Government
Mururata, a village, has been the “center of this kingdom”. And it is where Julio Bonifaz Pinedo lives and “rules” as the king of the Afro-Bolivians. Afro-Bolivians, numbering about 26,000, have over the years lost much of their history including their languages and religions but not their royal heritage. They still have their king, who is highly respected.
Living in the small village of Mururata, about a two-hour drive north of the capital La Paz, the 78-year-old king does not have a throne or a court, though he does have a cape with gold embroidery and a metallic crown. He doesn’t wear them all the time – only on special occasions like local festivals, according to AFP. In fact, one might not be aware of his presence among his community’s 2,000 residents. His home, where he lives with his wife, the queen Angélica Larrea and their son, doubles as a grocery store that sells oil, bananas, soft drinks and canned sardines.
Pinedo, who has mostly worked in agriculture, still goes out to the fields often to farm coffee, citrus fruits, and coca. His wife helps him manage the grocery store while their son and sole heir, Prince Rolando, is studying law at the Universidad de Los Andes in La Paz. “I would like to keep pushing forward to make the Afro-Bolivian community more recognized and visible, the way my father has done until now,” he told BBC.
His father Pinedo is the first king to be officially recognized by the Bolivian state. This was after Bolivia’s minority ethnic groups were acknowledged by the state in 2006. Pinedo, who inherited his title from his African ancestors and was crowned in 1992 by the community, was in 2007 crowned again by the government of La Paz. This helped raise awareness of Afro-Bolivian customs and traditions, including their kingdom, according to one account.
Pinedo’s title is mainly symbolic. He is not recognized as a political authority and does not collect taxes. “My title [as king] is mostly symbolic,” he was quoted by BBC. “I’m not like these rich kings of Europe, but I represent the Afro-Bolivian community, and this is a huge responsibility to me.”
How it all started for Pinedo
Pinedo is a descendant of Uchicho, a prince from the ancient Kingdom of Kongo who was brought to Bolivia as a slave by the Spaniards in 1820. Uchicho worked at the estate of the Marquis of Pinedo, whose name he adopted. In 1832, he was crowned by other enslaved people in the Yungas. He was succeeded by Bonifaz, next José and Bonifacio.
King Bonifacio, who was Pinedo’s grandfather, was crowned in 1932. “King Bonifacio only had daughters, so one generation was skipped, leaving the kingdom without a king for 38 years until Pinedo was crowned in 1992 by the community,” the BBC report explained.
Years after Pinedo’s official coronation ceremony in La Paz, his image has become “a strong source of cultural identity and belonging” for Afro-Bolivians, Jorge Medina, the country’s first black congressman, told AFP. Medina and the king however believe that there is still a lot of work to be done to tackle discrimination faced by indigenous people, including Afro Bolivians and other vulnerable groups.
North Carolina-born rapper J. Cole recently popped back up with the announcement of his latest project and documentary, The Off Season. But, it looks like the entertainer has been preparing more than hit classics. According to The New Times Rwanda, Cole will soon be suiting up for an appearance on Rwanda’s Africa Basketball League team.
He has been spotted in Kigali and his name was also found on the team’s roster.
The Aeta or Agta people are the indigenous black-skinned people who inhabit the remote and mountainous regions of Luzon, Philippines. The Aeta are under the bracket of Austronesians, groups in Southeast Asia, Oceania and East Africa that speak languages belonging to the Austronesian language family. Austronesians also reside in South Africa, Suriname, Mauritius and some portions of the Andaman.
Calling all food enthusiasts, especially those who love learning about the impact Black and African food ways made on the cuisine in the United States. Netflix will soon release a new 4-part docuseries, High on the Hog, celebrating and highlighting the culinary contributions of Black and African people, and how we shaped American cuisine as a whole.
The series, set to release May 26, is hosted by popular Black food writer Stephan Satterfield who takes viewers on a multi-continent journey of how our food traditions actually reached the United States, and how some cities are still holding on to said traditions.
According to a press release, the series takes viewers on a culinary journey that ventures from Africa to the deep south. The immersive four-episode docu-series part culinary show, part travelogue follows food writer Stephen Satterfield as he meets the chefs, historians, and activists who are keeping centuries-old traditions alive. Over Western African stews, soul food, barbecue, and fine dining, the series, directed by Academy Award winner Roger Ross Williams, reveals an expansive, eclectic culinary history shaped by slavery, the Civil War, Juneteenth, and present day. It’s a story of Black America’s resilience, enduring creativity, and vital contribution to America’s kitchen.
“It’s the story of Black people in America. It all feels very much part of the racial reckoning going on in America and the world right now. Reclaiming our contribution to this country is also about reclaiming our culinary contribution. Because what is food? It brings people together,” Director Roger Ross Williams said.
An adaption of the book penned by food historian Dr. Jessica B. Harris, each episode of High On The Hog travels to destinations like Benin and Charleston, South Carolina, while unpacking the deep connection of enslavement and the way in which we as Black/African Americans eat— ultimately laying out the map of how certain culinary customs appeared in US culture.
“It’s bringing context to food history and the resilience, artistry, and impact that African Americans have had on the American kitchen. Food is a great connector, the more that people can come together and break bread, the more we can celebrate our commonalities as opposed to our differences’ Executive Producer Adrienne Tobak said in a statement.
Watch the trailer below: