Links I liked

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From Gerry Simpson on Twitter: “Lebanon – size of UK’s Devon & Cornwall regions – shelters 1.5 million refugees while whole of UK has about 150,000”

  • Satire: The Gospel According to Nigeria. “In the beginning the British created the Northern and Southern protectorates. Now, the nation was formless and empty and darkness covered our collective identity…”  Not satire: Uganda invests US$88K in a “porn-detecting machine

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Links I Liked

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  • Why are so many African flags red, yellow and green?  It may be connected to Ethiopia’s successful resistance to colonialism (although Ken Opalo raises other posibilities in the comments)
  • Song of the week: Subculture Sage‘s remarkable new video “Gold” documents a day in the life of an informal gold miner in Zimbabwe

Links I liked

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Fantastic Port Harcourt photography from Enefaa Thomas

  • GiveDirectly is launching a new basic income program in Kenya.  They’ll match the first US$10 million of donations, and (on my grad student budget) I’ve just contributed $250.  There’s substantial evidence that this type of program is effective at reducing poverty, and this is a great chance to support it.

Links I liked

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Sockhna #3 (2015), Vincent Michéa. Check out the rest of his gorgeous Senegalese portraits at True Africa

  • The bridge to Sodom & Gomorrah — beautifully written article about daily life in one of the largest informal settlements in Accra, by Yepoka Yeebo
  • Selam Gebrekidan has a gripping article on the extended family networks used to pay smugglers bringing Eritrean refugees to Europe.  An underdiscussed aspect of the refugee crisis is the degree to which it’s facilitated by mobile phones, for both communication and money transfers
  • Liberia has outsourced its entire primary education system to an American company.  I’m of two minds on this.  Public education is a phenomenal achievement, in historical perspective, and I’m hesitant to embrace wholesale privatization.  On the other hand, Liberia’s system is performing so poorly at the moment that private providers probably can’t be worse than the current public standard.  It could be a good opportunity for innovation
  • No street address? No problem! A Nigerian startup promises delivery of packages from major retailers and shipping services anywhere in Lagos in less than three hours
  • My favorite new African newsletter is This Week in Africa, run by Jeff Paller and Philip Dube
  • Video of the week: I can’t stop watching Major Lazer’s stunning new video for Light It Up.  Endlessly danceable song, stunning visuals from southern Ghana, cameo from poet Kwado Nkita-Mayala – a clear early candidate for best video of the year

Links I liked

 tumblr_nk923azevv1rb4yfjo1_1280Thought for the day (via Tumblr)

  • I’ve been paying more attention to North Korea ever since I picked up a copy of Barbara Demick’s Nothing to Envy a few years ago and found myself reading the entire thing in one sitting.  Daniel Tudor & James Pearson’s North Korea Confidential picks up where Demick’s book ended and provides a fascinating update on the country.  Here’s a representative section of the index.  As Tyler Cowen would say, self-recommending.

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