Daily Archives: October 11, 2019

Jack Harries, “Coming together, in peace, in a celebration of life…” | Extinction Rebellion

Extinction RebellionOct 11, 2019

The International Rebellion is taking place across the globe now. Sign up for London here https://Rebellion.earth/international… Worldwide actions are planned in other major cities. See if your city is listed https://Rebellion.earth/international… or, if your city is not listed, then please visit our global site https://Rebellion.Global/ to get in touch with your local group.

International Rebellion: Day 4 & 5 Round Up

Streamed live 2 hours ago

Extinction Rebellion

Day 5

2019 African Studies Association – Teacher’s Workshop

Every year, the African Studies Association (ASA) hosts a Teachers’ Workshop, a day of professional development events focused on supporting K-12 teachers’ knowledge and skills to teach about Africa. We are pleased to host the Teachers’ Workshop this year at the Harvard University Center for African Studies. Sessions are relevant to K-12 English Language Arts, Social Science, and Art teachers and are taught by master teachers and experts in African studies.

Six concurrent workshops will delve into approaches to teach about Africa, the role of art and masking traditions, the importance of women’s resistance during colonial rule, ways of collaborating across borders to connect the study of Africa to the civil rights movement in the United States, and the crucial move of teaching about Africa as we mark the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship that bore a cargo of enslaved Africans in Virginia in 1619. A wonderful musical and dance performance will close the day, led by youth from Africano in Waltham, MA. In addition, teachers will receive a free How Big is Africa Poster and Curriculum Guide, free Teaching Africa in the 21st century books and other curriculum resources. Parking vouchers will be made available to participants and an East African lunch will be provided. Teachers will receive a certificate of attendance awarding Professional Development Points.

See further details below.

* * *

As part of the Annual Meeting of the ASA, please join us for a day of engaging professional development sessions designed for K-16 educators teaching about Africa.

8:30-9:00 Registration & Welcome

Coffee, tea, and light breakfast

9:00-9:15 Opening Remarks

9:15-10:45 Session 1A: Colonized Women Talk Back

This lesson introduces students to African women who challenged colonial rule. Using a role play activity, participants learn about African women activists from Zimbabwe to Egypt, from the 16th century Kongo Kingdom confrontation with the Portuguese to the apartheid struggle in the 1980s.
Facilitators: Dr. Vanessa Akinyi Oyugi (Howard University) & Dr. Barbara Brown (Boston University)

Session 1B: The ABCs of Teaching about Africa

This workshop will explore and highlight simplified and effective ways for teaching about Africa. Using comparative perspectives teachers will be introduced to themes that will empower them to teach about the continent more creatively and effectively. Participants will also receive free copies of Teach Africa: Taking Africa to the Classroom.
Facilitator: Dr. Agnes Ngoma Leslie (University of Florida)

10:45-11:00 Break

11:00-12:30 Session 2A: Problematizing the Mask

This presentation will explore the strategies, challenges, imperatives, pitfalls, and potential rewards of including African masking traditions in the k-12 art curriculum, with implications for masks in general. While not a requirement, it is suggested that participants take the session before attending Session 3A: Approaches to Making and Using Masks.
Facilitator: Dr. Felice Amato (Boston University)

11:00-12:30 Session 2B: 1619’s Harvest: Stories of Resilience and Resistance

In 1619, the transatlantic world was a changing world; people’s lives were being transformed by forces larger than the individual. This session will focus on examining the lives of people who lived through this transition. Using stories of resilience and resistance, activities will probe the experiences of people who began their lives as free people and analyze how they moved beyond the transitory condition of enslavement.
Facilitator: Roberta Logan Masks (Boston University)

12:30-1:30 Lunch & Keynote by Dr. Joyce Hope Scott

1:30-2:50 Session 3A: Approaches to Making and Using Masks

Participants in this session will “think through making,” with the goal to become more comfortable with the tools and techniques of creating cardboard masks. The purpose is to think differently about how to teach masks in the classroom in a way that helps students join in the exuberance and universal appeal of these powerful phenomena without appropriating or decontextualizing. While not a requirement, it is suggested that participants interested in this session also register for Session 2A: Teaching Africa through Art: Problematizing the Mask.
Facilitator: Dr. Felice Amato (Boston University)

Session 3B: Collaborative Learning between U.S. and South African Classrooms

This session provides frameworks and tools from a cross-border collaborative project between U.S. and South African teachers. The two presenters (one in the U.S. and one in Johannesburg, South Africa) will discuss their joint curriculum design that brings together civil rights and apartheid struggles. Facilitators will also discuss the benefits and challenges of cross-border collaborations and ways teachers can adapt similar programs in their contexts. Student voices and student work will be featured to showcase the possibilities of transnational collaborative learning and teaching.
Facilitators: Thomas Thurston, Waltrina Kirland-Mullens & Mary Khuduge (Yale University)

2:50-3:00 Break

3:00-3:30 Musical Performance by youth from Africano in Waltham, MA.

For inquiries regarding the 2019 Teachers’ Workshop, please contact Dr. Elsa Wiehe, ewiehe@bu.edu

Full program description and presenter bios coming soon!

For $25 registration fee, participants will be provided with:

  • Hands-on learning experiences led by experts in pedagogy and African Studies
  • A certificate of attendance for Professional Development Points from the Boston University African Studies Center
  • How Big is Africa Poster & Curriculum Guide, and other teaching resources
  • Free books
  • Access to the African Studies Association Book Fair and all other African Studies Association Meeting 2019 panels
  • Breakfast & a delicious African-inspired lunch
  • Vouchers for discounted parking in Cambridge

Workshops are relevant to K-12 ELA, social science, and art teachers.


See related discussions of teaching African history with rare and fragile materials.


BBC World Service – Boston Calling, Into the thaw – Antarctic Ice

Boston Calling

Is Thwaites Glacier doomed? Scientists race against time to find out.


Nigerian Students Join Global Fight for Climate Action

VOA News Oct 11, 2019

The climate action movement known as “Fridays for Future” has spread to Nigeria, where it is being led by a 16-year-old school girl, Faithwins Iwuh. The movement started by a Swedish teenager, Greta Thunberg, now has millions of school children worldwide, who are demanding immediate action to counteract global warming. For VOA, Timothy Obiezu has more from Abuja.

Zadie Smith’s First Short Story Collection, ‘Grand Union,’ Is Here | On Point

“Grand Union,” by Zadie Smith. (Alex Schroeder/On Point)

Zadie Smith is with us to talk about her first short story collection, “Grand Union.”


Zadie Smith, celebrated writer and author of “White Teeth,” “On Beauty” and “Swing Time.” Her new book is “Grand Union,” her first short story collection. Professor of fiction at New York University.

Interview Highlights

On the advantages of the short story format

“I think for me it’s about playfulness. … I guess the thing I always fear is rigidity or getting stuck, and stories were just an opportunity to think differently, think about different kinds of writing, different ways of writing. A novel is a very long stretch in one place. And so it was amazing fun to do this. Fun for the irresponsibility, fun for the freedom, fun because I didn’t have to be just one writer. I could be more than one and that’s exciting to me.

“And fun because it was there was a lot of improvisation and adaptation. I started to think about it the way I think about music. If I’m making music, or sometimes I sing, and so much of that is improvisation. You have the chords, but then you work around it. And I thought about how rarely you do that in writing. You get so anxious and so stuck. So I experimented with things, like found objects, for example, like trying to write about what fell in front of me on a particular day — something that I think visual artists do a lot of, painters do. I want to see if I could do it in language.”

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On her story “Kelso Deconstructed” in the collection. It’s based on the true murder of Kelso Cochrane in 1959. He was just 32 when he was murdered by a group of white youths, none of whom ever faced prosecution.

In the process of writing this story, did it help you understand this moment in British history in a different way?

“It made me understand that there’s a part of British history that the British don’t recognize and don’t understand. Black British history is British history. And until it’s included in our classes and no knowledge of our own country. It’ll be hard for Britain to change and become an adult country, which it has yet to do my opinion.

“It’s a long process for me, of kind of being out of English schools and understanding what was not taught. And, fundamentally, what was not taught was our true colonial history and the true history of British slavery, which is the equal of American slavery. Just because it was offshore doesn’t mean it wasn’t significant. All these stories — and there so many of them — it’s not to punish the British, but if you don’t know your own history, you are condemned to repeat it, and you are also condemned to be innocent. I think the British idea, which I certainly had growing up, that we were — ‘we’ — fundamentally on the side of the angels, it’s not a helpful thing to believe as a nation, because it means you go forward in innocence always.

“If you think of yourself as a hero, and a lot of the language we’re hearing in the papers — I was amazed, when I got back to England recently — about Brexit is explicitly Second World War, heroic language. Even the smallest article I read in The Evening Standard — ‘House prices are falling. It’s tin hat time.’ — an economic crisis brought on by ourselves, for ourselves is described as a kind of wartime attack.

“You get stuck in these metaphors, and historical truth is a way of escaping metaphorical truth. And I think it would be incredibly healing for everyone in England, black and white, to understand what Britain was in the 19th century. This grandeur that we’re always trying to return to was not so grand. And it’s important to know that. There’s many things to love about Britain. It’s an extraordinary place. But it’s not an innocent place.”

…(read more).


Revealed: top UK thinktank spent decades undermining climate science | Environment | The Guardian

The Institute of Economic Affairs has previously faced controversy over the political nature of its work. Photograph: Graeme Robertson/The Guardian

Institute of Economic Affairs has links to 14 members of Boris Johnson’s cabinet

The UK’s most influential conservative thinktank has published at least four books, as well as multiple articles and papers, over two decades suggesting manmade climate change may be uncertain or exaggerated.

The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) has issued publications arguing climate change is either not significantly driven by human activity or will be positive. The group is one of the most politically influential thinktanks in the UK, and boasts that 14 members of Boris Johnson’s cabinet, including the home secretary, foreign secretary and chancellor, have been associated with the group’s past and current initiatives.

Despite a longstanding international consensus among climatologists that human activity is accelerating climate change, the IEA’s publications throughout the 1990s and 2000s heavily suggested climate science was unreliable or exaggerated. In recent years the group has focused more on free-market solutions to reducing carbon emissions.

The IEA said it did not take a corporate position on any policy matter. It said the majority of the publications identified by the Guardian predated most of its current staff.

…(read more).