November 16, 2019

"Couldn't there be more intercultural exchange OUR way?"

November 13, 2019

Who talks about refugees in Tanzania, and what do they say?

November 10, 2019

#SudanUprising in Copenhagen

June 23, 2019

On 26 June I moderate talks & debate on #SudanUprising in #Copenhagen.

The Sudanese artist Khalid Albaih joins via Skype.

Kindly read Khalid's article a...

Update: Everyday Poetics: Instagramming Life in East Africa in Belgrade

April 26, 2019


April 12, 2019

Owl in Tanzanian Parliament - bad omen for freedom of speech and assembly.

January 30, 2019

On 29 January, when the Tanzanian Parliament (Bunge) was assembled in Dodoma, an owl flew in and watched the assembly. The owl is seen in Tanzanian (e...

''We've died''

January 22, 2019

Bikozulu tells the stories of the people making it through last week's terror attack in Nairobi.

See the Instagram post here

If you ask me, and someti...

FILM: Wakamba Forever

January 21, 2019

Colonianism revisited:

..''a hilarious take on Masaku and McMillan’s first encounter set in the 21st century. From a dramatic re-telling of the Kamba o...

Chuchu: ''We are not the audience. We are the story''.

January 20, 2019

Two important tweet threads (see below) which take point of departure in the New York Times coverage of the Riverside terror attack on 15 January 2019...

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Journalism: In bed with humanitarism?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


'South Sudan children swapping guns for books' writes the BBC on January 27 2014.


As much as I would love to see children in Pibor County in Jonglei State in South Sudan hand in guns for books, I'm in doubt about the full message of this article.


First of all, it gives more information about guns than it gives about the books (UNICEF school kits?) handed out. And how to win peace by handing out books, especially if your children don't know how to read? And this is likely to be the case in Pibor County, which has not only been hard hit for years by conflict, also by a general lack of development, like education.  


It may contribute to some immidiate relief and joy, but then what? 


Intervention - and education - is definitely needed. And yes, chldren do have a right to all of that, including love, care and comfort. But the article doesn't really say exactly what will happen now..It talks about how children will be demobilised and reunited with families. But that is in fact a rather complex procedure.


Reading the article there are few critical concerns mentioned -  like what does experience say, what does it take from UN and other actors to succeeed here, etc.? The fact is that conflict is still on in South Sudan, and I'm sorry to state that the sensational tone of the article mixed with absence of critical questiosn only makes me think that this exercise is for show. Disarmament of children is part of the peace process, and this is great storytelling material and photo opportunity - but we need more articles about what happens in between demobilisation exercises like this.


Photo from Konyo Konyo Market in Juba in South Sudan.



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PhD Student, MA in African Studies, journalist and former development worker. Heart tilted towards the Balkans & East Africa: Refugees, Peripheries, Imaginaries & Humanitarianism