African-Australians can face prejudice in their everyday lives, whether it’s increased likelihood of harassment by police or lazy assumptions that they come from backgrounds of poverty or violence. But identifying as African-Australian is also a source of strength, providing community ties and connecting to a rich culture.
What does it mean to be an African-Australian? Who is an African-Australian … and why is it personally important for Australians with African ancestry to embrace and own it?
We look at this subject from a range of African perspectives. Featuring host Santilla Chingaipe, with Soreti Kadir, Kirk Zwangobani and Monica Forson.
The relationship between Australia and Africa is anything but straightforward. While Australia has diplomatic ties with every African state, the continent occupies a sometimes inscrutable position in our foreign policy priorities. For Australia, Africa represents both obligation and opportunity.
Earlier this year, Australia’s foreign aid to Africa was reduced by 70 percent, leading World Vision’s Tim Costello to argue that Australia has effectively abandoned the continent. Yet many regard Africa as the next frontier of the global economy, and Australia’s business and investment interests in Africa are worth tens of billions of dollars. It’s not just about the resources sector, either – Australian involvement in African economies is increasingly reaching into other areas including education, health and the arts.
At a time when China and the US are expanding their involvement and interest in Africa, where does Australia sit? What’s the nature and extent of investment and trade (not to mention private enterprise) in Africa – and why are Australian businesses comparatively slow to invest in African prospects?
Africa Talks host Santilla Chingaipe speaks with Roger Phillips and Andrew Barnes about the opportunities and questions of Australia’s relationship with Africa.
The way the media reports on a community can have a powerful impact on the way the broader society perceives them. The less that’s known about that community, the more power the media wields, as a primary source of understanding.
Media coverage can foster understanding and empathy, by highlighting achievements by community members, sharing examples of collaboration and goodwill, and telling personal stories that illuminate challenges faced and struggles left behind. But it can also stoke prejudice and cement stereotypes.
How does the Australian media report on Africa and the African community – or communities – in Australia? Is there a perception gap between reporting and reality? And how does this impact on African-Australians?
The final of the 2015 Africa Talks series focuses on stories, both true and invented, with Africa at their heart. Host Santilla Chingaipe and guests including Abdi Aden, Alia Gabres and Valanga Khoza discuss ways in which stories of Africa work to define our understanding of the continent and dig into ideas about how modern African stories should be told.
Many of us are familiar with the stories of bestselling South African novelists Bryce Courtenay and J. M. Coetzee, and Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart – interrogating the influence of colonialism on a traditional Nigerian community – is a modern classic.
While a new generation of contemporary African-born writers like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and NoViolet Bulawayo have found success with keenly-observed and exciting books, do stories from the continent and diaspora remain on the periphery of the Australian readership? What are some of the key themes and issues in writing, publishing – and sharing – African writing in Australia.