2020 - ROAPE
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May 2020

In this blogpost, ROAPE’s Jean Copans discusses his paper (available to read for free) on social class, African studies and linguistic divides. While lamenting how radical views have largely disappeared from the French intellectual scene, he notes that anglophone African studies almost entirely neglect work in French.  Copans argues that we must transcend from the start the constraints imposed by geopolitical and linguistic zones....

Moses E. Ochonu writes that the increase of poverty in Africa from the 1980s, exacerbated by neoliberal reforms, opened the door to the veneration of entrepreneurship as a remedy for mass poverty. Looking at the history of entrepreneurship on the continent, Ochonu sees a mobile and malleable category which has little in common with the neoliberal fetishization of personal responsibility....

Ambreena Manji argues that we need a better understanding of home, labour and inequality in the pandemic and that feminist thought is central to a just future. Focusing on the Global South, she argues that women have borne the brunt of the violence directed towards the homes of working people....

Two reports from Kenya and Nigeria look at the impact of the pandemic in different areas of life on the continent. Nyambura Kamau writes how people have been advised to wash hands regularly with running water and soap but even the term ‘running water’ in Mathare - a collection of informal settlements in Nairobi - is a cruel mirage. While Lai Brown reports on the struggles of woman in Nigeria. For many women it is a case of a triple attack - there is the viral offensive in the streets, and hunger and domestic abuse inside homes....

Last week ROAPE and BIEA organised a webinar on the Covid-19 pandemic in Africa. Activists and researchers from around the continent discussed the impact of the measures taken against the coronavirus by the ruling classes. In this blogpost we introduce the full video recording of the meeting with all of the speakers, Tafadzwa Choto, Femi Aborisade, Gacheke Gachihi, Lena Anyuolo, Gyekye Tanoh and Heike Becker.  ...

Habib Ayeb writes how the global pandemic is a direct result of the neoliberal model of production, which is based on the assumption of the superiority of human beings over nature. The consequences are tragically diverse – from the extinction of bees, one of the most important links in the ecological chain – to the emergence of deadly new viruses. Assessing the public health response to Covid-19 in Tunisia, Ayeb argues that we must seek an alternative to capitalism before the system attempts to relaunch the processes of accumulation....

Walter Rodney’s influence on radical political economy and history, on subjects that continue to be of central importance to the Review of African Political Economy, is immense. To mark the continued vibrancy of his ideas and work, roape.net is hosting an on-going debate on Walter Rodney’s legacy....