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Culture June 2014

Myanmar – Tattoo not taboo

From ancient time to nowadays, tattoo has became part of Burma’s culture. Between art and mysticism. An old Burmese saying goes: “Getting married, building a pagoda and getting a tattoo are the three things that once undertaken can only be altered afterwards with great difficulty”. Despite the advice, tattooing has become fashionable again among today’s…

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Music – Vusi Mahlasela

Vusi Mahlasela can truly be considered a perfect son of the South Africa Nelson Mandela believed in, the ‘Rainbow Nation’. In other words, those of the renowned writer and 1991 Nobel laureate Nadine Gordimer, ‘his tender and strong voice was ours, South Africa’s. He sings our changes, our achievements as a free people, and our…

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Guinea-Bissau – The sacrifice of the rooster

The Manjak people are an ethnic group living in Guinea-Bissau. They number about 100,000 and are scattered throughout both the continental and insular region. They are mainly rice cultivators. Keeping cultural traditions alive is important among this group. The ritual and traditions related to marriage are among the most interesting ones. During the kakaw, when…

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Book review – Horn of Africa

Broaden the discussion in order to make the topic simpler: paradoxical as it may seem, that is exactly what Kidane Mengisteab does – quite successfully – in his book The Horn of Africa, which aims to deal with two crucial challenges. In the author’s own words, ‘one is to provide a comprehensive and yet concise…

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Advocacy

Money as a mission.

St. Basil the Great, in the 4th century would call money ‘the devil’s dung,’  an epithet reused by Pope Francis last year. Oscar Wilde said…

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Baobab

The Hare, the Hippo and the Fire.

The hare and the hippo were great friends. They walked together in the veld and visited each other in their homes. The hippo was very proud…

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Youth & Mission

The Virus of Racism.

The world is seeing once again the upsurge of a vicious “virus” that has spread to every corner of the world. This time, the “virus” is…

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