Mandisi Majavu

Mandisi Majavu

Mandisi Majavu is the Book Reviews Editor of Interface: A Journal For and About Social Movements. He is a PhD candidate at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He is the co-editor of 'Visual Century: South African art in context Vol 4: 1990 - 2007' (Wits Press, 2011).

Some of his work has appeared in the anthologies: 'Real Utopia: Participatory society for the 21st Century' (Ak Press, 2008) and 'Beyond Borders: Thinking critically about global studies (Worth Publishers, 2006).

Homage to Havana

Picture credit: July 27, 1991: Fidel Castro and Nelson Mandela during the celebration of the "Day of the Revolution" in Cuba courtesy Belfast Telegraph Mandisi Majavu - Cuba is reportedly sending the largest foreign medical team from a single country to West Africa to help fight the Ebola virus. Cuba's contribution to the development and progress of African countries is often unacknowledged in the mainstream public discourse. One is more likely to read about the United Nation’s condemnation of Cuba’s human rights record than about the vital role Cuba has played assisting African countries establish public health systems. Cuba has helped establish...

Medical Racism and the African Patient

Picture credit: afreecom/Idrissa Soumare Mandisi Majavu - In his book, Infections and Inequalities, Paul Farmer writes that we live in a world where infections pass easily across borders, while resources, including cumulative scientific knowledge are blocked at customs. The recent outbreak of Ebola in West Africa is a case in point. The World Health Organisation has warned that the number of Ebola cases could rise to 20,000 largely because the medical staff in these West African countries do not have the resources to deal with the rapid spread of...

'Failed States' and 'Ungoverned Spaces': The Thinking behind US Foreign Policy in Africa

Picture credit: American President Barack Obama courtesy Press Herald Mandisi Majavu - The US-Africa Leaders Summit currently taking place in Washington points to Africa’s growing strategic importance to US interests. The theme of the Summit is “Investing in the Next Generation” and aims to advance the US’s focus on trade and investment in Africa. Historically, the US has always adopted a militarised foreign policy towards Africa. When the Bush administration launched the Defense Unified Combatant Command for Africa (AFRICOM) in 2007, that move was...

An 'Integration Challenge': How Does It Feel to Be a Global Problem?

Picture credit: Haeferl/Wikimedia Commons Mandisi Majavu - Many South Africans see black immigrants as a threat to their privileges. African immigrants from a refugee background, in particular, are viewed as a social burden by societal institutions. These xenophobic attitudes are not unique in South Africa. Historically, black African refugees received little help from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). For instance, during a politically volatile period in Africa, the 1960s and 1970s, many refugees in Africa were left to...

The Mere Mention of the Words 'Affirmative Action'...

Picture credit: Affirmative action protest in the U.S. courtesy Americana: The Journal of American Pop Culture Mandisi Majavu - Last month the BBC published an article titled, “Do white people have a future in South Africa?” Western institutions like the BBC see no problem in commissioning articles like this due to mainstream whites’ misconception of racism as a zero-sum game. Research shows that mainstream whites associate a decrease in anti-black racism with an increase in anti-white racism. The notion of “reverse racism” is rooted in this misconception. Proponents of “reverse...

Society of Fences: A Solution to the 'Demographic Problem'

Picture credit: African asylum seekers protest courtesy You Tube screenshot. Mandisi Majavu - Jean-Jacques Rousseau once wrote that “the first man who, having enclosed a piece of ground, bethought himself of saying This is mine, and found people simple enough to believe him, was the real founder of civil society.” Modern nation states and their immigration laws are largely founded on this logic. The Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, was appealing to this logic when he labelled African asylum seekers, who took to the streets last month to protest against...