There’s a popular proverb displayed on a sign in the Barbados Museum: ‘Unless you know the road you’ve come down, you cannot know where you are going.’ As Barbados continues on its path as a young republic, it’s a reminder that the past is always present in the future.
The sign stands at the opening to the museum’s exhibit on Africa, where most of the island’s population have their heritage but which is half way across the world. As the museum reminds us, over a period of 500 years many Caribbean societies ‘were created by the forces of capitalism’ and these forces of capitalism had empire at their heart.
As an internationalist magazine, with a focus on the Global South, how Empire shaped our world is an essential part of any story we tell. So, as voted for by our readers, it’s a topic we’ve been tackling head on for the past year. This Big Story rounds off our Decolonize How? series, which has been using the methods of ‘solutions journalism’ to do just that.
Keep an eye on our website for more stories until the end of September, plus ways in which you can join the discussion: online and in person. Catch up on the rest of the series at: newint.org/special/decolonize-how
This edition also includes two new sections: an extended commentary slot, in which Nanjala Nyambola takes on racist border policies, and a longer book review. Let us know what you think, and what we could tackle in these pieces in the future.
Amy Hall for the New Internationalist co-operative.
Decolonizing Africa’s media means interrogating its form as well as its content. Patrick Gathara examines an initiative which tells narrative stories through live performance in Kenya, and asks what lessons it holds for the continent at large.
At least 500 people have drowned in the Mediterranean in a single incident, just the latest in increasingly normalized disasters. Yet in the Western political milieu, it made barely a ripple. Nanjala Nyabola asks why migration policies have become so deadly, and what it will take to change them.
From the archive: New Internationalist’s first ever issue, in March 1973, arrived amid escalating tensions in southern Africa, with Ian Smith’s white-ruled Rhodesia imposing a blockade on neighbouring Zambia.