We have a real problem

Greetings,

I have been navigating between power outages, actively searching for work and doing the work that comes in and last week’s newsletter was the something that had to give. As a freelancer, the contraction of work in the last year that we have been dealing with the global pandemic has been, at times, debilitating. I guess we all get our moments when all we want to do is run away and hide, or simply just sleep. But, the world still turns, the sun still rises and sets … in the words of Tupac Shakur, life goes on. And on it must. With or without us.


1

Living in a country where the greatest pandemic is violence against women is heavy. Patriarchy and its consequences are a global concern but, at times, it seems like, in South Africa, it operates at a higher and even more tragic level. Last year I came across Amarachi Nickabugu’s Twitter account cannonball and it truly pulls the veil back on how the world has been setup to the extreme advantage of men. The Nigerian woman calling out sexism one tweet at a time.


2

In Nina Is Everywhere I Go, Tiana Clark writes: “As a writer, I know I can’t sustain one note, and that poems can be mighty containers for empathy, especially for the people who have hurt us. But again, I want my anger to be useful. I want my anger to give me permission to write what I need to survive. I learned this from Nina.” A truly beautifully and insightfully written essay.


3

The LGBTQIA+ community is under attack globally. Sometimes overtly, over times subtly. In Ghana, my fatherland, the attacks have been overt over the last month or so. After Our LGBTQ+ Center in Ghana Had to Close, My Hashtag Has Become a Rallying Cry for Equality gives voice to some of the challenges that activists are facing.


4

The global pandemic has been particularly difficult for the creative industries, especially on the African continent where, even when things were ‘normal’, it was a difficult world to operate in. The story of the artist dying a pauper continues to be a reality for many. Hopefully, that will eventually change. How A Global Pandemic Energized African Artists to Get Serious About Music Publishing.


5

While we draw from the West when it comes to making sense of this increasingly digitised world, we do need to contextualise it, with an African lens. I recently wrote about my challenges when it comes to monetising content and media in Making money off newsletters and other content.


6

Parenting in digital times can be a minefield. I spend a lot of time trying to figure out how much screen time is enough. What I hadn’t contended with was The Dangers of Distracted Parenting.


7

I have been a fan of Mariah Carey’s music since I first heard Vision of Love in 1990 and I just finished her memoirs, The Meaning of Mariah Carey. I had never realised how heavy her upbringing was and what she has gone through at various stages of her life. Explains a lot in terms of her lyrics and the messages behind them. An enjoyable, often uncomfortable read. It did take me a chapter or two to really get into it.


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Easy

Kojo

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