Tag: dispatches


The Fear Amongst Ourselves Blog / Dispatches

Dispatches #6 Mogadishu, Somalia The fear of insecurity disconnects people in the neighborhood. It creates unspeakable walls between us. We meet and exchange greetings, all very short: Asalaamu alaikum. Wa alaikum asalaam. We do not get to know each other by names. We have lived here, a district in Mogadishu, for almost two years. Every day I take a walk around the area with my mother. When we...

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In the Borderlands Blog / Dispatches

Dispatches #5 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia I sit on a quiet patio in Bole on a Sunday afternoon, catching up with an old friend from Canada who, like me, is completing a PhD in history in the United States. Like me, she is a child of the diaspora, born abroad to parents from the Horn, retracing and rediscovering roots alongside academic research. It strikes me that...

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The Politics of Being Somali in East Africa Blog / Dispatches

Dispatches #4 Arusha – These last few weeks in Arusha have taught me what it means to exist as a body that is read differently from the average Tanzanian. There’s no question that my Blackness gives me a particular kind of African membership, but my body is still viewed peculiarly. My hair produces the greatest confusion. When it is uncovered people ask me if I’m...

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Rooting in East African Soil Blog / Dispatches

Dispatches, No. 3 Arusha I have just landed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya for a three month extended stay in Arusha, Tanzania. As I walk out the airplane doors I am greeted by the familiarity of dense air mingling with the dust that comes just before the rain. I can’t stop the smile that bursts across my face. As I walk...

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Return and Unbelonging Blog / Dispatches

Dispatches, No.1 Mogadishu The effect of a cultural bomb is to annihilate a people’s belief in their names, in their languages, in their environment, in their heritage of struggle, in their unity, in their capacities and ultimately in themselves. It makes them see their past as one wasteland of non-achievement and it makes them want to distance themselves from that wasteland. It makes them want...

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