Africa Unite! A history of Pan-Africanism
Are we African? What is Africa? From this double question, born in the 18th century in the African diaspora deported to the Americas, emerged a vast intellectual, political and cultural movement which took the name of Pan-Africanism at the turn of the 20th century. This movement constituted, for the Africans of the two sides of the Atlantic, a privileged space of meetings and mobilizations.
From the Haitian revolution of 1791 to the election of the first black president of the United States in 2008, including the independence of African states,
Amzat Boukari-Yabara retraces, in this ambitious historical fresco, the singular itinerary of these personalities who, like W.E.B. Du Bois, Marcus Garvey, George Padmore, C.L.R. James, Kwame Nkrumah or Cheikh Anta Diop, have put their lives at the service of the liberation of Africa and the emancipation of blacks throughout the world. Mixing the voices of these leading actors, soon joined by a number of artists, writers and musicians, such as Bob Marley or Miriam Makeba, the Pan-African polyphony began to resonate in the four corners of the “black world”, from New York to Monrovia, from London to Accra, from Kingston to Addis Ababa.
The slogans popularized by Pan-African activists have not all borne the hoped-for fruit. But, at a time when Africa is facing new challenges, Pan-Africanism remains a building site for the future. Sooner or later Africans will break down the geographic and mental boundaries that still hamper their freedom.