Ghana

A Prognostication and a Disclaimer
June 08, 2010

Before prognostication, a disclaimer: I have never been able to pick a winner. Not that it has ever stopped me from trying to. Well, it has stopped me from buying stock, but let’s not talk about that. I picked a winner in 1970. I chose Pele and Brazil but I was 10 and my dad told me to. I came close in 1974. I picked Holland–West Germany in the finals (Ajax and Bayern Munich were by the far the top clubs in the early 70’s) but I thought Cruyff and Neeskens would waltz through Beckenbauer and Netzer. Heartbreaker. Oh well, this was then.

Did "African American" History Really Happen in Atlanta, Cleveland, Philly, and Detroit? Listening to the Census.
January 22, 2010

The figures from the American Community Survey just in are more than crunched numbers. They suggest that this might be a good year for a certain term now familiar in American parlance to be, if not consigned to history, reassigned. Namely, as of now, almost 1 in 10 black people are foreign-born. About 1 in 30 are from Africa. Which means that they are--you see where I’m going--African American in the true sense.

Barack Obama and Foreign Policy by Biography
November 19, 2009

The Washington Post writes today about the limits of Obama's biography in foreign policy. The paper's story notes that Obama talked extensively about his biography and personal experiences in Asia, then asks: But is his biography-as-diplomacy approach beginning to show its limits? Obama does not fly home with any big breakthroughs or any evidence that he has forged stronger personal ties with regional leaders.

Ladies First, Please
November 18, 2009

Is climate change gender-neutral? Not according to the U.N. Population Fund, which earlier today released a report arguing that women suffer disproportionately from the impacts of global warming. Especially in developing countries, they can't flee changes like desertification and sea-level rise as easily as young men, who aren’t as tied to children and households. They're often caught up in civil conflicts ignited by scarce resources.

Out of Africa
February 14, 2005

Melville J. Herskovits and the Racial Politics of Knowledge By Jerry Gershenhorn (University of Nevada Press, 338 pp., $65)  Melville J.

Enemy's Enemy
August 04, 2004

KAMPALA, UGANDA--On a steamy Sunday morning, several hundred students are dancing in the aisles of a dilapidated college lecture hall. Dressed in shabby, secondhand sport coats, the men pivot their hips, flinging their elbows back and forth to a lively gospel tune. The women's cornrows bounce up and down. With a showman's sense of timing, Pastor Martin Ssempa sidles slowly onto the stage, grooving to the beat. "Thank you, God!" shouts the bespectacled, 36-year-old evangelist. He has unbuttoned the top button of his natty, cream-colored shirt, and his blue tie hangs loose. "Can you feel it?

The Bill Clinton of the U.N.
August 06, 1996

For at least six months before the United States announced it would veto his nomination for a second term as Secretary-General of the United Nations, Boutros Boutros-Ghali had been running hard for re-election. Not only had he been courting his traditional patrons, the French and the Chinese, but in his travels in the Third World, particularly in Africa, he had repeatedly characterized his tenure at the U.N. as a work in progress. He needed, he insisted, another term to finish the job. "Every U.N. secretary-general has received two terms," Boutros-Ghali has said publicly.

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