My Quest To Teach

December 30, 2016

Building African Bloggers and Innovators in 2017

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Building African Bloggers and Innovators in 2017
William Jackson, M.Ed.
Twitter @wmjackson – #MyQuestToTeach

“What should we be doing going forward?”
Africans can save Africa: Arnold Ekpe at TEDxEuston
There are millions of potential brother and sister bloggers
in Africa, diverse people of color and culture, yearning to
tell their stories, developing and waiting to share their
Brands and expand their opportunities to collaborate in
education, business,commerce, finance and global
entrepreneurship.
This writing is a contribution of knowledge to share and
hopefully motivate and inspire Africans desiring to Blog,
Microblog,  Videoblog, Podcast and create dynamic content
within their communities. Their (African) voices and stories
are important and should be shared on a global platform of
respect and collaboration on dynamic Social Media platforms.
To represent the African diaspora and historical significance
of the art of storytelling.
What better way than to share with the world, to create unique
content that is just as diverse as the most culturally rich
continent in the world, Africa. I encourage Africans of all ages
to write their stories, to use their creativity to share innovative
ideas and create content that bridges generations and cultures.
The ability to create unique and transformative content that
can connect and unify their continent.

Following the literary talents of Chinua Achebe, Ngugi wa
Thiong’o, Wole Soyinka, Ben Okri, Buchi Emecheta, Ama
Ata Aidoo, Dinaw Mengestu, Africans are historic creators
of stories’, poets, and diverse content creators.
African children are learning that through education
they can contribute to the world in ways not available
decades ago.
Colonialism attempted to silence the voices of Africans,
it failed because the voices of Africans can be heard
whispered on the flowing waters and in the air currents,
stories that travel through the trees, and the paths both
dirt and paved across the continent.
Social Media platforms and tools are allowing African
boys and girls to share their stories with the global
community, bringing attention to their lives right from
their mouths and to the ears of billions globally.

kids

As an educator and parent I want to encourage African
children, teens, youth and young adults to share their
stories through the diverse tools that blogging has to
offer and enhance their language abilities, “language
is the way to memory.”
Prof. Wm Jackson #MyQuestToTeach
Do not allow others to tell your stories as was done
during the centuries of slavery, oppression and
colonization.
In the spirit of Chinua Achebe share your stories and
let the world hear you. Chinua Achebe the “Father of
African Literature” has stated many times that the
minds of the people were influenced by the
colonization of Europeans.
That African writers need to be activist in their
writing, to challenge the thinking of Africans, to
encourage intellectualism and activism even still
today.
The thinking and the writing of Africans are
challenging the “emperors” way of thinking,
“because the storyteller has a different agenda”
than the emperor, “Conversation with
Chinua Achebe 2012.”

shutterstock_128237849-620x350

In many ways Africans have a responsibility to
share their stories and share their voices, what
better way to tell truth to life what Europeans have
tried to deny for decades. There was a denial
of building of thought leaders and intellectuals in
Africa during colonial rule. The independence of
Ghana in 1957 and subsequently other African
countries allowed for the potential of building new
intellectuals that in turn will teach others. Sharing
the value of their voices just as Achebe, Soyinka
and others have done, storytelling is a powerful
tool to build cultural pride and dignity.
The 20th and 21st century have opened new ways
for Africans to soar, to embrace the winds of
change that allow for the chains of colonialism to
dissipate. Achebe shares that Africans have the
right to share their expressions. No matter the
medium, the tools, or the platform.
The encouragement of children is important because
as Achebe says that “children can fly,” and should
be encouraged to.
Achebe states that he writes because he likes to
write, I feel the same passion. To share not just
stories, but information to encourage people to think,
contemplate, dream, consider the possibilities to grow
beyond the limited imaginations of those that
do not respect the diversity and the heritage of African
nations or the diaspora.
Africans must tell their stories, share their voices and
build a new dynamic identity for the 21st century.
Africans are more than a people to be colonized and ruled.
They are a people that have passions, expectations, and
dreams, this should be shared with the world.
African voices can influence geopolitical decisions that
will take Africa into the 22nd century and beyond.
Africans as a collective can influence the gaps in education,
in commerce, in the innovation of technology and the
opportunities to achieve more to the benefits of Africa and
African people, not just people from other countries.
54 countries united to solve their own problems can
achieve great things if they unite and speak united. Africa
united as a strong united force to make positive and
transformative change.
These powerful words from stated that, “no foreigners
have ever developed a country, the nationals have developed
their own country.”
Africans can save Africa: Arnold Ekpe at TEDxEuston
https://youtu.be/D70ZybuB-rE

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Resources:
Bridging the Diaspora Divide – Teresa H. Clarke at TEDxEuston
https://youtu.be/sg6F-M6v1iM

South African Bloggers
http://weblogforlove.com/

Africans can save Africa: Arnold Ekpe at TEDxEuston
https://youtu.be/D70ZybuB-rE

African on the Blog
http://www.africaontheblog.com

 

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July 2, 2016

Applying the Wisdom of Wole Soyinka to African Americans

Applying the Wisdom of Wole Soyinka to African Americans
by William Jackson, M.Ed.
Edward Waters College
@wmjackson Twitter

The writings of Wole Soyinka
have inspired millions in Africa
and around the world. He is
the first African to receive
the Nobel Peace
Prize in literature and helped
to start a literary movement
with other writers like
Chinua Achebe and others that
energized a continent and sought
to change a nation.

He has inspired those that love the diversity of
writing, not just personal stories, but of literary
content and diversity that expands the intelligence
and inspires intellectual discussions.
Raised in an environment of religious change
and political chaos along with a priority of
educational attainment and civic growth. Soyinka
was born in an era of colonization, and conflict.
Civil discourse and the drive for independence from
British rule in his native Nigeria. The violence
of a growing democracy reaching to branch out
of civil wars and military dictatorships.

The growth of writers of color and culture is
important to tell the stories of people of
color and culture. From Africa to Asia, from
South America to Saudi Arabia and from the
Arctic to Antarctica, people are writing to tell
their stories.

The explosion of writing camps, seminars,
conferences, meetups and other events are
attended by more and more African American
writers to strengthen their knowledge of the
writing process, building readership and gaining
more exposure to the craft of story creation and
authorship. Writers have a growing responsibility
to be politically and civilly active.
In the past 5 years more women of color are
writing on platforms that are so diverse they are
meeting the needs of issues unimaginable to
discuss just 2 to 4 years ago. Traditionally men
were the bloggers, podcasters, microbloggers and
content creators of the bloggersphere from the
80’s of early blogging until the mid-2000’s when
women caught on to the connectivity of
blogging/writing.  Women of color and culture have
a solidarity because of the lack of respect from
mass media. Women tackle issues that face them,
they don’t dance around them, there is a seriousness
that is felt and experienced globally.

Now women are dominating the digital platforms of
the Internet and running with content exclusively
tackling the issues that women can relate to, identify
with and share with other women no matter their
cultural diversity of lifestyle.
My writing growth is infused from listening to the
interviews of Wole Soyinka, Chinua Achebe and
other African writers who are politically, culturally
and socially active. African American students
need to be exposed to writing even  before they attend
higher education. African American students need
to apply innovative and critical thinking skills which
are gained through reading, writing and intellectual
thought.
Here are 21 ways to help the growth of African
American communities to build writers,
educators, business leaders, thought leaders,
intellectuals and help African Americans
embrace the entrepreneurial spirit.

The Wisdom of Wole Soyinka
Applied to African American Writers

“A tiger does not shout its Tigritude,
it acts.” Wole Soyinka

1. African Americans have the
potential to launch their own political
party, but are too segmented in their
political, economic and educational visions.

2. African Americans must learn to
make transformative changes in politics,
it is not about the position at the top, but
how the people are provided quality
services that provide help to families
that help with stability, equal access to
educational resources and health care
from birth to death.

3. African Americans must have a
manifesto outlining their political
vision and mission for all people
not just African Americans.

4. African Americans seasoned as
political professionals must be willing
to have a far reaching vision for
generations in the future, not just
for their personal political gains.

5. African Americans must have a
solid Brand, not one based on
reparations of past behaviors
by whites, but solid progressive
thinking to allow for growth by all
cultures.

6. African Americans must support,
praise, build on their boys and girls
academic accomplishments.
Athletics and entertainment cannot
boost economic stability, athletics
cannot influence scientific research
and development, athletics cannot
build academic curriculums to build
colleges and universities. Academics
combined with athletics builds
scholars.

7. African Americans must position
themselves to learn from others. They
must build minds that embrace
democratic concepts and principles.

8. African Americans must move
from being excited and inspired by
personalities that provide temporary
emotional excitement. They must
embrace the intellectual abilities
of its youth and build them into
social leaders first.

9. African Americans must be able
to build leaders that have the ability
to bridge cultural, economic and
educational gaps.

10. African Americans must move
away from the mentality of colonization
and the culture of slavery.

11. African Americans must break free
of the mentalities beaten into them from
slavery and colonization about Africans
and African heritage.

12. African American men
must be their models and
methods to improve African
Americans communities.

13. African Americans must have the
honesty to talk about social issues that
divide homes, communities, churches and
schools. There needs to be a platform
to discuss these issues.

14. African Americans must stop pretending
to be scared to grow beyond their abilities.
They must recognize their potential to be
greater than they are.

15. African Americans in politics will be judged
not by the amount of times they are elected
and re-elected, but by the lives they improved
from slavery (mental and physical), increased
educational and employment opportunities
and gender equality.

16. African Americans must own their own
media outlets, they cannot continue to offer
only once a week or bi-weekly news, they
must be competitive and forward thinking.
Using Social Media platforms, tools and Apps.

17. African Americans must have agendas
that focus on building partnerships within the
African American community.

18. African American businesses must partner
with schools to be business partners, to build an
employment pool from which to provide
opportunities to African American students to
gain experience, internships and offering
scholarships.

19. African Americans must grow beyond
consumers and expand into producers

20. African American writers should be
engaged in civil events, activities and
teaching the next generation of writers.

21. African American students in high
school and college should not be scrambling
for internships, scholarships and employment
opportunities. This is why African Americans
need to grow in STEAM areas to produce
the resources for children to grow beyond
self-perceived or societal perceptions for
children of color.

“Books and all forms of
writing are terror to
those who wish to suppress
the truth.”
Wole Soyinka
 

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