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MF GALAXY

MF GALAXY is a weekly podcast powered by four mighty engines: * Writers on writing: the craft and the business * Pop culture including TV, movies, graphic novels, and more * Progressive politics, activism, and social enterprise * Africentric change-makers, histories, cultures, art, and more! Mixing brand-new interviews with classic conversations (from my archive of 23 years in broadcasting) with famous and dynamic figures in the arts, Hollywood, and politics, MF GALAXY will take you to places you've never been before, and deliver fresh insights on the places you've been.
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Now displaying: March, 2018
Mar 19, 2018

It’s been well over two thousand, three hundred years since an actual Egyptian sat on the throne of the Nile Valley’s greatest civilisation. Since then, only foreigners have controlled Kemet, the true name for Egypt. And yet control over Kemet remains a fierce battle to this day.

On the one side are Eurocentrists who, to build their racial self-esteem, and to justify the massive crime of imperialism against Africa, have spent the last three hundred years Whitewashing the civilisation into something that their own Greek and Roman ancestors never claimed.

On the other side is everyone who embraces the historical record, physical anthropology, comparative linguistics and culture, and, of course, DNA. They recognise what most of Hollywood, Arabs in Egypt, and the Western academic establishment refuse to: that Kemet was an African civilisation from its farmers to its pharaohs.

Previously on MF Galaxy I’ve had a range of guests discussing African Egypt, including Molefi Kete Asante, Martin Bernal, Richard Poe, and Runoko Rashidi. Today I’m delighted to add a new authority to the roster: Deidra Ramsey McIntyre. She’s a programmer, tech-writer, journalist, entrepreneur, and teacher. She’s been a cross-disciplinary writer on Kemet for years, bridging genetics, culture, and ancient documents to demonstrate the Africanity of the Nile Valley civilisation.

McIntyre is also the administrator of the Facebook group Africa: Ancient Kemet & Nubia connection group. She creates succinct infographics about Kemet’s Africanity, and writes at length about Kemet on Quora.

McIntyre spoke with me by Skype from her home on February 22, 2018. We discussed:

  • Why pop culture such as the massively successful Black Panther movie won’t be enough to stop the academy from Whitewashing Kemet
  • The major reason why so many Westerners cling to the belief that Ancient Egypt was non-African, despite the wide-ranging evidence that proves them wrong
  • The savage attacks that Eurocentrists mount against even White academics who simply discuss the facts
  • The Whitewashing of Tutankhamun by National Geographic, and which iconic sculpture from Ancient Kemet is actually a Eurocentric fake

Along the way, we discussed a range of topics, some of which don’t get explained in our conversation. So, a few notes:

  • The name Kemet means “the black land” as in its rich soil, but also, according to Black Athena author Martin Bernal in an interview with me from years ago, “land of Black people.” The name “Egypt” is an English rendering of Aigyptos, a Greek corruption of the ancient Kemetic name “Het-Ka-Ptah.”
  • Cheikh Anta Diop was a Senegalese nuclear physicist and Egyptologist, author of many works including the classic The African Origin of Civilisation: Myth Or Reality?
  • The White Crown is the name given to the gourd-like crown of southern Egypt
  • Zawi Hawass is an Arab Egyptologist and former Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs in the Arab Republic of Egypt
  • Finally, while discussing the cultural significance of Black Panther, I quoted what it had earned the day our discussion. As of March 18, 2018, the day I’m recording this episode, Black Panther had earned $1.18 billion globally.
  • The fictional Wakandan panther god Bast is the actual ancient feline goddess Bast, Baset, or Bastet from Ancient Kemet, and the Wakandan script seems mostly based on Tifinagh, an ancient Berber script spread over Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Libya, and Algeria.

Deidra Ramsey McIntyre’s Quora Articles on Kemet

Nefertiti bust a forgery

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Mar 15, 2018

Many Canadians, Indigenous and settler alike, were furious to learn the back-to-back verdicts in two murder cases. Juries declared Gerald Stanley not guilty of killing 22-year-old Colten Boushie, and Raymond Courmier not guilty of killing 14-year-old Tina Fontaine. The cases exposed how our colonial justice system makes it easy to exclude Indigenous citizens from juries and how rarely families can expect those who kill their loved ones to go to prison.

Some people protested in the streets. Some people protested with their art. Some people wept for the dead and for the future of their children. And some people did all three.

One such man is Rex Smallboy, the former leader of War Party, one of the country’s most successful hip hop bands ever. The motivational speaker and award-winning artist from Alberta’s Maskwacis Cree reserve released the song “Hey They Killing Us” immediately after the jury freed Tina Fontaine’s killer. You’ll hear it later in this show in which Smallboy discusses:

  • The level of anxiety he faces at the thought of his children simply going out of the house
  • The angry reactions some settlers, including a friend, gave him for discussing the racism that Indigenous Canadians experience daily
  • His fears that Colten Boushie and Tina Fontaine will be forgotten
  • What he wants more than anything else
  • The one place in Canada he’s found where Indigenous and settler Canadians live together with respect and kindness, and what it’s going to take to fix the country

Rex Smallboy spoke with me by Skype on March 6, 2018. During our discussion he referred to Hobbema, the former settler name for the Maskwacis Cree reserve 70 km south of Edmonton.

 

Jury says Tina Fontaine’s killer can walk free

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Mar 5, 2018

Marvel’s Black Panther is a global sensation. As of Saturday, March 3, 2018, only two weeks and two days into its release, the Ryan Coogler/Joe Robert Cole film has grossed $US898 million worldwide. Within its first week it had outgrossed what DC’s Justice League took three months to earn, and the entire US runs of Ant-Man, Doctor Strange, The Incredible Hulk, the first Captain America, and the first two Thor films. It had the fifth-highest opening of all time and the third-highest four-day opening ever.

Of course, money isn’t everything, but the astonishing success of a film that is 100% obviously Africentric, starring African characters played by African actors, written by two African writers and directed by an African director, is game-changing. It negates in sky-writing every Hollywood executive who ever claimed that US-made movies about and by Africans could not make money outside the US.

And this is within the same 12-month period in which the African-made, Africentric film Get Out, shot on a budget of a paltry $4.5 million, earned a quarter of a billion dollars globally.

We’ve all seen the photos of African-Americans and African-Canadians wearing gorgeous African clothing to watch the premiere of the movie, and it’s clear that the film is inspiring generations of young and older global Africans the way that Star Wars inspired filmmakers and fans worldwide.

There are countless articles and podcasts and interviews about Black Panther, and some people have posted Wakanda curricula online—in fact, mine will be online at ministerfaust.com next week. And obviously the film has its detractors, too.

To discuss the film I asked a wide range of global African writers, filmmakers, academics, and political organisers to tell me their own experience of the film, its characters, its social significance, and its likely impact on Africentric filmmaking. On today’s episode of MF GALAXY, you’ll hear:

  • Zig Zag Claybourne, author of The Brothers Jetstream
  • Science fiction short story writer K. Ceres Wright,
  • DeWayne Copeland, co-creator and producer of the superhero web-series CV Nation
  • Founder and editor in chief of Black Girl Magic literary magazine Kenesha Williams
  • Buk Arop, president of the South Sudan Development Foundation
  • Science fiction novelist and horror filmmaker Jeff Carroll,
  • Greg Tate, musician, producer, culture commentator, and author of Everything But the Burden: What White People are Taking from Black Culture
  • Elysium author Jennifer Marie Brissett
  • Lateef Martin, founder and creative director of Miscellaneum Studios
  • The president of the Council of Canadians of African and Caribbean Heritage in Edmonton, Siyani Nsaliwa
  • Carole McDonnell, author of Wind Follower
  • Editor of Black and Brown Planets: The Politics of Race in Science Fiction, Isiah Lavender III
  • K. Tempest Bradford, science fiction author, media critic, and podcaster of Originality
  • Photographer, educator, and writer Jean-Sebastien Boncy
  • Culture commentator Robert Monroe, Jr., and
  • Poet, playwright, dramatist, and post-colonial theorist Mukonzki wa Musyoki

And for today’s episode, like last week’s show, I’m offering the bonus content for free. Find part 2 of today’s episode right now at patreon.com/mfgalaxy.

A reminder that this show is 100% spoilers.

Janelle Monae - “Django Jane”

Zacari + Babes Wodumo - “Redemption”

Ghanaian Architect David Adjaye

African-American Artist David Hammons

Ethiopian Artist Julie Mehretu

 

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