African cultural heritage and digitisation

The African continent is rich with diverse cultures, indigenous knowledge systems, and technologies. Our culture involves our social behaviour and norms, our languages, knowledge, beliefs, traditions, arts, capacities, and habits.
Over decades, we have seen the deliberate alienation and marginalization of African cultural values and traditions by the designs of colonialism and apartheid, which have resulted in the misrepresentation and disorientation of some of the most fundamental aspects of our African culture. In an era of rapidly changing technologies digital solutions become critical for the application of holistic and knowledge-based approaches to societal problems.

In this conversation, we speak to Russel Hlongwane in an effort to identify the key touchpoints we can engage with in reclaiming and restoring our history and cultural heritage; finding pathways to expand our reach and digital presence, and preserving Africa's rich cultural heritage.

Russel Hlongwane is a cultural producer based between Cape Town and Durban, South Africa. His work is located at the intersection of Heritage/Modernity and Culture/Tradition as they apply to black life on the continent and the diaspora. His said practice includes cultural research, film, creative producing, design theory, curatorship, writing and performance – often taking the form of installation.
He has curated exhibitions and art platforms locally and abroad, and his artistic work has been shown extensively across Europe and Africa. His experimental film, Ifu Elimnyama: The Dark Cloud’ received the Jury Prize (2019) at the Sharjah Film Platform.
28 Apr 2023 English South Africa Society & Culture · Religion & Spirituality

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