Africa







Mental Floss has a nice rundown of supernatural monstrosities of traditional African folklore, including ghost apes, flying reptiles, and, at right, the one-eyed Popobawa bat and airborne vampiric pest the Adze: The…





According to the UK’s Mirror News, a couple on safari picked up an unwanted hitchhiker: a 16 foot-long rock python. The car’s owner flipped the hood and waited for it to exit…


Imagine life in a remote town comprised entirely of “witches.” The BBC explains: When misfortune hits a village, there is a tendency in some countries to suspect a “witch” of casting a…





From Maximilian Forte of Zero Anthropology, A photo and text essay examining the intersection of western hegemony and humanitarianism. Helpless, pleading, wanting, needing, small, weak, staring at you, black–this is the anti-bogeyman…



No one knows what creates the thousands of fairy circles dotting southern Africa, but we now know that after mysteriously springing up, they live for approximately 41 years. Via ScienceNOW: Tens of…




Via Warscapes, Dinaw Mengestu explains that the viral video’s appeal is that “the real star of Kony 2012 isn’t Joseph Kony, it’s us”: Kony 2012 is the most successful example of the…


Matador Network on the “worst attempts at helping others since colonialism”. There’s the inexplicable — entrepreneur Jason Sadler’s 1 Million T-Shirts campaign, which involved producing and shipping a million t-shirts for donation…


RecolonizationPost-Oscars, a look at how Western celebrities have projected their egos across vast portions of the world. Created by Mother Jones‘s Dave Gilson:

Oversized shades have replaced pith helmets, but the new scramble for Africa has its share of adventurers, would-be saviors, and even turf battles. As Madonna’s publicist explains, “She’s focusing on Malawi. South Africa is Oprah’s territory.”

The map takes a lighter look at the sometimes serious, sometimes silly business of celebrity altruism. For more on how Africa became the hottest continent for A-list do-gooders like Bono and Brangelina, see here. And if you’re looking for a more sober approach, check out our recent package on human rights.

Click on a country to learn which celebrity has claimed it, and how …


El Shabbab, the fundamentalist Islamic insurgency group fighting to control southern Somalia, reject most things Western and/or modern, but ironically have embraced Twitter, garnering thousands of followers. In addition to straightforward updates…