Images of Africa in the western media are often characterised by famine and conflict. The discussion of poverty in African countries often overlooks the facts of everyday life. A new book The Ringtone and the Drumsets out to change this. Its author, an expert on development policy, presents the fast-changing politics and culture in three of the world’s poorest and least visited countries – Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau and Burkina Faso.
Interview: Mark Weston, author, The Ringtone and the Drum
Why did you decide to travel around three of the world’s poorest countries?
I’ve worked in international development for quite a long time now, trying to work out what’s gone wrong in the world’s poorest countries. What can be done to help improve the lives of people living there? But although I’d spent time in Africa before, and in Asia on short trips, I felt as that I hadn’t really got under the skin of what it’s like to live in poverty. I wanted to find out what the people who lived in the world’s poorest countries talk about. What do they do every day? How are they adjusting to the onrush of modernity and globalisation that’s transforming so much of the developing world?
More than 90 per cent of the lion population has disappeared from Africa over the past 50 years, according to some estimates. A film to be shown on the National Geographic channel in France charts the story of one family of lions. RFI spoke to the makers of The Last Lions about their journey into the world of one of the most ferocious predators known to man…
This year’s Paris Games Week powers up on Friday with more than 150,000 gaming geeks expected to pass through the doors of the city’s Parc des expositions. French video game fans will get an exclusive look at the new Playstation Vita handheld console, as well as new titles including Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Assassin’s Creed Revelations and Saint’s Row The Third.
Promoting the interests of Commonwealth countries was the primary focus of Commonwealth chief Kamalesh Sharma‘s meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Wednesday night, ahead of next week’s G20 finance ministers meeting.
Interview: Kamalesh Sharma, Secretary General, Commonwealth
Sharma represents 54 countries across the world, including a number from Africa. The Commonwealth recently observed elections in Zambia and has a team in place for this weekend’s elections in Cameroon. However, there are some criticisms over the Commonwealth’s approach to holding countries accountable for their human rights record.
His work mainly concerns international news and politics, especially Africa and France. He also covers arts, culture, economics, the environment, music, sports and technology. He has skills in multimedia production with a high level of expertise in audio editing, graphics, video and web technologies. His work has been heard on international radio stations, including American Public Media, Radio Netherlands and Deutsche Welle.
Before working as a journalist he spent time in commercial and community radio in the United Kingdom. He developed The Hillz FM community radio station and helped it to secure a full-time FM license.
Nouvelle Vague hits the concert circuit once again to promote their new album, Couleurs sur Paris, with multi-talented singer Liset Alea. Their fourth studio album includes offerings en français such as Putain, Putain a 1983 song originally by TC Matic.
Interview: Liset Alea and Olivier Libaux
After winning DJ Mag’s Best Album award this week for Black Sands, Bonobo performed at Le Plan in Ris Orangis on Thursday night. Alongside vocalist Andreya Triana and a barrage of other musicians, Simon Green, AKA Bonobo, captivated French fans with a mix of down-tempo house, atmospheric soundscapes and more bassline heavy electronica.
Interview: Bonobo AKA Simon Green
This week’s Sound Kitchen visits the MuseoGames exhibition at the Arts et Metiers museum in Paris to play video games and find out why it’s just been extended until December. Rachel Khoo, a food creative, and author of Pâtes à tartiner shows us how to make lemon curd. Our regular quiz taxes your ears with another mystery sound. And we have dance music from Bonobo, Alltrics and Fenech Soler.
Radio Magazine: The Sound Kitchen
Britain’s Glastonbury festival kicked off this week, arguably Europe’s most famous and most celebrated music festival. The area of farmland in Somerset, south-west England is hosting a jam-packed weekend of music, arts and culture.
The festival’s hippy ethos brings together people from all walks of life, offering what it describes as a beacon of hope and aspiration. This year it also celebrates a very special anniversary.
Presenter: Richard Walker