Alice Walker to explore Biko ties

first_imgProf Alice Walker, who’s currently in SouthAfrica to deliver the annual Steve BikoMemorial Lecture, is best known for heraward-winning novel The Colour Purple.(Image: Nicky Rehbock) Portraits of individuals who have deliveredpast lectures hang in hall of fame at theSteve Biko Foundation in Johannesburg.Artworks of former presidents NelsonMandela and Thabo Mbeki are amongthem.(Image: Janine Erasmus) MEDIA CONTACTS • Steve Biko Foundation +27 11 403 0310RELATED ARTICLES• Biko’s legacy lives on • Canada, asylum and the sprinkler salesman• Food security starts at home • South African literatureNicky RehbockProf Alice Walker has arrived in South Africa to deliver the 11th annual lecture honouring the late Stephen Bantu Biko, an anti-apartheid activist and leader who founded the Black Consciousness Movement.Walker, best known for her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Colour Purple, was invited to the country by the Steve Biko Foundation, which was set up in his memory. Biko died while in police custody on 12 September 1977.“The Steve Biko Foundation is honoured to be hosting Professor Alice Walker on her first visit to South Africa. In short, she embodies everything that Bantu Stephen Biko stood for during his life,” said Nkosinathi Biko, CEO of the foundation, and son of Stephen.This will be the first time the lecture is delivered by someone from outside Africa, and only the second time it’s been delivered by a woman – the first being Dr Mamphela Ramphele, an internationally respected South African activist, academic, author, businesswoman and medical doctor. Ramphele and Biko had two children, although he was married to someone else at the time.“It’s because of Professor Walker’s eloquent articulation of the link between identity, activism and social change that the foundation asked her to deliver the Steve Biko Memorial Lecture this year,” said the younger Biko.The lecture will take place at the University of Cape Town on 9 September 2010 and is titled Coming to see you since I was five years old: An American Poet’s Connection to the South African soul.According to the foundation, the Steve Biko Memorial Lecture was initiated to examine the relationship between individuals and society, to explore triumphs over inequality, and to speak to challenges and opportunities facing people of African descent.Ties that bindWhen asked at a recent press conference what South Africans can expect from the lecture, Walker said: “You perhaps know my poem, Expect Nothing – Live Frugally on Surprise. I prefer to be spontaneous and live in the moment.”Although this response is cryptic, the author did disclose that she would “address issues of my life and how Steve Biko and I are definitely sister and brother in our love for people”.She added, “For me this journey is an exploration of how close I feel to Steve Biko in his legacy of caring.”Walker explained that her link with Biko is based on a “determination to always tell the truth” and the fact that both lived during times of intense political turmoil in the mid-1960s and 1970s.“Biko lived in dangerous places – and so did I. In the 1960s I was living in Mississippi state, after graduating from college in New York city, and I was trying to bring literacy to people who had little or none. There were fire-bombings, and people were lynched and killed. It was bloody and dangerous in the way that South Africans lived for a very long time during apartheid.“I will talk about the legacy of Steve Biko and connect our struggles, the paths we’ve crossed and the desire for freedom and growth.“It boils down to humanity – Biko had a joy of life. It’s my love, respect and admiration for Stephen Biko that drew me here to South Africa.”At the conference a member of the press asked Walker how it felt to be the first non-African to deliver the lecture. “I take the long view in that there are no non-Africans,” she said.“Everyone has been inspired by his life over the decades. There are places where I feel called to because of sincere work, and I am honoured to go wherever that may be.“I love Biko’s fearlessness. He was someone with such integrity – he was a whole being. He fought for his existence with the very last of his energy.“In this love of people and hope for humanity’s advancement we must acknowledge we have it all within us – it’s just a matter of how we use it,” she added.Warrior for peaceWalker is also a poet, short-story writer, essayist, anthologist, teacher, editor, publisher and activist, with a deep interest in race and gender. She was born in 1944 in Georgia, US.She’s a self-described “daughter of rural peasantry”, growing up in the American south in the wake of the Great Depression of the 1930s.After completing high school in 1961 she became involved in the civil rights movement, taking depositions from black Americans who had been evicted from their homes for attempting to register to vote.Published in 1982, The Colour Purple focuses on the struggle of black American women in rural Georgia in the first half of the 20th century, particularly the life of Celie, who writes a series of unburdening letters to God after being repeatedly raped and beaten by her father.The book became a bestseller and was soon made into a critically acclaimed film directed by Steven Spielberg. The stellar cast included Oprah Winfrey as well as Hollywood greats like Danny Glover and Whoopi Goldberg. In 2005 it was adapted into a Broadway musical play.The Colour Purple won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1983, making Walker the first black American woman to receive such an honour.Her writings have been have been translated into more than 24 languages and her books have sold over 10-million copies.last_img read more

Ohio’s National Agriscience Fair results

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ohio also had a solid showing in the National Agriscience Fair.Holly Schmenk, Patrick Henry, was first place in Food Products and Processing Systems Division 1.Kolbie Brandenburg and Abigail Fulton, Felicity-Franklin, were second in Animal Systems Division 3.Grace Lach, Bloom Carroll, was third in Plant Systems Division 1Jarrett Crowthers and Jenna Jackels, Edgewood-Butler Tech, were third in Plant Systems Division 3Rebecca Helt, Global Impact STEM Academy of Ohio FFA Association, was third in Social Systems Division 2.last_img read more

Is Our ‘Netflix and Chill’ Culture Actually Making It Harder to Relax?

first_imgBrad is the editor overseeing contributed content at He previously worked as an editor at PayPal and Crunchbase. You can reach him at brad at Related Posts Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Follow the Puck While streaming has taken off — with more than 60 percent of young Americans using streaming services as their primary TV venue — it’s also invaded our bedrooms. A 2018 Tuck survey of 1,300 Americans found that more than 85 percent of us watch streaming TV in bed, with 70 percent of them falling asleep to the soothing sounds of shows like “Sons of Anarchy.”More than a third of those surveyed said streaming TV in bed made them get less sleep. That might explain one of the reasons Americans aren’t getting enough sleep. While experts recommend that adults get a minimum of seven hours of shut-eye per night, Gallup found that Americans average only 6.8 hours. A whopping 40 percent didn’t even snag six hours. That means adults in the U.S. are operating in a constant fog of sleep deprivation.Our ubiquitous technology has seemingly made everything, from work to entertainment, easier on us — everything, that is, except sleep. How will our reliance on technology impact our ability to recharge?How Tech Can Make Us DullerIn a world where the nature of work is constantly changing and automating, staying sharp is crucial. But even one night of sleep deprivation can slow our reaction times. In fact, a Stanford University study from nearly 20 years ago found that a lack of sleep can impair a person’s reaction time as much as alcohol can. So why do we continue to forfeit sleep, two decades later?We’re biting off our nose to spite our face. Americans now work more hours than people from any other industrialized nation. Those hit hardest are white-collar workers, or those who tend to have nonexempt jobs that are harder to track. These roles, which are intended to help design the automated, tech-savvy future, are widely viewed as mentally draining — sitting in front of a computer all day wipes people out.As a result, these are often the very people who climb into bed to binge a few mindless episodes — they’re mentally tapped out and unable to consider doing something more intensive. But falling asleep in front of the TV then leaves them exhausted the next day, repeating the cycle. The irony? These jobs are frequently the ones tasked with innovation, but the workers who hold them are too tired to make their firms competitive.When just the blue light emitting from TVs, tablets, and smartphones harms the quality of our sleep, it becomes apparent that falling asleep during our streaming sessions is simply extending the exhaustion of sitting in front of a computer during our waking hours, dragging it into our sleep.Is Detox the Only Way Back to Sanity?Social media breaks, or “social media detox,” have become common ways for people to recalibrate their sense of reality and restore their own values. Is the solution here to forgo Netflix, Hulu, Roku, Amazon Prime, and other streaming services so we can get back to our normally functioning brains?The question may be better phrased as “Why would we want to?” If streaming services like Netflix et al. represent the positive outcomes of our attempts to utilize technology while pushing our industries forward, we shouldn’t abandon them wholesale in the interest of more sleep. That assigns negative intent to neutral technology, and it takes a pretty dim view of the human capacity for self-control.Instead, we should look for ways to retrain our brains — much like we train our algorithms — to respond differently to the stimuli. Here are a few ways we can do that.Kick TV out of the bedroom. While giving up streaming in bed may sound pretty “unsexy,” that’s not what the bedroom was designed for — and you’re holding yourself back by letting screen time creep into your sleep time. By not bringing a TV into the room, you can squelch the temptation. If tablets, laptops, or smartphones are your nemeses, make nighttime charging time and set them aside. What you gain in 25 minutes of viewing you probably lose in an hour of  productivity and focus the next day — is it worth it?Set limits. We’ve all been guilty of saying things like “I need to read more” or “I never can find time for my hobbies.” We do have time; we just often choose to spend it on things like streaming old episodes of “The Office.” These may serve as comforts after a long, exhausting day, but doing that every day can result in complacency. Reserve binges to really trying days, and force yourself to log off after a certain period of time on other days. If you make yourself turn off Netflix at 9 p.m., you gain an hour to read before you sleep, which you’ll find more energizing in the long run.Consider the diminishing returns. If you’re a logical, linear thinker — and thus attracted to technology — one way to short-circuit your reliance on technology is to assess the long-term impact. Is your third go-around of “Friends” teaching you new things? It might be, but it might not. If you feel you’re growing stagnant or not progressing the way you feel you should be, cut the cord on the programs that result in diminishing returns. If they’re not giving you an injection of inspiration or peace of mind, replace them with something that will.A constant fog of sleep deprivation isn’t good for us — or our companies. By allowing technology to take over our work, our entertainment, and our sleep, we’ve given up control of every human frontier. Prioritizing our ability to recharge may just be the key to staying innovative. Brad AndersonEditor In Chief at ReadWrite What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Tags:#innovation#Netflix#sleep#streaming#TV Trends Driving the Loyalty Marketing Industrylast_img read more

Kalpana Dash, Odisha’s first woman mountaineer, dead

first_imgChief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday condoled the demise of Kalpana Dash, Odisha’s first woman mountaineer, saying it would inspire generations of young women in the State.Kalpana (50) died after scaling the Mount Everest on Thursday. She had complained breathlessness while descending from the Everest peak. She died near Balcony area.Kalpana had left for Everest on April 23. She along with Kanchimaya Tamang of Nepal and Liamu Mank of China had conquered the Mt. Everest. Her family members were informed about her death through Whatsapp message. The body of the mountaineer was still in the balcony area. Relatives of Kalpana would travel to Nepal to receive her body.The woman mountaineer from Odisha had first scaled Mt Everest in 2008. During her decade and half-old career, she had trekked many mountains conquering peaks in Europe, America and Australia, besides India.“I am saddened to learn about the demise of Kalpana Dash while descending from Mt. Everest. Her legacy in mountaineering will inspire generations of young women in the State,” said Mr Patnaik expressing condolences to the bereaved family.last_img read more