Living and Learning
Chez Alpha Books / October 15, 2019
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College Club Member Gains Visa to Study at University of Cincinnati
Bravo! A member of the College Club program at Chez Alpha Books has just obtained his visa to study in the Carl H. Lindner Business Program at the University of Cincinnati. Committed, focused and open to guidance he worked hard over the last few months to prepare for this moment. Even though he will begin in an English foundation program, he studied English at Chez Alpha Books, researched everything he needed to know about the academic program he would follow and was open to all cross cultural guidance. With a family member in Cincinnati to support him, we know he will do well. As he started his journey, we whispered-Come Back! Starting today, we will work with him on a plan for return.

The College Club at Chez Alpha Books is a comprehensive college search program designed to take support students in their parents in their university search taking into account the social, cultural and financial needs of each student. We don't seek only rank and name, but focus on connecting students to institutions worldwide, big or small where they will be supported throughout their higher education experience.
Pourquoi aucun des héros ne me ressemblent dans ces histoires ?


par Ophelie Boudimbou | Fév 27, 2019

Je ne sais pas si la phrase d’un de vos enfants, d’un de vos élèves vous a déjà révolté, épouvanté et attristé en même temps comme celle-ci l’a fait pour moi, parce qu’elle était vraie et que je n’en avais jamais eu conscience jusqu’alors. Et pourtant des livres j’en ai lu et des lignes j’en ai écrit! Alors qui suis-je et qu’est-ce que nous faisons
là ?

Je m’appelle Ophélie, et ce que vous (mère, parent, enseignant et autres curieux) et moi faisons ici, c’est découvrir et – je l’espère – répondre ensemble, main dans la main à un problème  d’invisibilisation  passé à la trappe depuis des années, des décennies, au bas mot. Une problématique qui m’a frappée de plein fouet alors que je gardais mes petits cousins comme tous les mercredis et que j’ai réalisé qu’effectivement, entre les stéréotypes, le manque de diversité et de variété, les personnages d’origine afro-descendantes étaient clairement sous-représentés dans la littérature pour enfant. J’aurais voulu leur présenter un livre avec des héros africains authentiques, des anecdotes du quotidien, des récits de l’Histoire et de la Culture identitaire africaine mais cela manquait cruellement.

Et puis une phrase de Toni Morrison m’est revenue en tête :  « s’il y a un livre que tu veux lire mais qui n’a pas encore été écrit, tu dois l’écrire » . Et cela a résonné en moi comme une vérité, une mission, un feu sacré qui animait mes tripes et coulait dans mes veines : pour mes enfants à venir, mes cadets et cadettes, mes neveux et nièces, pour tous les enfants du monde, pour que tout le monde puisse en apprendre plus – et mieux ! – sur le continent que l’on surnomme encore « le berceau de la Vie » et qui est à mes yeux « le berceau de la culture », j’allais écrire des livres.

Essential Reading for Resisting Erasure: Women Writing Africa
African women have played important roles in both the history and intellectual life of the continent, but their contributions have been erased in a history written largely by and about men. Women Writing Africa is essential reading for anyone interested in recovering this history, writes Athambile Masola (South Africa &Rhodes University, 2010).

“Most people have a problem with the idea that black women write.” These are the words of writer and activist Lauretta Ngcobo , reflecting on the legacy of black women writers in South Africa. Ngcobo’s words capture the cultural imagination of women in Africa’s public discourse. The tradition of erasure can be seen as early as 1937 in a book titled Gold Coast Men of Affairs, written by Magnus Sampson. Researcher Audrey Gadzekpo describes this text as “an important and well-cited source of early Gold Coast socio-political history”. The text does not include the names of the women who participated in the nationalist history of the region. There are numerous examples of texts which erase the writing and thinking of women as though they were passive observers of the politics of their times. For more recent examples, one only needs to look Mcebisi Ndletyana’s 2008 book African Intellectuals in 19th and early 20th Century: South Africa and Bongani Ngqulunga’s 2017 biography on Pixley kaSeme. Both works ignore the women who were the contemporaries of the men they write about.
STAMPED FROM THE BEGINNING: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America - The racism of good intentions: Book review by b y Carlos Lozada
Here are some people you may not usually think of as racists: Abraham Lincoln. Frederick Douglass. Susan B. Anthony. W.E.B. Du Bois. Harriet Beecher Stowe. Barack Obama.

Theirs is not the racism of hate, of biological determinism, of segregation. It is, in Ibram X. Kendi’s telling, the unending and unwitting racism of the well-meaning.
“So many prominent Americans, many of whom we celebrate for their progressive ideas and activism, many of whom had very good intentions, subscribed to assimilationist thinking that has also served up racist beliefs about Black inferiority,” Kendi writes. They did so by promoting freedom but forgetting equality; by placing the burden of combating racism on black shoulders, not white ones; by implicitly accepting notions of inferiority, no matter how righteous their indignation; by conflating anti-racist claims and racist fears in an effort to claim a moralizing middle ground.

“So many prominent Americans, many of whom we celebrate for their progressive ideas and activism, many of whom had very good intentions, subscribed to assimilationist thinking that has also served up racist beliefs about Black inferiority,” Kendi writes. They did so by promoting freedom but forgetting equality; by placing the burden of combating racism on black shoulders, not white ones; by implicitly accepting notions of inferiority, no matter how righteous their indignation; by conflating anti-racist claims and racist fears in an effort to claim a moralizing middle Continue reading...
Books for Young Readers
Rainy days in Dakar are best when reading about that special kind of Grandma Love with these four children’s books. We are excited to have GRANDMA’S PURSE join our shelves. In this story, when Grandma Mimi comes to visit, she always brings warm hugs, sweet treats…and her purse. You never know what she’ll have in there–fancy jewelry, tokens from around the world, or something special just for her granddaughter. It might look like a normal bag from the outside, but Mimi and her granddaughter know that it’s pure magic! The magic of grandparents is undeniable, and this book is an excellent treat for grandkids to share with their own grandmas and grandpas, or the other way around.”

In SITTI’S SECRET, on a trip halfway around the world, young Mona comes to love her grandmother as she learns about the daily life of the elderly Palestinian Arab woman. When she returns home, Mona writes a letter to the president, in which she describes her grandmother and asks for peace. The poetic, rich language is dotted with imagery that is often picked up in the illustrations.

Amalia’s best friend Martha is moving away, and Amalia is feeling sad and angry. And yet, even when life seems unfair, the loving, wise words of Amalia’s abuelita have a way of making everything a little bit brighter. In LOVE AMALIA, Amalia finds great comfort in times shared with her grandmother: cooking, listening to stories and music, learning, and looking through her treasured box of family cards.
In this adorable story GRANDMA’S LIST with beautiful illustrations, Fatima is determined to save the day. She wants to help Grandma with her to-do list so that everyone will realize that she is a big girl now! But the errands don’t go exactly as expected and the reader is left asking - Fatima, what have you done? Read with us!
Education Updates
Open the door to a new opportunity, new city, and new friends. Universities in the US, UK, Canada and many other regions of the world normally offer 2 and even 3 intakes. If you missed September then contact THE COLLEGE CLUB at Chez Alpha Books to discuss January 2020 or May 2020 intakes. Whatsapp 775760784 or call 338206359 or email: maizie@chezalphabks.com
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