Meanwhile, in independent Kenya, in 2021, the @MuseumSociety are journeying back in time, hosting an ex-colonial administrator for drinks and dinner, to reminisce about the "colourful lives of young Crown servants". Colourful isn't the word I'd use for imperial violence, but OK.
And of course it's happening in Karen, the de-facto headquarters of colonial nostalgia in Kenya, (still) named after the de-facto Baroness of colonial nostalgia, Karen Blixen.
How about a follow-up event, where we host one of the thousands of Kenyans tortured by the (still-present) British forces, and reminisce about what it was like being on the receiving end of the 'colourful antics of young Crown servants'?…
An example of some of the 'colourful antics' at that time were Operation Legacy, where young Crown servants burned 8,800 files that could embarrass the British government - files that detailed torture methods used on Kenyans. Can we reminisce about that?…

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More from @jimchuchu

23 Nov
The irritating thing about the settler-expat-KC community in Kenya is that they mistake the silence of Kenyans with a Forgetting or an Unseeing. Most Kenyans speak varying quantities of English, Kiswahili and vernaculars, but we're all very, very fluent in SILENCE.
Silence is the language of a people for whom truth and violence were too-often intertwined. Our parents taught us to shut up, and our State reinforces that lesson every day. Silence is our third national language. This does NOT mean Kenyans do not see, or do not know.
We know, for instance, that the settler-expat-KC community thinks Kenya was better off under British rule. We see you point derisively at our infrastructure/ politics/ economy and mutter about how much more orderly and 'civilized' things were 'before the locals took over'.
Read 15 tweets
18 Jun
It's common practice amongst the couchsurfing-tourist-expat bunch to make up exotic 'facts' after 3 days of research in order to raise money from venture capital firms overseas for half-baked entrepreneurial adventures in Africa, but...
...saying that "Kenya, unlike other countries, doesn’t have a strong food culture" is insulting, reductive and untrue. Congratulations to Kune for raising 1M, but are these patronising lies necessary?…
A reminder of what this story is really about:…
Read 4 tweets
19 Jan 19
4 days, 25,000+ signatures in 2 petitions, 3 non-apologies and the @NYTimes are steadfast in their dubious position, the @FCAEA in their self-preserving silence, and @kimidefreytas in deleting her problematic posts from the past to solidify her victim position in all this.
Defenders of @kimidefreytas have told us again and again that Kimiko did not choose the photo. Kimiko is not to blame. Yet yesterday this photo she posted on her Facebook came to light. (I have censored it - there are uncensored versions on Twitter if you must see the photo).
It is a photo of another dead African - a victim of Ebola: artless, stark. In this instance, she DID choose the photo. The post IS the photo. There is no photo editor intervening here. There is no institutional editorial policy at work here. Just an unbridled Kimiko.
Read 17 tweets
18 Jan 19
It strikes me that @nytimes's paternalistic, condescending tone around the #RiversideAttack issue is in stark contrast to the pithy, earnest "Subscribe for $1" messaging they project elsewhere.
To help them align their messaging, here's some design ideas for their next ad campaigns?
Everything it takes.
Read 7 tweets
17 Jan 19
Let me tell y'all a relatively harmless story about the first time I encountered the power of foreign media to permanently alter an African story.
In 2009 (centuries ago, lol), as part of Just A Band, we put out this video that featured Makmende, who until that point had been an abstract, Kenyan character with hazy origins.
And there was this incredible reaction. And then CNN came to visit us for an interview. They asked us where Makmende came from, and we told them the truth: we didn't know, he had always kinda existed in the abstract hive-mind that is the Kenyan neighborhood playground.
Read 10 tweets
16 Jan 19
Lastly, I know that it is fashionable to dismiss #KOT as a gang of marauding armchair-activists, but it's important to look at the Kenyan context a little more carefully. Kenya is not a society of people who are used to being listened to, or cared for.
There isn't really a history of any Kenyan institutions openly caring for Kenyans. All the way from the government, the police force, the health-care system, corporates, insurance, public it.
To paraphrase @samirasawlani : "Some countries keep having their hearts broken." That's Kenya. 😢
Read 8 tweets

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