International

AFRICA NOW: Tanzania Battles Dynamite Fishermen

Waters in Tanzania are beginning to rumble as country officials demand the end of illegal dynamite fishing, despite support from some residents.

The fisherman toss up to 50 bombs a day into the coral reefs in particular areas like the port city of Dar Es Salaam, netting fishermen up to 100 fish a round and lots of money. However, the shock wave from the blasts also destroys the air bladders in every other living creature within a 5 to 20 meter radius.

Despite the environmental harm and physical danger, some natives claim the practice is necessary.

“It’s dangerous,” said Omari Mussa, a native Tanzanian who until recently made his living as a fisherman, with a missing finger from a bomb accident to show for it, German news organization DW Akademie reported. “Nevertheless, everybody here used this technique. Fishing with the usual methods is hardly worthwhile.”

Boston Museum Displays Ancient Nubian Jewelry

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston boasts the most comprehensive collection of Nubian jewelry and adornments outside of Khartoum. In “Gold and the Gods: Jewels of Ancient Nubia,” an exhibit showing through Jan. 8, visitors can view these works up close.

Stemming from a joint excavation of Kurshite royal cemeteries carried out with Harvard University between 1913 and 1932, the 95-piece display highlights ancient figures of worship, romance and magic, all created out of gold, a sacred substance associated in both Egypt and Nubia (which some scholars suggests means gold) with the powerful sun god, Amen-Re.

A neighbor to Egypt in what is present-day Sudan, Nubia’s history can be coherently traced all the way back to 2000 B.C. onward.

With over two millennia under their belt, the region is still noted for their developed specific sets of aesthetics and fine craftsmanship, including jewelry, which was more often than not used to express opulence, status, resurrection, spirits and protection.

More Black Americans Tracing Ancestry

With the emergence of less expensive, intrinsic DNA techniques, more African-Americans are retracing historical roots.

Using U.S.-based companies such as Ancestry.com and Family Tree DNA, many black Americans are now reconnecting themselves to Ghana, Joy News reported.

“When you order your DNA kits … they see in your DNA kits, your origins,” Joy News’ Richard Kwadwo Nyarko who has been exploring the phenomenon. “You just swab the inner part of your mouth with a cotton bud and then put it in an envelope and send it back to their company, they analyze your DNA. They are able to tell you your ethnicity, the breakdown of your family tree and what percentage of Africa is in you, through your DNA.”

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Lauren M. Poteat

Lauren Poteat is a versatile writer with a strong background in communications and media experience with an additional background in education and development.

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