2.30-4.30: Workshop-Phase 2

Occidentalization and Development: What are the Challenges for Africa?

Dora Sandrine Koungoyo Ndedi (activist with Corasol and founder of the magazine « Stimme », Berlin), Péguy Takou (Afrique-Europe-Interact) & Ekanga Ekanga Claude Wilfried (author, University of Frankfurt)
Venue: May Ayim // FR (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

The West still plays an important role in how the development of Africa is taking place. The Western states want to keep this important role in the exploitation of Africa forever. They push these societies into a development model that is an exact copy of the Western system. This complete occidentalization of Africa has been begun in the dark years of colonialism. It continues until today through structural adjustment programs, forms of “development aid” and the implementation of a Western government system. In our workshop we will discuss the phenomenon of occidentalization in all dimensions. We want to uncover its consequences for Africa and the world by showing how occidentalization is connected to African governments, civil wars, processes of acculturization, development and migration, as well as unequal economic situations. How can Africa, in its dependency of the West, profit from this occidentalization without being completely swallowed by it?

Dora Sandrine Koungoyo Ndedi is a computer specialist who lives in Potsdam. She is active with different groups in Berlin and founder of the women’s magazine Stimme. She works on the struggles and rights of women and the improvement of their living conditions in Germany and Cameroon.

Rodrigue Péguy Takou Ndie is from Cameroon. In 2013, after publishing his critical novel about youth unemployment, he fled to Germany. In 2015 he published a French book about the German colonialism in what today is Cameroon. In early 2018 his German novel about the camp life of refugees in Germany will be published. He is active with Afrique-Europe-Interact among others.

Ekanga Ekanga Claude Wilfried finished his studies in Yaoundé, Cameroon, in 2008. Since 2010 he is studying Political Science in Frankfurt. He has published a poetry collection (“Des Afriques et des vers”), writes for the Cameroonian online newspaper camersenat.info, and gives lectures on the neocolonial entanglements of the Central and West African currencies CFA franc and the African educational systems.


Escaping Climate Change – Climate-Related Flight and Migration in the International Context

Sophia Wirsching (Bread for the World) & Oscar Choque (expert on commodity markets, developments and migration flows – Saxony)
Venue: Foyer Ken Saro-Wiwa // DE (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

Climate change is not a single cause of migration, but it is a strong factor that multiplies risks due to which people are forced to leave their home countries. Generally, countries in the Global South are most affected – those that are already short of adaptation capacities. This must be changed, especially in the face of the historical responsibility of the Global North and, in connection with climate-related damages and losses, climate-related forced migration also has to be discussed more intensely. How can people who have to migrate because of environmental factors, receive legal protection? What kind of solutions can be found within the Global South and which responsibility does the Global North bear? Which role do international climate change agreements play to tackle and curb ecological crises, specifically after COP 21 in Paris?

Since 2009 Sophia Wirsching works as a speaker for migration and development for Bread for the World. In close cooperation with partner organizations, she works towards better living conditions and against human rights violations, poverty and climate change – common root causes of forced migration. She also commits herself to the task of improving migrants’ protection of human rights in transit and destination countries.

Oscar Choque is a specialist promoter for commodity markets, developments and migration flows in Saxony. He is active in Ayni Association for Resource Justice in the Environmental Centre Dresden. He works with students, teachers and other facilitators to discuss the relationship between resource consumption, raw material extraction and related human rights violations.

How migrants’ money transfers and other aids contribute to self-determined bottom-up development

Alassane Dicko, Abbas Diallo, Conny Gunßer and others (all Afrique-Europe-Interact)
Venue: Salon Lilian Masediba Ngoyi // DE–FR (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

Money transfers by migrants compose a multiple of international “development aid” and are an important economic factor for many countries of the South. To cite just one example, in 2012 the money transfers by Senegalese migrants to their families amounted to 12 Billion US-Dollar which accounted for 11.4 percent of the gross domestic income. Cutting off these revenues by repressive EU migration policies bears dramatic consequences in terms of food security, health care and education as these are the major areas for which these return transfers are used. At the same time the fact that return transfers serve as a welcomed opportunity for many African governments to plug the holes in their state budgets caused by corruption, mismanagement and neoliberal structural adjustments programs should not get out of sight. In this workshop various aspects of return transfers will be discussed on the basis of specific examples – which by the way also encompass the enormous familial pressure migrants face – all the more if they are in a emergency situation themselves.

Alassane Dicko is a trained computer scientist. In 2006 he was displaced from Ivory Coast to Mali where his parents are originally from. In Bamako he helped to build up the Malian Association for Deportees (AME). He is spokesman for the Malian section of Afrique-Europe-Interact since 2010.

Abbas Diallo come to Europe from Mali as a refugee. He is currently undergoing training in Saxony-Anhalt and is active with Afrique-Europe-Interact.

Conni Gunßer has been part of various antiracist networks for many years. At the moment, she is primarily active with Lampedusa in Hamburg, the Hamburg Refugee Council, Watch The Med Alarmphone and Afrique-Europe-Interact.

Agricultural Industry versus Small Rural Farming

Victor Nzuzi (Via Campesina Kongo) & Julianna Fehlinger (Via Campesina Austria)
Venue: Mekatilili wa Menza // DE–FR (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

Around the globe smallholder agriculture has been under pressure for a long time already. Particularly in countries of the global South, forced market openings, the withdrawal of subsidies entailed in the structural adjustment programs launched in the early 1980s by IMF, World Bank and their allies have continuously aggravated anyhow existing precarious conditions in rural areas and therefore put a limit on (self-determined) peasant development prospects. Added to this are recent, no less dramatic developments, in particular land grabbing, investment strategies for agrobusiness companies, neoliberal free trade agreements and climate change. Taking the example of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the specific meaning of these issues will be discussed in the workshop. It is also about how peasant and social movements in Europe can support small-scale battles in the global South, including with regard to land battles.

Victor Nzuzi is one of the most famous globalization critics in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He is a peanut farmer and a member of Via Campesina, mainly active in small-farmers struggles. He has a radio station of his own and is also regularly involved in film and television productions dealing with corruption, debt, climate change, migration, etc. In 2008 Victor Nzuzi participated in the Climate/Antira Camp in Hamburg and in 2011 he took part in the Bamako-Dakar Caravan, which has emerged from the transnational network Afrique-Europe-Interact.

Julianna Fehlinger is the managing director of the Austrian Association of Mountain- and Small Farms. She is an activist at AgrarAttac and Via Campesina. Since the beginning of 2014, she has been living with two women on a jointly managed farm in Upper Austria. She is also active as a farmer in the movement for food sovereignty.


Acknowledge Entanglement – Reject Development – Organise Un-development

Aram Ziai (University of Kassel and kassel postkolonial) & Daniel Bendix (glokal and University of Jena, Berlin)
Venue: Studio Frantz Fanon // DE (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

The West likes to see itself as the centre of reason, inventiveness and human rights. This has always been unveiled as hypocritical by anti-colonial critics: Speaking with Frantz Fanon, “the material wellbeing and progress of Europe have been built with the sweat and the corpses of the colonised”. This workshop introduces the colonial entanglements that form the foundation of “development” and “underdevelopment”. We then turn to the fundamental critique of development policy and aid (“post-development”) that rejects these as racist, paternalist and authoritarian. Finally, we want to discuss the alternative idea of “un-development”. It says that the economic and military power of the global North needs to be reduced and the provision of food and resources needs to be organised within the North, so that societies in the former colonised world regions can take self-determined paths.

Aram Ziai works in the Department for Development and Postcolonial Studies at the University of Kassel. He lives near Aachen, is a member of the Bundeskoordination Internationalismus (BUKO), active with kassel postkolonial, and his research focuses on Post-Development and the World Bank.

Daniel Bendix is a Fellow of the Research Group on Post-Growth Societies at the University of Jena, active with the association glokal, and works on colonial power in development policy, racism in Germany, and critique of population policy.

The Global Compact for Migration as a colonial rule on human mobility

Claudio Feliziani (Filmmaker, Berlin)
Venue: Loge Thomas Sankara // EN (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

What does it mean to create safe paths of migration which are not the selective immigration imposed by the interests of the Northern countries? How orderly are the “voluntary returns” of people in detention? In this workshop we discuss the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. It entails the recruitment of Non-Governmental and Civil Society Organizations to fabricate a “consensus of the civil society” regarding the colonial rule over migration. On top of it, the German/EU doctrine repeats its pattern: The only ones entitled to cross the borders are those deemed refugees according to the 1951 Geneva Convention, “economic migrants” must be held outside or pushed back.

Claudio Feliziani is filmmaker, activist and independent researcher. After almost 10 years of taking part in refugees’ and migrants’ self-organization in Germany, he now works on German/EU transnational border policies.

From Life at the Expense of Others to Global Solidarity: Critique of Growth, Degrowth and alternative economic patterns in the Global North

Miriam Lang (Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar, Quito), Nina Treu (Konzeptwerk Neue Ökonomie, Leipzig) & Matthias Schmelzer (Konzeptwerk Neue Ökonomie, Leipzig)
Venue: Emiliano Zapata // DE (interpreted in DE–FR–EN)

Capitalism, colonialism and ecological destruction mean that people in the global North – in rich societies – live at the expense of others. Those who have contributed least to the problems such as climate change suffer most from the consequences (devastation, extreme weather). The costs for the high standard of living of some are outsourced (externalized) in the form of exploitation, natural destruction, industrial disasters. And this is no accident: Capitalism needs continuous economic growth. But infinite growth is not possible on a finite planet. What does this mean for the discussion on causes of flight? What are alternatives for the countries of the global North, which are not based on causing destruction and flight elsewhere? Does the growth and development paradigm need to be overcome? Can suggestions such as post-growth or degrowth, which have been taken up by more and more social movements in recent years, contribute to this?

Miriam Lang is lecturer for social and global studies at the University Andina Simón Bolívar in Quito, Ecuador. During the 1990s, she was part of the anti-racist movement and is a co-founder of the Office for Medical Assistance for Refugees in Berlin.

Nina Treu works at Konzeptwerk Neue Ökonomie. She is co-editor of “Degrowth in Movement(s)”, where, among others, the interconnections between flight- and migration related political struggles and Degrowth are discussed.

Matthias Schmelzer works at Konzeptwerk Neue Ökonomie and is a Permanent Fellow at the Research Group Post-Growth Societies at the University of Jena. He works on the functioning and history of alternatives to capitalism.

Causes and Experiences of Flight and the Current Situation of Eritrean people living in Germany

Freweyni Habtemariam (Eritrean Initiative for Dialogue and Cooperation e.V.)

Venue: Casablanca (Josephstr. 12) // German and Tigrinya

In Tigrigna

This workshop is aimed at both refugees from Eritrea as well as volunteers and those working in the field. To begin the workshop, participants will gather questions and topics of both general and personal importance, followed by questions revolving around life in Germany. In the second part, there will be an exchange between groups, including the formulation of possible approaches and solutions. The aim of the workshop is to encourage self-organization, to mobilize self-help and to facilitate integration through networking and cooperation.
This workshop will be held in German and Tigrinya.

Freweyni Habtemariam has a diploma in German studies and Anglistics. She is deputy chairman of the Eritrean Initiative for Dialogue and Cooperation e.V, and certified interpreter and translator.

Movie: Revolution with bare hands. La trajectoire d’un peuple. Le Burkina Faso (Ouagadougou/Wien 2016, 71 minutes),

Documentary by Moussa Ouédraogo & Hans-Georg Eberl 

Talk with Hamado Dipama (AK Panafrikanismus, München) & Hans-Georg Eberl (AEI, Wien)

Venue: Lottas Kaufladen (Erich-Köhn-Str. 68) // French/Morée with German subtitles

„Revolution with bare hands. Le trajectoire d’un peuple. Le Burkina Faso” is a cinematic document of the memory of the insurrection of the population on 30 and 31 October 2014 in Burkina Faso, which has led to the overthrow of the dictatorial regime of Blaise Compaoré. The film approaches different protagonists of the insurrection and visits symbolic places of action. It asks the question of motivation, i.e. what the insurrection has to do with the catastrophic living conditions of the population as well as with their memories of previous conflicts of the last decades. The tales of people involved testify to how women, men and youths have stood up without weapons against a dictatorial and militarized regime, believing that a determined population is capable of conquering any kind of power. In addition, the film asks what hopes and expectations the various protagonists of the insurrection have about a future society.

Hamado Dipama fled from Burkina Faso to Germany in 2002 and lived with the “suspension of deportation” status for nine years. Since 2007 he is the spokesperson for the Bavarian Refugee Council. He is the founder of the Working Group Panafricanism Munich e.V., as well as co-founder and deputy chairperson of the Central Council of the African Community in Germany.

Hans Georg Eberl was a long time member of the caravan for the rights of refugees and migrants in Munich. He lives in Vienna, is a filmmaker and active with Afrique-Europe-Interact. In this context, he is regularly in Togo, Burkina Faso and Mali.