“Journalista” is designed to provide analysis of the political economies of countries in Africa’s Great Lakes region, particularly Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. My concerns include the impact of neoliberal economic policy on postcolonial states, the tensions between grassroots development and mainstream development by major development organizations, and the dynamic and complex relationships between states in this region. I am also extremely interested in how external actors impact Africa’s Great Lakes region, such as transnational corporations, outside nations such as China and the United States, nonprofits and/or non-governmental organizations, and much more.
The phrase political economy is really gathering a lot of attention these days. My working definition of this concept is the interdisciplinary approach to understand the intersections of capitalism (and other economic models), government, and law. For example, a commodity analysis of coltan might illustrate the unregulated, informal, and devastated economy of the Eastern Congo; the relationship between mineral extraction and arms trading; child labor and resource exploitation, and the neocolonial relationship between the Congo and transnational corporations.
Political economy challenges the way economics is typically studied and is strengthened by its interdisciplinary approach which sees history in consumption patterns and economics in ethnic and gender dynamics.
I am using this blog to explore the field of interactive journalism through CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism, and hope to bring a multi-media approach to my work in research and reporting.
I am a twenty-two year old female living at International House in Morningside Heights, New York City. I recently returned in May 2007 from studying Luganda and Development Studies at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. My research took me to a variety of places in Uganda, such as Mbare, Mbale, Gulu, Kampala and its suburbs, Jinja, and Busia. I also had a wonderful opportunity to travel through the eastern Rwandan countryside and visit critical social and historical landmarks in Kigali, Rwanda. My time in East Africa was much, much too brief and I hope to return very shortly!
I completed a degree in Africana studies at Sarah Lawrence, which encompassed a variety of classes on the African continent and its extremely diverse diaspora! I am a passionate historian and particularly enjoy gathering oral histories of very different people, especially people whose voices are marginalized. I enjoy creative writing very much, and I write nonfiction, fiction, and poetry.
I was taken care of and virtually adopted by several fantastic Ugandan families. I cannot express my gratitude enough to the Busulwa, Horace, and Kaggwa families for the great love and joy they brought me. In one week in Uganda, I learned more than four years at Sarah Lawrence College! Weebale nyo, or thank you very much!
I owe a serious debt to extremely profound scholars at Sarah Lawrence. I extend my gratitude to Joshua Muldavin, my don and professor of geography; Komozi Woodard and Mary Dillard, two brilliant professors of Africana studies, and Ray Seidelman, a wonderful Politics professor and inspiring community organizer.

Kampala, Uganda


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