The protests that led to the Egyptian revolution last year were organized in part by Wael Ghonim, who used an anonymous Facebook page to coordinate the demonstrations. In his new book, Ghonim explains how social media helped transform his country.
The rate of violence against women in South Africa is among the highest in the world. Human-rights organizations estimate that over 40% of South African women will be raped in their lifetime and say that only 1 in 9 rapes are reported — which is to say that the average South African woman is more likely to be raped than complete secondary school. A survey by South Africa's Medical Research Council in June 2009 found that 1 in 4 South African men admitted to having "had sex with a woman when she didn't consent," and 46% of those said they had done so more than once.
Gays and lesbians are a particular target in South Africa, as they are across Africa, where traditional social conservatism is being distilled into an angry homophobia. The first case of homophobic violence to gain national prominence in South Africa was the 2006 murder of Zoliswa Nkonyana, 19, who was clubbed, stoned and beaten to death by a mob of 20 young men. On Monday, dozens of demonstrators gathered to protest the fact that the nine men accused of Nkonyana's murder still haven't been sentenced — a court adjourned with yet another delay, the 32nd time the trial has been postponed. Of the 31 lesbians murdered in South Africa since 1998, the only case to result in a conviction was that of Eudy Simelane, the star player for Banyana Banyana, South Africa's national women's soccer team, who was gang-raped and murdered outside Johannesburg in 2008. Rights activists estimate that there are 10 corrective rapes a week just in Cape Town — a city of 2.5 million people.
As many as 500,000 Chinese have immigrated to Africa, lured by its oil, copper, uranium, wood and other natural resources. Many have thrived, creating large conglomerates. To serve them, other entrepreneurs have opened palatial restaurants. Or karaoke halls. The infusion of a distinctly different culture into African society — again — is turning out to be a critical chapter in the continent’s post-colonial history.