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Celebrate Africa Week

Letter to the Editor | Thursday, March 30, 2006

This coming week, April 2-8, is Africa Week at Notre Dame. Sponsored by the Africa Faith and Justice Network, Africa Week is intended to generate dialogue about a range of issues concerning the African continent. For instance, topics covered during this year’s Africa Week include genocide, agricultural trade, famine, child soldiering and war. Unfortunately, this sampling paints a rather gloomy portrait of the African situation. However, it is possible that through discussion, we might come to understand the ways that we are called to respond – ways in which we might unite with the peoples of Africa.

In fact, unity is the theme of this year’s Africa Week. But going above and beyond unity through dialogue, it is also important that we unite in celebration. Africa is not a black-hole continent – it is one of hope, optimism and resolve. The challenge posed to us is to recognize the beauty in African cultures, traditions and histories – to see hope and optimism where we might otherwise become discouraged. One aspect of Africa Week that highlights this aspect of unity well is Afrika Nite, sponsored by the African Students Association, to be held on Friday, April 8. In addition, T-shirts will be sold in the dining halls and in LaFortune at the beginning of the week so that others might become visibly aware of our solidarity with the peoples of Africa.

Lastly, posters and other flyers around campus will announce the dates and locations of various lectures and panels being held in honor of Africa Week.

As students at Notre Dame, we understand what it means to unite – whether on campus, in the community or on the field. Please consider taking part in Africa Week 2006 and demonstrating unity with the peoples of Africa, both in celebration and in consideration of the many obstacles that they continue to face.

Katie HauswirthsophomorePasquerilla West HallMarch 28