Issue 104 reads like a riff on the word “souls.” It opens with an uncanny glimpse into a South African slum community rocked by rumors of a ghost, and free-associates from there: three eulogies in three styles, an untold love story, and a contemplation of the great book by W. E. B. Du Bois that canonized soul and soulfulness as the calling card of the African Diaspora. Throughout the issue, the same question arises again and again in different voices: how can we preserve human dignity across time and space? How can we give old souls the space to speak? The issue features a remarkable array of prominent figures in the Diaspora, past and present: C. L. R. James, Sally Hemings, Fela Kuti, the Notorious B.I.G., and the Wu-Tang Clan, to name a few.
Featured Article: uGogo: Residing with the Spectral in South Africa #OpenAccess
by Emily Margaretten
Ghosts and witches haunt Point Place, an abandoned building that serves as a hellish haven for street children in Durban, South Africa. Emily Margaretten, an anthropologist, finds that calling the evil spirit by its name--AIDS--does little to dispel its eerie effects on the minds, as well as the bodies, of those living "off the map" and "in-between."
Contributors: Alexander Acosta, The Artists' Press, Willem Boshoff, Aichlee Bushnell, Louis Chude-Sokei, Teju Cole, Marlon Forrester, Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah, Stephen Gray, Joshua Jelly-Shapiro, Emily Margaretten, Judith Mason, David McDermott Hughes, Sam Nhlengethwa, Eria Nsubuga 'Sane', Kameelah Rasheed, Paul C. Taylor, Chris Vognar.