What African-American Women Can Learn from Bang! Magazine

During Black Business and Women History Month, we would like the sistas here in America to take a look at a sista in Tanzania who started a magazine operation called Bang! magazine. BBC did a special on the sista and you can read about her and check out the video at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-21693448 Nine years ago, without any experience in journalism, Tanzania's Emelda Mwamanga started her country's first lifestyle publication, Bang! magazine, which now also reaches audiences in neighbouring Uganda, Kenya and Zambia. She had returned home from South Africa shortly after completing a degree in Industrial, Organisational and Labour Studies at the University of Cape Town, and was working as a human resource officer for Coca Cola when she decided to publish her magazine on the side. Her starting capital was $3,000 (£2,000) that she had saved from her job and $6,000 she borrowed from a bank. "Since I was in university, I had this passion of magazines and I used to collect a lot of lifestyle magazines in South Africa. Back in Tanzania, I saw a huge gap - we didn't have a lifestyle magazine," she told the BBC's series African Dream. "We didn't actually have a magazine that showcased the talents, the good things and gave hope to people". Interesting because here in America we don’t have a magazine that showcased the talents, the good things and gave hope to Black people either! The acronym for Bang! Magazine means “believe and never give up” which explains they are definitely established a base of positivity. I really like the BBC coverage and her interview. She stated in the video that her magazine discuss fashion and the local shops to buy the latest trends, discuss finance and how to invest money and talk about different businesses owned by local people and role models in her country. Here in America, they talk about drama, how to spend money and promote a bunch of self-serving Black elitist morons and believe the West Side of Chicago should admire them. After you sistas see all of this about this sista, I want to show you her YouTube videos and this is the core of the article and the number #1 thing we want sistas in America to take away from this article: What you just saw in the three videos is what upset me and the 30 Rotten Dissidents so much about African-American sistas. You sistas know what you are looking at and I’m going to explain so me and you can just put it out there. Is this African sista rough around the edges and amateur? Is this sista not polished or tight? Is the video location generic and they talking scripted? Of course the answer is “yes” to all of the above but guess what – she still doing this ish while many of you American sistas are just freaking scared to go there for yourself, your people and your future because you scared of looking imperfect to people who don’t want to see you succeed anyway! I have told you sistas as well as the hard-headed brothas over and over again – they are emerging over in Africa and they learning from mistakes and getting better. But the point is they are trying and yeah, she look rough around the edges, but give her two to three years she will be a global media mogul while most of the sistas here in America are just sitting there still scared and doubting themselves. I want you sistas to be exactly like her and stop trying to be perfect and just start somewhere and do it! I don’t give a crap if your first video acting is cornball, your first edition magazine editorial and artwork looks like ish – go out there and just do it and publish it! Don’t be embarrassed and keep pushing! You will get better and you will learn from experience and you will be seeing others do what you do and pick up on what they doing good and improve over time. Stop acting like you going to come out of the gate perfect and polished or you don’t come out at all – align your American Black women behind with the rest of the African Diaspora and emerge right along with your sistas worldwide. I already know the trajectory and end game for African-American women which is our next article on this topic. Let me just give a hint – the Asians are courting African women, Latin American are courting African women, Europe is courting African women but wait a minute – who is courting you African-American sistas in the global economy? Yeah, thought so... Note for the Brothas: check out Emelda above and her momma...yeah, I know..that's the motherland, homey...LOL, yeah these African-American sistas actually believe we brothas don't got options as these global emerging sistas are getting their money up while these sistas over here watching Love and Hip-Hop... Ok, I hope you sistas fully see what I keep trying to tell you about going for yours right now. Step your damn game up by stepping into the arena and become part of the global economy and stop chasing this dead-end "Independent Black woman with American job" bullsh*t. Work with your sistas worldwide and compliment them with ventures and businesses so both of yall can help each other grow. If this sista Emelda Mwamanga can launch a magazine like this in Tanzania, then you damn right I have the right to question why a chick from Howard or Spellman ain’t got ish to show for on this level in 2013.

4 thoughts on “What African-American Women Can Learn from Bang! Magazine

  1. Haha Hey hey now! Ed, I’m definately on the ball with what you getting at brotha. I got some flyers going out this weekend and just got my official business license today. I’m definately stepping my game up and especially this summer when I got these ppl out here mouths wide shut lol!! Ed, these wannabe’s are gonna be shocked when hey see a sista from Fresno do more than just sports to put her city on!
    I’m going to show these young sistas in my city how to really get they money up the right way. I am going to conquer this territory of mine and go even harder with my hustle to prove to myself that I can exploit all my possibilities. This was a good article and def keep giving me more insight to possibilities with developing solutions for our nation. Ladies, we need to connect if you out there reading this article! We play a major role in this come up and our brother Ed has blessed us with his mind.
    Go Get It!.

  2. Thanks Ed for this post. Another gift, another gem love it… I appreciate our Sista, Emelda Mwamanga and all of the other Sistas featured in the post pictures & videos it’s her first but they are doing it and in a great way. The energy watching the all of the images provides a good dose of satisfaction and pride. Same sense of pride for sistas here locally, who are doing something different and going for what we need and want. This shows all of us, here and abroad, the Power of Belief. There is nothing that we, as Sistas cannot accomplish!

    And to Sista Shay, Congratulations on your business license. Contact me on the back page via email. I couldn’t find yours. I would love to speak with you. Sista you know from Fresno to Baltimore, Black Girls Rock,Thanks Ed!

  3. Thanks again Ed for this article.

    Yeah…we definitely have to get over the idea or the belief that we can’t do if we don’t have all our “ducks in a row” so to speak. It’s very motivating and myth dispelling to see the videos presented in this article. Thank you very much. I am a work in progress learning SQL and getting my imperfect “ducks in a row”. Keep it coming.

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