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Pambazuka News seeks to commemorate 41 years since the death of this important African political thinker. The Editors invite articles for a special issue on his life and work

20 January 2014 will mark 41 years since the assassination of Amilcar Cabral who hailed from Guinea-Bissau. As a revolutionary leader of the PAIGC (Partido Africano da Independência da Guiné e Cabo Verde) that was set up in 1956 with a mere five trusted companions, his party was critical in eventually defeating the intransigence of one of the most repressive of colonial regimes, the Portuguese colonial power. Cabral was not only an agronomist by training but a political thinker and leader at a time when Africa underwent tumultuous socio-political change led by strident demands for freedom, equality and justice from colonial subjugation by the African masses. His identification and work with the rural people of Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau became the basis of his writings that were far from armchair theorizing and based on the lives, experiences, insights he gained from his socio-political praxis.

His well-known quote is: “Always bear in mind that the people are not fighting for ideas, for the things in anyone’s head. They are fighting to win material benefits, to live better and in peace, to see their lives go forward, to guarantee the future of their children.” Perhaps today with the Arab uprisings, political protests in many other African countries, African people across the breadth of the continent are fighting for BOTH ideas (i.e. democracy, greater press freedom, equality for women and LGBT individuals etc.) and “material benefits” that Cabral refers to.

Cabral often said that practice comes before theory. He had humility to learn from society in order that reality informed his theorisation of society and the political principles that guided his political practice.

Pambazuka News seeks to commemorate 41 years since the death of this important African political thinker. We seek articles on the following aspects of Cabral – however the list below is not exhaustive:

- The relevance of Cabral’s speeches and writings to socio-economic and political developments in Africa today
- How do culture and national liberation manifest in Africa presently?
- The class struggle in Africa today
- Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde 41 years since Cabral’s assassination
- Liberation struggle, ethnic division and national identity in Guinea Bissau today
- Rural Community organization in Guinea Bissau, what remains from Cabral's legacy
- Cabral’s “weapon of theory” and its relevance or irrelevance in our times
- Cabral’s “general watchwords” and their relevance or irrelevance in our times
- The PAIGC and Cabral today


LENGTH OF ARTICLES: Articles are to be written in Microsoft Word, Font: Times, size 12, and between 1000-3000 words

Please submit a two-line biography at the end of your article and send to: [email protected]