Tag Archives: frelimo

African soldier, Portuguese army

(This is Part I. Part II is here.) In Portuguese bookstores, history shelves sag with memoirs by Portuguese vets of the colonial wars in Africa. And in bookstores in Mozambique, the same space is reserved for memoirs by antigos combatentes, … Continue reading

Posted in Maputo, Mozambique, Portugal | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Wood and zinc

In my last post, I mentioned the wood-frame, zinc-paneled homes that one finds scattered throughout Xipamanine, relics of a time when such a home was for African families the upper limit of luxury. You can find dozens of wood-and-zinc houses … Continue reading

Posted in Maputo, Mozambique | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Helicopters over Xipamanine

A standard interview begins with the boring question: When were you born? Usually I get the simple answer, and we move on to more interesting things. Ana Magaia, the actress, answered the question with the date (December 27), the year … Continue reading

Posted in Maputo, Mozambique | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“X is like imperialism”

The military junta that ruled Greece beginning in 1967 banned the Beatles, miniskirts, and the letter Z. (At least according to this movie.) Z was shorthand for the word zei—“he lives”— a pithy slogan of resistance that recalled the memory … Continue reading

Posted in Mozambique | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Mondlane was an Indians fan

In 2009, I attended a conference in Maputo marking the fortieth anniversary of the death of Eduardo Mondlane, the founding president of Frelimo, Mozambique’s independence movement. I greeted Janet Mondlane, his widow, an American who grew up in Illinois. Eduardo … Continue reading

Posted in Mozambique | Tagged , , , , , | 9 Comments

Revolutionary force meets immovable object

Beginning in May 1975, Samora Machel and his entourage headed south through Mozambique on a triumphal tour of the country they were scheduled to take charge of on the 25 of June. Just before their arrival in Lourenço Marques for … Continue reading

Posted in Maputo, Mozambique, Portugal | Tagged , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Portugal big and small

Here’s some pretty striking 60s-era propaganda I recently came across in the archives: Translation: “Mozambique is only Mozambique because it’s Portugal.” Confused?

Posted in Angola, Mozambique, Portugal | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments