Wikipedia and Africa

Paris has more information contained in Wikipedia than the entire African continent. That's crazy!

Wikipedia is the fifth most visited website on Earth with around 6 billion visitors every month and is recognised as the world's largest repository of human knowledge. School curriculums and even entire worldviews can be formed simply through reading Wikipedia.

When the city of Paris has more information contained in Wikipedia than the entire African continent, there is a significant risk of young Africans perceiving home as a “single story.” To make matters worse, a significant amount of content on Wikipedia about African culture, languages, geography etc., is written by Westerners. The inevitable lack of cultural context and cultural perspective is, clearly, not healthy.

The good news today is that the WikiAfrica Education Program is endeavouring to foster creativity and an interest in culture in African school curriculums by teaching students how to prepare and submit, as well as edit, articles on Wikipedia.

In recent times, the Program has led students contributing 40,000 submissions, including articles, and also audio clips, edits, photos, and more. Notably, many of the most detailed of these submissions were in African languages like Xhosa.

Long may this continue!


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