What do African men need to be free? To be authentically free, that is. Not only politically, but also economically and psychosocially. Free from political and economic trickeration, as Don King might have said, but from subjective and psychical oppression.
Knowledge. Health. Power. That’s what men need. They need knowledge of themselves and the world. They need to stay alive and healthy. They need to use their untapped power for social justice. These, in my view, are among the most important needs to liberate men from pasts charactiserised by slavery, patriarchy, colonialism, and racism. These pasts, I believe, continue to cast their shadows on men’s present lives. The goal of NEW AFRICAN MEN: THE A-Z OF AFRICAN MASCULINITIES AND MEN’s LIVES IN AFRICA is to liberate men from the past that shackles the present.
However, men must be free also from injurious gender beliefs. It is out of these that disabling rage, insecurities, pain and lovelessness arise. Of course, men also need good jobs, health, food, shelter, and sex. These too, and many more topics, are subjects of NEW AFRICAN MEN.