image1 (8)       1. Is Mass-media doing enough to provide us with a real insight into African life while also reporting on events in Africa as they occur?
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I believe mass-media isn’t doing enough or even little. Every now and then you here news “of” Africa but not in detail. Africa also seems to be reported upon negatively more than positively.
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      2. “Stereotypes play an important role in helping us make sense of the world, and are not necessarily lies”… What are some of the most common representations of Africa in the media?
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I have always stood behind that exact statement. Stereotypes, 95% (in my opinion) are not necessarily lies; BUT I also live by the saying; “Stereotypes happen. I try not to embrace them or avoid them.”
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Africa’s biggest stereotype is POVERTY! According to the western world, everyone living in Africa is; miserable, starving, suffering, sick with some sort of disease, lack sources of clean water..etc. All these statements are true at least in every African country just like in any other continent.
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You have the rich, the middle class and the poor, the fact that mass media decides to focus on such a small and negative part of Africa as a whole is absurd. Yes Africa needs aid, but so do the foster care systems in America and planned parenthood.  The western world’s representation of Africa doesn’t influence my perception at all because i have lived in Uganda (born and raised) I have experienced poverty and I have experienced being comfortable, I have also lived in the United States (where i currently reside) and I have attended school with kids that were living from house to house. Poverty lives everywhere, Africa is filled with beautiful hotels and good roads as well. If only mass media would remember to cover that part of Africa once in a while.
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      3. Is there a pressing need to alter western portrayal of Africa
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I don’t necessarily think its a pressing issue as it would have been a decade ago. When you think about it in depth, other continents that are not of course Europe and U.S.A  are all portrayed incorrectly according to what these ‘larger than life’ continents want to believe. Things could be worse, 5 years ago we wouldn’t have an african comedian like Trevor Noah doing prime time TV in the states or even be nominated for Awards and so forth. I do believe we have made progress, an impact and soon enough we wont be a statistic anymore. Godspeed!