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This Week’s Hidden Gem March 12, 2009

Posted by Rebecca Kahn in Features, Hidden Gem.
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This month we have a real hidden gem – an old radio serial from the 1930s, which we found in the vast audio archives at the Internet Archive.

Not much is known about the radio series Moon Over Africa. It is thought to be a South African radio show which aired around 1937 or 1938. There are 26 episodes lasting 15 minutes each. Since nothing is really known about the series we are not sure if there were episodes which aired before, or after, these 26 episodes. The 26 episodes follow an expedition led by Professor Anton Edwards as they search for the missing city of Atlantis. They follow the directions of a shrunken head which speaks the ancient language of the people of Atlantis and run into many strange dangers in the African jungle.

It’s a real Boy’s Own Adventure story, a swashbuckler straight out of H Rider Haggard. If you’d like to hear the other 25 episodes in this epic tale of love, adventure and danger, you can download them from the Internet Archive here. They’re licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives license, so you’re free to download and share them.

This radio broadcast is old, and a throwback to another era, when people thought differently about Africa and it’s people. But we can’t discount its historical value, as a piece of ephemera from another time. The ideas in this broadcast are in no way a reflection of the principles or values of the iHeritage project.

This Week’s Hidden Gem February 20, 2009

Posted by Rebecca Kahn in Hidden Gem.
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This week’s Hidden Gem is an audio file which has been lurking in the Internet Archive‘s vast open source audio repository. It’s a wonderful recording by National Public Radio’s Afropop Worldwide show, and was made to celebrate South African music and culture, particularly of the period during the transition to democracy.

Veterans of contemporary SA music including Lucky Dube, Ray Phiri, Dorothy Masuka, and others are interviewed and they share their recollections of the key events of the apartheid era and the long journey to freedom: the June 16th 1976 Soweto Student Uprising, the February 11th 1990 release from jail of Nelson Mandela; the April 27th 1994 first democratic elections for the New South Africa. Younger stars of kwaito music including Kabelo and Thandiswa Mazwai speak for the youth generation.

http://www.archive.org/download/SouthAfricansRemember/SouthAfricansRemember_64kb_mp3.zip

Some of these amazing musicians are no longer with us. It’s a great treat to be able to hear their voices again.

This audio recording is stored on the Internet Archive under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical-No-Derivatives 3.0 license, so you are free to download and share it.

Hidden Gem January 29, 2009

Posted by Rebecca Kahn in Features.
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All over the internet, hidden away in archives, lurking on video-sharing sites, swimming in photo-streams and waiting quietly in the wings are (literally) thousands of of images, shorts, films, posts, photos and audio clips that reflect the fantastic heritage of South Africa and South Africans.

In what we’re hoping will be a regular feature on this site, we’re going to showcase the random gems that we stumble upon in our continual search for SA heritage and cultural artifacts online. This week, we’ve found a short documentary made by Link Media Inc, which looks at the Golden Dragon Restaurant, one of the very first Chinese restaurants in Cape Town. It’s a fascinating look at people who once considered themselves to be strangers in a strange land and yet who were a cornerstone in their community. It also examines how the Chinese community is only now shaking off its confusion to claim its place in the new South Africa.

This documentary is part of the Open Source Movies collection on the Internet Archive, and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial license which means that you can remix and/or republish this as long as it is for non-commercial purposes.