University of Wisconsin–Madison

Film Screening : Ali Mazrui

May 8, 2014 @ 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
206 Ingraham Hall
1155 Observatory Drive
University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706

Ali Mazrui: A Walking Triple Heritage

Introduction and post-film discussion with filmmaker,
Ndirangu Wachanga
Associate Professor
Media Studies and Information Science
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

Download poster (pdf)


This is a documentary film on the life and works of Ali Mazrui. This documentary is part of a larger research project, which seeks to preserve East African memories through the capture of raw voices using visual and audio technology. Ali Mazrui is regarded as one of the prominent African scholars of his generation; who made African intellectual debates relevant and central to global narratives, especially when it was tempting to retreat and be inward looking. Looking at his intellectual career, which spans the entire period of Africa’s independence, provides a kind of intellectual sociology of Africa. My documentary traces his life from Mombasa, Kenya to his current residence in Binghamton, New York. It was recorded in three continents: Africa, Europe, and North America.


Dr. Ndirangu Wachanga holds a PhD in information science from the University of North Texas and is the authorized documentary biographer of Prof. Ali A. Mazrui and Prof. Ngugi wa Thiong’o. His documentary projects seek to preserve East African memory by capturing raw voices using visual and audio technology. By creating an open access repository of the interviews, his project democratizes production of and access to knowledge. His work has been presented at Yale, Princeton, Rutgers, Witwatersrand, SUNY-Binghamton, University of North Texas, and the University of South Africa.

Wachanga’s expertise has been sought by the US State Department, and he has appeared on VOA and BBC to discuss media, ethics, and technology. He has written for media in different continents. His academic work has appeared in peer reviewed journals such as the Journal of Mass media ethics, Journal of African media studies, South African journal for communication theory and research, and African communication research. His journalistic work has appeared in the Daily Nation, East African Standard, Business Daily, North Texas Daily, and BBC.

Wachanga is an analyst for the Freedom House’s freedom of expression global index. His research interests include global media and information ethics; the intersections of media formations and social, political, economic and cultural practices; communication technologies, and the contemporary digital Diaspora. He is currently working on two monographs.


Africa Cartoons – An Encyclopedia of African Political Cartooning, Godfrey “Gado” Mwapembwa

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