The Chimurenga Library is an online archive of black periodicals, and an exhibition and research method by Chimurenga, a Cape Town-based, pan-African publisher and broadcaster of topics dealing with arts and politics.
The Chimurenga Library seeks to reimagine the library as a laboratory for extended curiosity, new adventures, critical thinking, daydreaming, socio-political involvement, partying and random perusal. It offers an opportunity to investigate the library and the archive as both a conceptual and physical space in which African memories are preserved and history decided, enabling visitors to reactivate it – to appropriate, interpret, reconfigure and interrogate archival structures and materials – and to rethink the meaning of identity, history, memory and loss.
The Chimurenga Library has thus engaged a politics of friendship across multiple platforms and in various spaces and contexts. By moving beyond the scope of the traditional archive and, ever more decisively, away from the institution to the public arena, from collection and preservation to participation, from distance to intimacy, it has forged alternative systems and relation-based relationships between individuals, between individuals and collectives, and between individuals and the environment.