Lusophone Africa: Beyond Independence is a study of the contemporary cultural production of Portuguese-speaking Africa and its critical engagement with globalization in the aftermath of colonialism, especially since the advent of multiparty politics and market-oriented economies.
Exploring the evolving relationship of Lusophone Africa with Portugal, its former colonial power, and Brazil, Fernando Arenas situates the countries on the geopolitical map of contemporary global forces. Drawing from popular music, film, literature, cultural history, geopolitics, and critical theory to investigate the postcolonial condition of Portuguese-speaking Africa, Arenas offers an entirely original discussion of world music phenomenon Cesária Évora, as well as the most thorough examination to date of Lusophone African cinema and of Angolan post-civil-war fiction.
Throughout, Arenas evokes the rich multidimensionality of this community of African nations as a whole and of its individual parts: Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, and Mozambique, and São Tomé and Príncipe since they gained their independence in the mid-1970s. In doing so, he puts forth a conceptual framework for understanding, for the first time, recent cultural and historical developments in Portuguese-speaking Africa.