Prince William Ansa Sasraku
Mezzotint, after a painting by Gabriel Mathias.
The Akwamu, Denkyira, Akim and Fanti people of what is now Ghana were involved throughout the eighteenth century in wars to control trading links with Europeans on the coast. In the mid-century the king of the Akwamu, Nana Ansa Sasraku, came to dominate a vast stretch of land from Denkyira to the Accra plains. To consolidate his power, Sasraku knew that effective communication was needed with the main trading partners - the Europeans. Sasraku realised that he needed a trusted English-speaking mediator and so arranged for his son to be educated in England.
The British sea captain to whom Prince William Ansa Sesraku was entrusted took him instead to Barbados and sold him into slavery. Luckily for the prince, his father’s control of West African trade was important enough for the young man to be retrieved and taken to London as promised. The prince was the toast of the town and his story was told in prints, poems, newspaper reports and a book entitled The Royal African.
(With thanks to Otoobour Djan Kwasi II and Adelaide Adu-Amankwah)
Gaza was bombarded with 273 airstrikes yesterday (8th July). That’s an average of 11 an hour. Gaza is about 25 miles long and 4 miles wide, with a population of 1.7 million crammed into that tiny space. It is under Israeli occupation and Israeli siege. Hospitals estimate they will run out of resources to treat the wounded in about two days. Electricity is intermittent. Gaza has no army, air force or navy. Israel is the fourth largest military power in the world. Resistance to occupation is allowed under international law. Israel’s occupation, siege and collective punishment of Gaza is not.
A recent study from Duke University’s School of Medicine found that the available HPV vaccines, Gardasil and Cervarix, don’t prevent the HPV infections common in black women. Gardasil and Cervarix protect against HPV 16, HPV 18, HPV 6 and HPV 11 — strains that are notorious for causing cervical cancers. The only problem? HPV 16 and 18 occur more in white women than black women, who tend to show HPV subtypes 33, 35, 58, and 68. So while white women might also not be protected from all strains by the HPV vaccine, they are certainly in a much safer position than black women.
“HPV 16 and 18 occur less frequently in African-Americans than in whites,” Dr. Cathrine Hoyo, associate professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Duke University School of Medicine, told Health Day. Duke’s study looked at 600 abnormal pap smears and found that almost 86 percent of the women examined had detectable HPV. Yet, as Hoyo explained, “African-Americans had half the HPV 16 and 18 frequency as whites did.”
As Bustle reported last summer, this disparity may be the reason that African-American women are 20 percent more likely to be diagnosed with cervical cancer…It’s upsetting that Gardasil leaves many black women without adequate protection against HPV and cervical cancer. Conflating the healthcare needs of white women with those of black women keeps us from accessing adequate treatment in multiple areas, and this is especially troubling when it comes to HPV. Had there been funding for a vaccine specifically designed for my black, female body, a shot that protects my body as well as it does white women, I might very well be HPV-free today.
—What It’s Like to Have HPV: How the Vaccine Failed to Protect Me as a Black Woman, by Evette Dionne (via nitanahkohe)