From Africa to the world - how storytelling using digital channels is Africa's greatest export

Puno Selesho

A slam poetry performance & talk by Puno Selesho, a South African poet and social digital entrepreneur on the evolution of African storytelling. Stories are the lifeblood of Africa, from times of oral traditions, passed around roaring fires, to our current modern digital age where platforms such as Instagram are used to preserve our rich narrative

Format: a 20 -30min talk, laced with poems and stories by Puno with a Q&A at the end 

Topic & content: Highlighting the strength and transformative power of storytelling, particularly in Africa. How it has created identity, framed values and even dismantled systems of oppression. Storytelling on a global stage gives Africa a seat at the table and humanises what once was perceived as a dark continent. For example, movies like The Black Panther have given way to a whole new confident and vibrant perspective of Africa which has elevated the status of African filmmaking on a world platform.

Digital transformation: platforms such as Instagram, Tiktok, YouTube etc. have given African creators a platform to continue the tradition of storytelling which historically was used to teach values to kids, guide communities in decisions and for pleasure and entertainment. As African creators, these platforms allow us to reach one another and the world and empower us to continue the lyrical narrative our mothers and grandmothers taught us. Stories and narratives are our lifeblood and one of our greatest contributions to the world. Through poetry and conversation, I will unpack the magnitude of this value but also interrogate ways in which these tools can be used better. Lastly, the audience will be encouraged to document their own narratives for the next generation to learn and enjoy.

Puno Selesho's participation at re:publica 23 is kindly made possible by the Robert Bosch Foundation. 

Black and white image of Puno smiling to camera - Head to knee shot
Poet, Performer, Entrepreneur