Nnimmo Bassey is a Nigerian environmental justice activist, architect, essayist and poet. He is the director of the ecological think-tank, Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) and coordinator of Oilwatch International. He was the chair of Friends of the Earth International (the largest grassroots environmental organisation in the world) from 2008-2012 as well as the co-founder and executive director of Environmental Rights Action (1993-2013) which is based in Nigeria (in Benin city, Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Yenagoa).

He was a co-recipient of the 2010 Right Livelihood Award also known as the “Alternative Nobel Prize.” In 2012 he received the Rafto Human Rights Award and in 2014 he was awarded Nigeria’s national honour as a Member of the Federal Republic (MFR) in recognition of his environmental activism.

Nnimmo Bassey is the author of the highly acclaimed book, To Cook a Continent, which details the destructive impacts of the extractive industries and the climate crises in Africa. He has also authored books on architecture. His poetry focuses on environmental justice. ‘We thought it was oil but it was blood’ and ‘I will not dance to your beat’, are two of his most widely known books of poems.

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  • I see the invisible

    Truth be told, I never thought I would write another volume of poetry after the last, I will not Dance to Your Beat (2011). The reason was that my previous volumes were reactive to the circumstances of the times. Patriots and Cockroaches (1992) was a reaction to the socio-political corruption that had engulfed Africa and dimmed the enthusiasm that had been built by the years of struggle for independence. Whereas we thought we were stepping into a post-colonial era, what we stepped into was a vicious neo-colonial times. The next collection, Poems on the Run (1995) was a reaction to military autocracy and the repression that followed. The volume was literally written underground. This was followed by Intercepted (1998) all written while detained at Kalakuta Republic of Alagbon Close. We Thought it was Oil But it was Blood (2002) responded to two things primarily – extractivism and the accompanying human and environmental rights abuses in the Niger Delta and elsewhere. The massive erosion of biodiversity and attacks on food sovereignty through the introduction of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into our agricultural system inspired I Will not Dance to your Beat.

    What you have in your hands, or on your screens, is a compilation that is largely more meditative than the previous collections. There are moments of reflection on the colonial and neoliberal foundations that permit a willful disconnection from nature and the resultant destructive extractivism.

    Some of the poems came through conversations and poetry writing sessions with Peter Molnar, Maryam al-Khawaja — Rafto Human Rights laureates and Salil Tripathi, a member of the board of PEN International, in August 2017. The sessions held at a beautifully rustic location in Celleno, Italy, were documented on celluloid by the duo of Maria Galliana Dyrvik and Anita Jonsterhaug Vedå of SMAU, a multimedia firm in Norway. Poetic relationship with Maria and Anita has continued over the years and their work continues to inspire more and more poems.

  • The revolutionary ecological legacy of Herbert Marcuse – 2nd Edition

    Description (2188 / 2500)
    The author appeals to the energies of those engaged in a wide range of contemporary social justice struggles such as ecosocialism, antiracism, the women’s movement, LGBTQ rights, and antiwar forces. As the dialectical counterpart of Marcuse’s Great Refusal, the book, which culminates with the ‘EarthCommonWealth Project’ is keyed to what we are struggling for, not just what we are struggling against. The author argues that regressive political forces must be countered today, and this is best accomplished through radical collaboration around an agenda recognizing the basic economic and political needs of diverse subaltern communities. System negation must become a new general interest. The author discusses core ethical insights from African philosophical sources, indigenous American philosophy, and radical feminist philosophy. Humanity’s first teachings on ethics are to be found in ancient African proverbs. These subsequently served also as a critique of colonialism and neocolonialism. Long-suppressed indigenous American sources supply a philosophical and political critique of Euro-centric economic and cultural values. They also offer an understanding of humanity’s place in nature and the leadership of women and attest to modes of cooperative and egalitarian forms of community. Feminist anthropology furnishes an historical context for understanding the origins of patriarchy and how to move beyond dominator power to new forms of partnership power.

    The book envisions the displacement and transcendence of capitalist oligarchy as such, not simply its most bestial and destructive components. This is a green economic alternative because its ecological vision sees all living things and their non-living earthly surroundings as a global community capable of a dignified, deliberate coexistence. It is searching for a new system of ecological production, egalitarian distribution, shared ownership, and democratized governance, having its foundation in the ethics of partnership productivity with an ecosocialist and humanist commitment to living our lives on the planet consistent with the most honorable and aesthetic forms of human social and political fulfillment.

  • Politics of Turbulent Waters: Reflections on Ecological, Environmental and Climate Crises in Africa

    For the past 10 years, the Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) has been on the front line of the struggle for environmental justice, climate justice and food sovereignty in Africa and the globe. It has been a decade of non-stop probing of the exploitation of resources, peoples and nations, which has given rise to numerous environmental and climate injustices. HOMEF has had a decade of witnessing and standing against the injustice, the powers and structures (industries and policies) suffocating the rights of the people to a healthy environment and standing with the neglected to take charge of their once self-managed food and agricultural systems. The struggle has necessitated the reawakening of communities’ consciousness to the injustices that besiege them and to their ‘people power’ – power to be utilized in seeking the desired change.mPolitics of Turbulent Waters is a compendium of selected articles in the 36 issues of the Eco-instigator published from 2013 to 2022. The Eco-instigator is yet another tool used by HOMEF to pull together thoughts and reports of activities that advance environmental justice and food sovereignty. Issue by issue, these thoughts and reports flow from within HOMEF and other environmental/climate justice and food sovereignty advocates from across Africa and the globe.They form this rich assemblage (Politics of turbulent waters) to commemorate HOMEF’s 10th anniversary. The title of the book is one of Nnimmo Bassey’s (the director of HOMEF) numerous articles that have graced some pages of the different issues of the Eco-instigator. The article cum title encapsulates the messages that the book intends to convey to you, the reader. It crystallizes the dire condition of Africa and its waters and the power imbalance together with the spatial disposition that plunged the continent into the calamitous environmental situation it faces. It speaks of the politics of economic development and market fundamentalism that avows to maintain the status quo in terms of destructive exploitation of Africa’s marine and other natural resources.

    USD $ 1.00USD $ 20.00
  • PAS DE REDD EN AFRIQUE

    La présente publication du Réseau Pas de REDD en Afrique (No REDD in Africa Network) a pour but de démystifier le REDD, les projets de type REDD et toutes leurs variantes, et de montrer ce qu’ils sont vraiment : des mécanismes injustes conçus pour lancer une nouvelle phase de colonisation du continent africain. Les exemples présentés démontrent clairement que le REDD est une escroquerie et que les pollueurs savent qu’il leur permet d’acheter le « droit » de polluer.

    USD $ 10.00
  • Oil Politics: Echoes of Ecological Wars

    The essays here contribute to developing and deepening an understanding of the ecological challenges ravaging Nigeria, Africa and our world today. They illustrate the global nature of these terrors. These essays are not meant just to enable for coffee table chatter: they are intended as calls to action, as a means of encouraging others facing similar threats to share their experiences.

    Set out in seven sections, this book of 54 essays deals with deep ecological changes taking place primarily in Nigeria but with clear linkages to changes elsewhere in the world. The essays are laid out with an undergird of concerns that characterise the author’s approach to human rights and environmental justice advocacy. The first section rightly presents broad spectrum ecological wars manifesting through disappearing trees, spreading desertification, floods, gas flaring and false climate solutions.

  • Stop the Continent Grab and the REDD-ification of Africa

    So-called Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) is emerging as a new form of colonialism and economic subjugation. This book shows how these unjust mechanisms were designed to usher in a new phase of colonization through an invasion of genetically modified crops and trees which threatens to take over entire ecosystems.

  • Cozinhar Um Continente: A Extração Destrutiva e a Crise Climática na África

    Críticas da obra:
    “Uma provocante crítica à extração contemporânea dos recursos (talvez mais adequadamente, “exploração” dos recursos) na África Subsariana. Na sua convincente análise, e em momentos abrasadora, Bassey apresenta uma critica cativante e abrangente da crise social e ambiental que se vive na África” – Chatham House
    “De escravos a diamantes e passando pelo petróleo, há muito que os países mais consumistas têm vindo a pilhar a África a seu bel-prazer. Bassey explica muito bem como tudo isso tem vindo a acontecer, frisando bem o que procura a África: Justiça. Leia a obra e junte-se ao apelo de Bassey” – Annie Leonard, autora d´A estória das coisas
    “Um livro que explica, de forma perspicaz e eloquente, o que a África pode fazer para travar as novas formas de colonização exacerbadas pelo caos das mudanças climáticas” – Pablo Solon, ex-embaixador da Bolívia nas Nações Unidas
    “É uma obra que, a par da forte denúncia que faz da ganância e do saque da riqueza africana, apresenta perspetivas de esperança” – Camilla Toulmin, presidente do Instituto Internacional de Desenvolvimento e Meio Ambiente
    “A África e o seu ambiente. Com um estilo refrescante, o autor torna as suas ideias extremamente acessíveis. Um dos mais proeminentes ambientalistas da África, faz uma análise abrangente dos desafios que enfrenta o continente, inspirando as pessoas a agir.” – David Fig, Presidente da Biowatch South Africa e autor do Staking Their Claims
    “Para aqueles que ainda estão sépticos dos efeitos das mudanças climáticas, este livro vai deixa-los não apenas incomodados e preocupados, mas também motiva-los a fazer alguma coisa” – Nigerian Compass

    O nigeriano Nnimmo Bassey é arquiteto, ativista ambiental e escritor. Foi presidente dos Amigos da Terra Internacional (Friends of the Earth International) de 2008 a 2012 e Diretor Executivo da Ação pelos Direitos Ambientais (Environmental Rights Action) durante duas décadas. Em 2009, foi nomeado “Herói do Ambiente” pela revista Time e, em 2010, foi co-vencedor do prestigiado Right Livelihood Award (considerado o Prémio Nobel Alternativo). Em 2012, ganhou o Rafto Prize. É atualmente diretor da Fundação Health of Mother Earth, uma organização ambientalista de reflexão e advocacia.

    USD $ 25.99