Episode 4 – Malaika Uwamahoro

Hello again, curious people!

In our last episode, Ep. 3, we talked about an amazing Rwandan author, Scholastique Mukasonga and her work. We also encountered the movie adaptation of her novel “Our Lady of the Nile”. In this adaptation all the main characters are portrayed by young Rwandan actresses. One of them is Malaika Uwamahoro. She was born in Rwanda, grew up in Uganda and later in the US, where she is currently based, returned to Rwanda in her teenage years.

But Malaika isn´t just an actress. She is also a poetry slammer, author, singer and activist. We got to sit down and have a conversation with her for this episode of our podcast! She wrote some amazing poems on her country, its heritage and so much more – exactly the topics we touched upon in our learning process! 

Two of those poems are included in this episode as well: “We lost when We forgot” and “Rwanda is Not Hotel Rwanda”. With those she wants to re-claim Rwanda’s own voice and help to shape a new narrative about her country which is often misportrayed, e.g. in the famous movie “Hotel Rwanda”. 

But we talked about so much more: the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda in 1994 in general, why this terminology is so important, her personal story and umbringing in Uganda, Rwanda and the US, the situation for young people there afterwards, how she got into the arts and art as a tool to deal with trauma and for healing, her work, the movie “Our Lady of the Nile”, what´s coming next for her and what she wants to achive with her art. We got to meet an inspiring, really kind artist who we hope will also inspire you to learn more about this amazing country called Rwanda and how far it has come since 1994!


The episode features the song “Acoustic guitar rythm with maracas” by maurolop (Intro), available under CC0 1.0 license; “Acoustic guitar- Sleepy” by afrodrumming, licensed under CC BY 3.0; “Peaceful Acoustic” by TomchikRec available under CC0 1.0 license and “Guitar loop 1l43” by Setuniman (Outro) available under CC BY-NC 3.0 license.

Curious to learn more? Click here to find a list of useful resources and links connected to the topics of our episodes:


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