What is Kony 2012?
In March 2012, the American non-profit organisation Invisible Children published an online video named Kony 2012. The purpose of this 30-minute video was to make Joseph Kony, the leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in Uganda known globally in order to have him arrested by the end of 2012 when the campaign expired. Within six days of the video release, it had garnered 100 million clicks and had consequently become a hot topic of discussion in the media. Now the clicks are more than one hundred million.
The documentary is based on the personal account of Jason Russell, the co-founder of Invisible Children and director of Kony 2012, in Northern Uganda in 2006 and his meeting with Jacob Acaye, a victim of LRA atrocities. In this video, Jason sets himself the task of explaining the Kony 2012 campaign to his four-year-old son. He begins by explaining the story of their “African friend” Jacob, whom Jason helped, and the unjust suffering facing the children of Uganda: tens of thousands of children are kidnapped and some of the girls are brutalised as sex slaves, and to kill and maim tens of thousands of people. There are no human rights under the control of LRA.
From a post-colonialist perspective, this video describes Africa people as victims and serves a colonial discourse by using images that portray the people of Uganda or Africa as primitive and inferior. But the campaign is framed with an approach of politics of pity and emphasising the relation between the fortunate American youth and the unfortunate Black African. Furthermore, it reinforces colonial stereotypes of Africans as helpless and incapable of dealing with atrocities on their own. Furthermore, the campaign is framed with an approach of politics of pity and emphasising the relation between the fortunate American youth and the unfortunate Black African. It reinforces colonial stereotypes of Africans as helpless and incapable of dealing with atrocities on their own. As a result, the way the campaign aims to engage youth through humanitarian empathy or compassion may turn out to be an inadvertent form of imperialism.
Review- Kony 2012 https://www.e-ir.info/2013/01/30/review-kony-2012/