Northwestern University

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Jan
24
Wed 12:00 PM

Erik Ponder: Stalled Democracy, Incomplete Transition

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When: Wednesday, January 24, 2018
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM  

Where: 620 Library Place, Room 106, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: - Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Program of African Studies   847.491.7323

Group: Program of African Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings

Description:

Join the Program of African Studies for our weekly lunch and lecture.

Stalled Democracy, Incomplete Transition: South Africa and the African National Congress at a Crossroads

Erik Ponder, Northwestern University Library

Bio and Abstract
Erik Ponder is the African Studies librarian at Michigan State University Libraries. He is a southern African specialist and has been traveling to the region for over 20 years. He has conducted numerous research projects in South Africa that have focused on contemporary issues of democracy and democratization.

The presentation explores the crisis of democracy and one-party politics in South Africa. It is posited that South Africa has experienced a partial democratic transition and that in fact the democratic process has been stalled. The presentation will analyze political developments within the past year and pay particular attention to the electoral outcome and selection of new party leadership at the 54th National Conference of the African National Congress and its implications for national elections in 2019.

Jan
31
Wed 12:00 PM

Will Reno: Investigating New Models of Civil-Military Relations in Africa

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When: Wednesday, January 31, 2018
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM  

Where: 620 Library Place, Room 106, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: - Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Program of African Studies   847.491.7323

Group: Program of African Studies

Co-Sponsor(s):
International Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings

Description:

Join the Program of African Studies for our weekly lunch and lecture.

Investigating New Models of Civil-Military Relations in Africa: Evidence from the Field

Will Reno, Director, PAS, Political Science

Biography
Professor Reno's research, teaching, service and community engagements focus on understanding the causes of political violence, comparisons of political violence in Africa with political violence elsewhere, the organization and behavior of insurgent groups, and the politics of authoritarian regimes. He collects data through field research, and consultation of primary documents, and critical readings of secondary sources. Reno's analytical method includes the comparison of case studies, chosen to maximize controls of particular variables in efforts to identify strong causal links. Blending an observational approach from the traditions of area studies with qualitative analytical models in the field of Comparative Politics, he participates in a conversation with anthropology and sociology about how to conduct ethical and analytically rewarding research in politically unstable environments. Reno also participates in broad analytical debates about the nature of corruption and coercion and their roles in the development of political institutions and the changing nature of contemporary insurgencies.

Feb
7
Wed 12:00 PM

Pamela Khanakwa: “Take him and tell him to be circumcised”

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When: Wednesday, February 7, 2018
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM  

Where: 620 Library Place, Room 106, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: - Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Program of African Studies   847.491.7323

Group: Program of African Studies

Co-Sponsor(s):
International Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings

Description:

Join the Program of African Studies for our weekly lunch and lecture.

“Take him and tell him to be circumcised”: Moral Order and Respectability in Early Postcolonial Uganda

Pamela Khanakwa, History, Archaeology, and Heritage Studies at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda (currently visiting scholar, University of Michigan)

Bio
Pamela Khanakwa is a lecturer in the Department of History, Archaeology and Heritage Studies at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda. She is currently visiting at the African Studies Centre at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor under the University of Michigan African Presidential Scholarship (UMAPS). At the University of Michigan, she is working on her book project tentatively entitled: “Bagisu Men Don’t Cry: Imbalu and the Construction of Masculinities in Uganda”.

She received her Ph.D. in History from Northwestern University in Evanston in 2011and worked as a Research Fellow at the Makerere Institute of Social Research at Makerere University before taking up appointment in the Department of History.

Dr. Khanakwa won a postdoctoral fellowship of the American Council of Learned Societies on the African Humanities Program (2013/2014) and an individual grant from the African Peacebuilding Network of the Social Science Research Council in 2015.

She has carried out research in eastern Uganda on masculinities, ethnicity and land struggles. She has contributed a chapter in Doing Conceptual History in Africa (2016) edited by Fleisch and Stephens.

Abstract
This paper explores circumcision controversies in early postcolonial Uganda where several cases of forcible circumcision were reported among the Gisu in the eastern part of the country. In contrast to existing literature that explains the centrality of imbalu (male circumcision) in marking the transition from boyhood to manhood, this paper examines why some “boys” defied the cultural requirement on one hand, and why Gisu “ethnic patriots” enforced it, on the other. First, the paper argues that Gisu elites especially those employed in the civil service rejected imbalu because they considered it irrelevant to their needs and identity in postcolonial Uganda. Through education and employment, they were confident that they had acquired alternative manhood. Secondly, the paper argues that the ethnic patriots pursued and forcibly circumcised defaulters because they wanted to protect the deep rooted cultural institution that defined the Gisu as a moral community. And because they were worried about their numbers and place in Independent Uganda, they deployed forcible circumcision in order to “tribalize” the uncircumcised and promote social discipline, moral order as well as respectability. They feared that deviant actions such as rejecting imbalu threatened the social fabric and existence of the Gisu who were a cultural minority in the multi-ethnic Ugandan nation-state.

Feb
14
Wed 12:00 PM

Adeline Masquelier: The Taste of Prayer

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When: Wednesday, February 14, 2018
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM  

Where: 620 Library Place, Room 106, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: - Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Program of African Studies   847.491.7323

Group: Program of African Studies

Co-Sponsor(s):
International Studies
Institute for the Study of Islamic Thought in Africa

Category: Lectures & Meetings

Description:

Join the Program of African Studies for our weekly lunch and lecture.

Cosponsored by the Institute for the Study of Islamic Thought in Africa (ISITA)

ISITA seminar: The Taste of Prayer: Making Sense of Sufi Devotional Practice in Niger

Adeline Masquelier, Anthropology, Tulane University

 

Feb
21
Wed 12:00 PM

Sandra Greene: Embracing Happenstance

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When: Wednesday, February 21, 2018
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM  

Where: 620 Library Place, Room 106, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: - Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Program of African Studies   847.491.7323

Group: Program of African Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings

Description:

Join the Program of African Studies for our weekly lunch and lecture.

Embracing Happenstance: An Academic Journey

Sandra Greene, Stephen ’59 and Madeline ’60 Anbinder Professor of African History and Chair, Department of History, Cornell University

Abstract:
Many academics spend their entire careers examining a particular topic in all its variations. There are scholars, for example, who focus solely on gender or on the American civil war. Others choose to explore a more wide range of topics and themes. As someone in the latter group, my work has ranged from a focus on gender and ethnic relations, to an examination of the history sacred sites, to analyses of West African narratives of slavery. Despite these seemingly diverse topics, it is still possible to identify some unifying interests that link these different areas of enquiry. Thus, as part of its 70th anniversary celebration, I will share how the Program of African Studies and the people who happened to be at Northwestern at the time I studied there influenced my own theoretical and methodological approaches to the topics I have examined throughout my career.

Bio:
Sandra E. Greene is the Stephen ’59 and Madeline ’60 Anbinder Professor of African History at Cornell University and an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences as well as the Ambrosiana Academy in Milan, Italy. Her research interests have ranged widely, from the history of gender and ethnic relations, to the history of religious sacred sites and indigenous slavery in Africa. Her single authored books include Gender, Ethnicity and Social Change on the Upper Slave Coast (1996), Sacred Sites and the Colonial Encounter (2002), West African Narratives of Slavery (2011) and Slave Owners of West Africa: Decision-making in the Age of Abolition (2017). Her co-edited collections include the five-volume New Encyclopedia of Africa (2008), The Bitter Legacy: African Slavery Past and Present (2013), African Voices on Slavery and the Slave Trade, Vols. 1 and 2 (2013 and 2016), and African Slaves, African Masters: Politics, Memories, Social Life (2017). She is also the author of many articles in various journals and edited collections. Her research has been supported most recently by Cornell University, the National Humanities Center where she held the John Hope Franklin Senior Researcher Fellowship, and by the Mellon Foundation.

Among the courses she teaches are: “African Economic Development Histories” (which explores the history of economic development in Africa from precolonial times to the present as understood by historians, economists, and political scientists); “West Africa and the West” (which explores the history of West Africa’s relations with Europe and the Americas during the era of the Atlantic slave trade); and “Enslaved Then and Now”. She has also served in a number of administrative positions including Chair of the History Department at Cornell University (2001-2005) and (2016 to present) as well as President of the African Studies Association (USA).