Melbourne – 2015

21st Century Tensions and Transformation in Africa

38th AFSAAP Conference – 2015

Deakin University, Melbourne City Centre, Level 3 – 550 Bourke Street – Victoria – Australia

28th-30th October

Conference Proceedings

21st Century Tensions and Transformations in Africa: The 2016 – AFSAAP Annual Conference Proceedings –  ISBN – 978-0-9942689-1-4.

Edited by Max Kelly, Deakin University, publication date February 2016.

The below papers were all presented at the 2015 AFSAAP Annual Conference, and have all been peer reviewed. They are listed here in Alphabetical order of the Author’s last name.

All conference abstracts were peer reviewed and are available in the attached publication.

Adusei-Asante, Kwadwo and Peter Hancock – Addressing Aid Externalities: A Study of the World Bank’s Community-Based Projects in Ghana – .Edith Cowan University

Bacon, Eugen – Up Close from Afar (Creative Writing as Research) – Swinburne University of Technology

Budge, Tim – Transforming Informal Settlements in 21st Century Southern Africa – Deakin UniversityGebrekidan, Abay – “African-Australian” Identity in the process of construction: an exploratory Analysis of its Imagery and Power in view of African background youth in Metropolitan Regions of Melbourne, Australia – La Trobe University

Burke, Jean – Linguistic complexity and diversity amongst Congolese diaspora in Australia: implications for languages services – Australian Catholic University, and Freelance Swahili Interpreter

Deng, Santino Atem – South Sudanese Family Dynamics and Parenting Practices in Australia – Victoria University

Gebrekidan, Abay – “African-Australian” Identity in the process of construction: an exploratory Analysis of its Imagery and Power in view of African background youth in Metropolitan Regions of Melbourne, Australia – La Trobe University

Gerrand, Vivian – Mogadishu on the mend: Representing post-war Somalia and Somalis in the 21st century – University of Melbourne

Holmes, Tass – Use of traditional healing, including herbal medicine, may promote wellbeing in Africa, consistent with the realisation of post-2015 development goals – University of Melbourne

Hoogenraad, Henrike – What it Takes to be a Man: Understanding African Masculinities in the Context of African-Australian Marriage Migration – University of Adelaide

Johnson, Lineo Rose and Quan-Baffour, Kofi Poku – The African Philosophy of “Ubuntu” and Correctional Education in South Africa: A case study  – University of South Africa

Johnston, Lauren – Follow the Maritime Silk Road: Survey of Contemporary Change in China-Africa Economics – University of Melbourne

Kahssay, Hagos Nigussie – Indigenous Communication Channels and their Role in Promoting Food Security in Ethiopia – Centre for Communication and Social Change – The University of Queensland

Kenny, Christina – Even if they are going to fail, we are going to fail with them: The hopes and realities of women’s suffrage under the 2010 Kenyan Constitution – Australian National University

Lewis, Tony – Analysis in African Music – Ghosts of the Past, Promises of the Future – University of New England

Lyons, Tanya – Understanding Contemporary Africa in Australia and New Zealand: Reflections on the African Continent – AFSAAP President and Flinders University

Madubuko, Christian – From Craft-Produced Shotguns to AK-47: Lessons from Nigeria’s Niger Delta Conflict – Univesrsity of New England

Marine, Jane – A Preliminary Comparative Study of Public Participation Acts in Kenya: A Case Study of Meru, Elgeyo/Marakwet & Machakos Counties – University of Canterbury

Matimba, Gibson – International Teacher Migration: Double-Edged Experiences of African Teachers in the Diaspora and the Implication for the Source Countries – Charles Sturt University

Mertens, Charlotte – Sexual Violence in Democratic Republic of Congo: Colonial Traces, Tactile Memories and Present Reconfigurations – University of Melbourne

Olliff, Louise – From resettled refugees to humanitarian actors: Exploring the role and potential of diaspora community-based organisations in protracted refugee situations in Africa – University of Melbourne

Rametse, Mochekoe Stephen – The significance of the Freedom Charter in the ideological debates within the ruling ANC Alliance in South Africa.

Thompson, Naomi – Surviving vs. Living: The Importance of Resilience in the Transformative Redefinition of Ghanaian Breast Cancer Survivors – Macquarie University

Tuwe, Kudakwashe – African Oral Tradition Paradigm of Storytelling as a Methodology Framework: Employment Experiences for African communities in New Zealand – Auckland University of Technology

Udah, Hyacinth – Understanding the Vulnerability of African Immigrant – Griffith University

Ware, Helen – Learning to Share: Alternatives to Winner Takes All, Loser Keeps Nothing in the African Post-Conflict Context – University of New England

Williams, Sarah -“R3presentin` Inclusive Communities:” What Does Social Inclusion Mean in Australia When You Obviously Stand Out? – OASES Graduate School

Wilson, Madeleine – Twenty-First Century ‘Corporonialism’: Corporate Politics and Globalisation in Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o’s Wizard of the Crow – UNSW Australia

Yak, Gabriel Bul and Jok, John Deng – The Socio-Economic and Political Impacts of the Internal Violence in South Sudan – University of Canberra and University

Presentations Only

Binns, Tony; Cadzow, Hana & Nel, Etienne – Ensuring food security in post-conflict Freetown, Sierra Leone: Recognising the significance of urban and peri-urban agriculture.  – University of Otago

Burke, Jean – Trafficking and anti-trafficking partnerships in Africa: trading in body parts – Australian Catholic University

Chikulo, Bornwell – Local government service delivery and xenophobic attacks in South Africa  – North-West University, South Africa

Dobson, Susan – The Reorientation of Peace Ontology in Post-conflict Rwanda 1994-2014 – University of South Australia

El-Gack, Nawal – The Case of South Sudan Conflict and its Impact on Sudan  – University of Canberra

Farrugia, Claire  – Entering the Public: Private Acts of Sharing in a Marketised Welfare State – Macquarie University

Fernandez, Bina  – The politics of forced repatriation: Ethiopian migrants to Saudi Arabia  – University of Melbourne

Flore, Jacinthe – Postcolonial Hauntings: Sexuality and Reform in Mauritius – La Trobe University

Gitau, Lydia Wanja  – Peace in My Father’s World: Trauma Interventions and Peacebuilding for Survivors of Conflict and Mass violence  – University of Sydney

Gobey, Laura – Young African migrant women in Australia: using an intersectionality approach in examining this diverse cohort – Deakin University

Hynd, Alasdair  – The Containment of Contagion: the Western response to Ebola in West Africa and the discourse of epidemic disease – University of South Australia

Jackson, Ruth – Will the Sustainable Development Goals make a difference to maternal health in Ethiopia?  – Deakin University

Johansson, Patrik – Resilient Conflict in West Africa  – Umeå University, and University of Otago

Kawooya, Davis – Evaluating International Interventions in Northern Uganda using a Human Security Approach – University of Notre Dame

Kayeye, Mireille – The Trafficking of Women for Forced Labour in Australia: Missing African Voices. – REAVI, Bujumbura

Kigotho, Mutuota – Economic and political domination: four Kenyan families. – University of New England

Langat, Kiprono – Gateway to democratic transformation: Enhancing access and participation in higher education for refugee background students – Charles Sturt University

Losoncz, Ibolya – What Building a New Life in Australia (BNLA) looks like for humanitarian migrants from Africa? – Australian National University

Lucas, David – Australia giveth and Australia taketh away: aid and investment in Africa 2008-2015 – Australian National University

Mabefam, Matthew Gmalifo – Mental Health and Witchcraft Confessions in Accra, Ghana: Public Perceptions and the Agency of Witch/wizard in Ghana – University

Malu, Linus – The International Criminal Court (ICC) and the Peace Process in Kenya – University of New England

March, Rebecca – Movement, Music and Nation-Building: Valorising Africa through the ‘Invented Traditions’ of West African Dance in Ghana and Capoeira in Brazil – La Trobe University

Marembo, Miriam H. & Inder, Brett – Short-term and long-term child health: Is there an association and what are the implications on targeting the food insecure? – Monash University

Marembo, Miriam H. & Inder, Brett – Capacity building and the attainment of food security: Why do smallholder farmers drop out of drip irrigation projects in Mutasa and Mutoko districts in Zimbabwe? – Monash University

Masuku, Jesta  – Marginalized Voices and Zimbabwe’s Socio-Economic Development: Prospects and Challenges for the Post-2015 Development Agenda – University of New England

Mbenga, Bernard K. – The conversion of the Bakgatla ba Kgafela Community of the Rustenburg District, South Africa, to Christianity and its impact, 1866–1931 – North-West University, South Africa

McBrien, Jody L. – Women Leaders in Post-War Uganda – University of South Florida

McDougall, Russell – Felix Norman Roth, Henry Ling Roth and the Benin Bronzes: A Brief Museological In The Roth Family, Anthropology, and Colonial Administration – University of New England

McNamara, Thomas – Witchcraft, jealousy and traditional healing: intersecting and contradictory narratives – University of Melbourne

Mensah Abrampah, David Akwasi – Archaeology of Danish Plantation Agriculture and Historical Heritage at Dodowa – Archaeology, La Trobe University
Kirby, James – Breaking ‘“APARTHEID” Amongst Batswana’: Botswana’s Vision for Non-Racial Democracy, 1960-1966 – La Trobe University

Mickler, David – Canberra, the Council and the Continent: Australia–Africa relations through the UNSC – University of Western Australia

Mickler, David – Weak state, regional power, global player? Nigeria and the response to Boko Haram – University of Western Australia

Mphande, Charles, Clovis Mwamba and Cynthia McKenzie – Ancestors and the politics of reality – the role of BaLuba Congolese proverb and belonging to place – Independent scholar and Victoria University

Mturi, Akim J. – Repositioning South Africa for implementing the 2030 agenda for sustainable development: A demographic perspective – North-West University

Muparutsa, Fadzai & Kenny, Christina – An imported virus that will spread across Africa?: Advocating for gender identity and sexuality rights at the Africa Commission for Human and People’s Rights – Australian National University

Mwanri, Lillian – Intergenerational conflicts. A curse of cultural girth? A case of African migrants in South Australia – Flinders University

Nakhid, Camille – “Just because you are a police officer, because you have a shield…where is your humanity? They don’t have that when it comes to us” – African youth in New Zealand and their experiences with the police and the justice system – Auckland University of Technology

Nest, Michael – Letting go – and other negotiations around representations of oral history: a case study of a Twa (Pygmy) from the D.R. Congo – Independent Scholar and Researcher

Ngatia, Lucy Nyathogora – International Standards and Food Safety – A Development Agenda for Third World Countries? – University of Adelaide

Pijovic, Nikola – Drivers of change in Australia’s foreign policy towards Africa 1996-2015 – Australian National University

Quan-Baffour, Kofi Poku – Non-Formal Education In Indigenous Trades For South African Youth: Agenda For Socio-Economic And Political Stability? – University of South Africa

Sheridan, Garth – Made in Lisbon: Kuduro Remixed – RMIT University

Sithole, Tendayi – V-Y Mudimbe and the paradigm of difference: A Meditation – University of South Africa

Stratford, Maria – Africa for Africans at Home and Abroad – RMIT University

Thornton, Alec – Food Security in African Cities: can urban agriculture produce? – University of New South Wales

Towers, Lorraine – The regionalisation of official language and education: decolonising Ethiopia? – University of Sydney

Tuwe, Kudakwashe – The challenges of health promotion within African communities in New Zealand – Auckland University of Technology

Tweneboah, Seth – Banishment As a Form of Decolonising Traditional Societies? A Ghanaian Case Study – Victoria University of Wellington

von Veh, Karen – Christian imagery as a reflection of transforming politics in South African Art – University of Johannesburg

Woldeyes, Yirga – Beyond decoloniality: Towards the creative incorporation of diverse knowledge-traditions in Africa – Curtin University

Conference Program and Abstracts

AFSAAP 2015 Final Conference Program (updated 23 October 2015)

AFSAAP 2015 Conference Abstracts (updated 23 October 2015)


The year 2015 marks the transition from the UN Millennium Development Goals to the new Sustainable Development Goals and in recent years, Africa has been portrayed as being at a cross-roads in terms of development. The continent will be carefully watched as African leaders and communities tackle these newly defined development aspirations. The Economist has dubbed Africa a ‘rising’ and ‘hopeful’ continent. African economies are expected to grow at an impressive average of 6% per year over the next decade and poverty is declining, albeit slowly, from 57% in 1990 to 49% in 2010. Yet, the continent continues to face crises that commentators argue threaten these gains. Ebola has emerged as one of the most significant humanitarian challenges of the last century. The global financial crisis, violent political conflicts, a highly contested food crisis, and a rapid increase in global land grabs also present themselves as threats to development and ‘progress’.

This conference aimed to explore these tensions, and the nature of transformation in Africa and the African diaspora. Panels and papers were encouraged to explore competing visions of Africa. On the one hand, Africa can be seen as the bread basket of the globe, a resource-rich continent brimming with entrepreneurs, innovators, and creative talent, and ripe for rapid industrialisation, economic growth and democratisation. On the other, continued visions of Africa as the dark continent of disease, conflict and scarcity persist. In challenging these competing visions, panels and papers are encouraged to ask what transformations the continent is experiencing. At the same time, panelists asked the question who benefits from such transformations, paying particular attention to the inequalities in distribution of the risks and rewards of economic, social, political, cultural and technological change.

Postgraduate Day 28 Oct 2015

The Annual AFSAAP Postgraduate Workshop was held on October 28th 2015

Each year AFSAAP supports postgraduate research into African Studies with the $3500 postgraduate prizes, and for peer-reviewed publication in the conference proceedings. AFSAAP is also pleased to offer travel grants of up to $500 to cover flights and conference registration for selected postgraduate students. Click here for details.

Conference Registration and Fees


Participants must register for the conference by 1 October in order to be included in the final program.

Registrations for AFSAAP 2015  (closed)

Full Registration 3 days October 28-30th 2015

Student and unwaged concession rate

Conference Dinner

Conference Fees include AFSAAP membership for the following year.


Conference presenters travelling from overseas are reminded to apply for an Australian visa EARLY. Visas can take a number of months to be processed. Should you require a letter in support of your visa application, please write to

Transport and Accommodation

Please arrange your own accommodation and transport.