NSW – 2023 (May18th-19th)

NSW – 2023 (May18th-19th)

The African Studies Association of Australasia and the Pacific (AFSAAP) is a network of academics, students, consultants, activists, diplomats, artists, community leaders, and others who share a mutual interest in the promotion of African Studies in Australasia and the Pacific region. AFSAAP was founded in 1978 and this will be the association’s 40th Annual Conference. Taking place on the Indigenous lands of the Burramattagal people of the Darug Nation, in the heart of Western Sydney, this conference aims to examine the relationship and inter-connections between African Studies and the Global South, and to build new directions and global solidarities for a shared research agenda.

Locating African Studies in the Global South: Fostering New Directions and Global Solidarities

May 18th-19th 2023

 

AFSAAP The African Studies Association of Australasia and the Pacific

 

CALL FOR PAPERS

 

The terms ‘Global South’ and ‘Third World’ are often used interchangeably to describe a broad political project rather than a narrow geographic grouping. Balakrishnan Rajagopal argues that the concept of the ‘Third World’ remains valid in the post-Cold War era for exposing ‘the hierarchical ordering of the international community’ and ‘for locating the roots of this hierarchy in the history of colonialism’.[1] What animates the Global South, then, is an anti-colonial, anti-racist, decolonial opposition to a historically constituted ‘Global North’ that is tied to global imperial hierarchies and the racialisation of non-European states and people. We pose the question: what does it mean to place African Studies in the Global South and the Global South in African Studies? How might African Studies strengthen solidarities with scholars and projects of the Global South including projects of the Global South in the Global North?

This conference will map, explore, and build on a range of current debates about the relationship between African Studies and the Global South. We hope to enrich these debates by taking stock of where we are in the current juncture in African Studies and how we might renew attention to this relationship and set new direction for a shared research agenda. We welcome papers on any topic related to the inter-connections between African Studies and the Global South. Possible topics include, but are by no means limited to the following:

  • What is the state of African Studies today? Where and how is African Studies discussed in Global South scholarship and how is the Global South discussed in African Studies?
  • How might African Studies contribute to anti-colonial and decolonial projects of the Global South?
  • What impact have grassroots social movements, such as the Black Lives Matter movement, and the Global Climate Movement had on African Studies?
  • What are African Studies’ complicities in colonial and imperial legacies?
  • What does Africa’s presence in international institutions such as the International Criminal Court tell us about the limits and possibilities of resisting global hierarchies? How should we engage with calls for epistemic justice in response to colonial legacies and hierarchies of knowledge? In particular, how might we engage with current global initiatives to decolonise science both in terms of the creation of scientific knowledge and its dissemination?
  • How should African Studies engage with the urgent demands of the climate crisis given its roots in colonial legacies and disproportionate impacts on the Global South?
  • How should we approach African Studies as a site of pedagogy and teaching? What has been the experience of teaching African Studies?
  • What institutional and funding pressures impact on teaching and research on Africa in the diaspora and more generally? How might we maximise education access and scholarship opportunities for African students wishing to study at universities located in the Global North?

We welcome and encourage interdisciplinary projects, empirical studies, and different methodological and theoretical approaches including, decoloniality, postcolonial theory, Third World approaches, political economy, subaltern theory, and critical race theory. We invite papers that engage with the relationship between African Studies and the Global South. We invite participants to contribute theoretically and methodologically innovative and empirically grounded papers, panels and presentations that enhance our understanding of this relationship and its inter-connections. Graduate students and early career scholars are especially encouraged to submit an abstract.

Individual papers:

Send an abstract of no more than 250 words, together with a short biography (200 words).

Panels, Thematic Conversations, and Roundtables:

Panels
Send an overall abstract of no more than 250 words, together with a 250 word abstract for each paper. Also include names of chair and participants.

Thematic Conversations
Thematic Conversations extend on-going conversations among scholars while exploring new trends and approaches. They provide an intellectual venue for like-minded scholars to continue discussions that may have started before and engage in an academic exchange in an informal structure and with an audience. These might not be formal presentations but must have a chair, participants, and a topic. Send an overall abstract of no more than 250 words, together with a 250 word abstract for each paper, name(s) of chair and participants.

Roundtable
Roundtables provide groups of scholars an opportunity to discuss an issue, share opinions, or just to brainstorm through informed discussion and debate within the wider or the particular fields of scholarship. The roundtable format provides and open discussion where the chair and participants engage themselves and audience in discussion. Send an overall abstract of no more than 250 words, together with a 250 word abstract for each paper, name(s) of chair and participants.

All papers will be peer reviewed.

Abstracts of proposed papers, panels, roundtables should be sent to the following email address secretary@afsaap.org.au by 20 January 2023. Late proposals for papers will be considered only if space is available. All proposals will be peer reviewed by the Conference Program Committee. Registration and conference fees must be paid before presenters will be placed in the formal conference program.

[1] B. Rajagopal, Locating the Third World in Cultural Geography (1998-1999) 15 Third World Legal Studies 1, 3.

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