Africa: Politics and Societies South of the Sahara

Talking about Space in Africa

Posted in African Politics, Global Africa by ruben eberlein on April 2, 2009

A major conference on African issues under the motto ‘Respacing Africa’ will take place in Leipzig, Germany, between 4 and 7 June 2009. The Third European Conference on African Studies (ECAS) will host some 1,100 academics and interested persons to discuss ‘dynamic changes in Africa from a variety of multi-disciplinary perspectives’, says Ulf Engel, Professor of African Politics at the University of Leipzig.

‘These approaches will include new political geography, history, anthropology, sociology and political science’, explains Engel, board member of Aegis (Africa-Europe Group for Interdisciplinary Studies). ‘Among the many highlights will be an opening address by Volkswagen Foundation CEO Dr. Wilhelm Krull on African Studies in a European space of higher education, a concert by Zimbabwean mbira legend Stella Chiweshe and a series of African documentary movies.’

It will be difficult to make a choice from 158 or more panels, but I tried. Here are some sessions that sound interesting to me: ‘Cross Border Trade in Africa: Indigenous Development or Criminality?’ (Titeca/Meagher), ‘Navigating Urban Space’ (Vigh/Utas), ‘States, Diasporas, Citizenship: New Forms of Political Subjectivity in Africa’ (Schramm/Krause), ‘Spatialities of Hip Hop Music in Africa’ (Mbaye), ‘Topographies of Rule’ (Hönke), ‘From Nation-building to The Politics of Belonging’ (Banegas/Cutolo/Geschiere), ‘Youth as a Political Factor in Post-colonial Africa’ (Englert), ‘Critical Perspectives on Interventionism in Africa’ (Bachmann), ‘Violent Actors and the Re-shaping of Political Orders in Africa’ (Bauer), ‘Fragmented and Fluid Urbanities’ (Hentschel).

This is the third conference organised on behalf of Aegis. The two past gatherings in London (2005) and Leiden (2007) were characterised by high levels of academic standards as well as many relevant and exciting contributions from very different viewpoints on politics, economics and societies in Africa. ECAS 4 will be held in 2011 in Uppsala, Sweden.

For details and registration visit the website of the University of Leipzig.

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  1. […] by ruben eberlein on June 3, 2009 Tomorrow, a conference on African issues under the motto ‘Respacing Africa’ will take off in Leipzig, Germany, for four days. The Third European Conference on African Studies […]


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