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African Studies Centre calendar and newsitems
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African Studies Centre calendar and newsitems
ASC events
  • Festival Voice4Thought in Leiden

    Logo Voice4thoughtVoice4Thought (V4T) is an artistic-academic project of Leiden University and the African Studies Centre based on inspiring voices from all over the world. These voices do not tell stories of crisis and misery, but of strength and change! To bring these stories to a larger audience, the project organizes the Voice4Thought festival, from 24 - 29 August 2015, at various locations in Leiden.

    The attack on Charlie Hebdo in early January 2015, has shocked the western world. It has made Europeans rethink their position in the global situation of increasing contradictions between social, ethnic and religious groups. The Voice4Thought project tells a story in which the human powers behind political and social change in Africa and Europe are central. It provides a platform for enthused individuals from central Africa and the Netherlands to bring their thoughts about these often yet invisible changes to a wide public.

    We combine art, film, social media and academic research to reach this public and effectuate a dialogue between Africa and Europe. In the last week of August 2015, we organise a festival consisting of a variety of events. Three of our voices, namely Didier Lalaye, Yaya Sarria from Chad and Pangmashi Yenkong from Cameroon, will be there to engage in a dialogue with various target audiences in the Netherlands.

    Throughout this week we will show films and host an academic debate in the Lipsius building of Leiden University. On Saturday evening, our artists will provide an evening programme in collaboration with Antilounge (the Netherlands) in music venue the Gebr. De Nobelin Leiden. The red thread throughout the week is a 3D installation in which a student of the Royal Academy of Art (KABK) reveals his/her interpretation of the themes around V4T and offers the audience the chance to immerse themselves in the world of V4T.

    The following films, all made by African filmmakers, will be screened (venue Room 019, Lipsius building, Leiden):

    24 August, 17.00: Un homme qui crie (2010)
    26 August, 17.00: The Ambassador (2011)
    27 August, 1700: Le Président (2013)

    Here you'll find the complete programme.

    An introduction of the V4T project can be found on the VPRO website (Dutch) and on the project website (Dutch).

    This project is carried by Leiden Global, Leiden University, African Studies Centre, IICD (Institute for Information, Communication and Development), and supported in collaboration with Radio Netherlands Worldwide (World broadcast), Leiden municipality, Both Ends, CRASH (Centre de Recherche en Anthropologie et Sciences Humaines, Ndjaména, Chad), Dakar University and Langaa (Research and publication centre in Cameroon).

    V4T Festival

    Art, film, social media and academic research are combined to reach this audience and to facilitate a dialogue between Africa and Europe. The Voice4Thought festival presents several events, in which the ‘voices’ of Croquemort (slammer, Chad), Yaya Sarria (dancer, Chad), Pangmashi Yenkong (human rights lawyer, Cameroon) and Smockey (rapper and representative of Balai Citoyen, Burkina Faso), enter into a dialogue with various target groups in The Netherlands. Movie screenings and an academic debate are presented in the Lipsius building of Leiden University in the week of 24-29 August. On Saturday night the V4T artists present an evening program in collaboration with Antilounge (The Hague) in music venue Gebr. de Nobel (Leiden). A 3D installation by a student of the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague (KABK) ties the different elements of the festival together. This installation, an interpretation of the V4T themes by the artist, invites the audience to enter the world of V4T.

    The project V4T

    The terror attack on Charlie Hebdo, early January 2015, shocked the western world. It forced people in Europe to reconsider their own position in the worldwide situation of increasing tensions between social, ethnic, and religious groups. The Voice4Thought project tells the stories of people who want to use the Internet (social media, websites etc.) to enter into a global dialogue. The V4T project uses an artistic approach to bring the voices of these people, each with their own viewpoint and approach, to a larger audience. The aim is to offer a platform to think collectively about alternative ways to relate to each other and live together.

    Website as dialogue

    The website of Voice4Thought is meant to share all these interesting and beautiful stories. In collaboration with our researchers the themes of the individuals behind the voices are explored, creating an alternative approach to ‘academics’ in which the sharing of information with the audience is key. The website will soon include a forum on which we welcome all questions, commentaries, recommendations and dialogues!

    The Voice4Thought Project is part of the research program ‘Connecting in Times of Duress’ and is organized in collaboration with Leiden University, ASC, LeidenGlobal and Both Ends. Media partners are RNW media, VPRO Buitenland, The Broker and One World.

    Event date: 
    2015-08-24 00:00:00 to 2015-08-29 00:00:00
    Seminar location: 
    Several locations
    Voeg een bestand met extra informatie toe (PDF): 


  • New photo exhibition at the ASC: The Spiritual Highway: Religious World Making in Megacity Lagos


    The Spiritual Highway: Religious World Making in Megacity Lagos
    Photographs by Akintunde Akinleye, curated by Marloes Janson

    Together with the award-winning Nigerian photographer Akintunde Akinleye, anthropologist Dr. Marloes Janson hit the road in the summer of 2013 to map the most important and busiest Nigerian road - the 120-kilometer long Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. While it has failed as the artery linking the north and the south of Nigeria, the highway has succeeded as a stage for the performance of public religiosity to the extent that it can be described as a 'Spiritual Highway'. It owes this name to the fact that over the past three decades numerous Christian and Muslim prayer camps have sprung up along the highway. Despite the sharp division between Muslims and Christians in Nigerian society, the photographs visualize that the prayer camps have much in common in terms of both activities and discourse. The convergence of Christian and Muslim elements makes the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway a true crossroads. At this crossroads prayer camps act as road-builders in rendering meaningful the unstable flux of life in megacity Lagos. 

    The exhibition can be seen in the ASC Library (ground floor) and in the corridors at the third floor from 1 July until 30 September. An exhibition catalogue (€ 7,50) is available.

    At the ASC seminar on 17 September, Dr. Janson will discuss the conversion of Nigeria’s former capital, Lagos – often described as an ‘apocalyptic megacity’ – into a Prayer City.


    Akintunde Akinleye Akinleye is an award winning photographer who lives in Lagos and works for Reuters in Nigeria. He was awarded a prize in the prestigious World Press Photo contest in the Netherlands in 2007 with an iconic photograph of a man rinsing soot from his face at the scene of an oil pipeline explosion in Lagos, December 2006. It was the beauty of a tragedy which claimed the lives of 269 people that made the official signage of the 19th edition of international photojournalism festival in perpignan, France in 2007. An award fellow of the National Geographic Society- All Roads photo project, Akinleye has attended conferences and seminars in editorial and documentary photography in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Lagos. He was a resident fellow of the Thami Mnyele Art foundation in Amsterdam and has had his work exhibited in Washington, Los Angeles, New Mexico, Lagos, Amsterdam, Graz, Bamako,Madrid, Munich, U.K and Pordenone in Italy.

    Marloes Janson, SOAS London Dr Janson's research is at the intersection of anthropology and religion. West Africa (the Gambia, Senegal and Nigeria) are her ethnographic areas of specialization. She has conducted ethnographic research in the Gambia since 1996 on various research projects relating to popular culture, oral history, Islamic reform, gender and youth. In 2010 Dr Janson switched her research field to Lagos, Nigeria, where she is exploring the emergence of Chrislam, a religious movement that fuses Christian and Muslim beliefs and practices. Her research interests are reflected in her teaching. Before joining SOAS in 2012, she has been a researcher at the Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) in Berlin.

    Event date: 
    2015-07-01 00:00:00 to 2015-09-30 00:00:00


  • Underground Politics in Turbulent Times: Social Dynamics of Gold Mining Projects in Burkina Faso

    Burkina Faso is a young but prolific terrain for industrial gold mining projects, with ten mines built in the last ten years. Gold mines are built in the vicinity of local populations that must organize their livelihoods under difficult ecological circumstances. Only now are the effects of industrial gold mining becoming clear to local administrators and populations. Resistance to mining is growing rapidly, particularly in the current political climate in Burkina. This seminar will examine a case study,  detailing the process from the arrival of an exploration company to the building of a mine through to future plans for building extensions. It will explore the company-community engagements and relations between mining companies (junior exploration companies and major mine builders). It will use the analyses to comment upon the current public debate on large-scale gold mining in Burkina Faso in the transitional, post-Compaore period. It also aims to identify key aspects for improving the way in which companies engage with  groups in civil society that are affected by their presence.

    Event date: 
    2015-09-24 00:00:00
    Start and end time: 
    15.30 - 17.00
    Seminar location: 
    Pieter de la Courtgebouw / Faculty of Social Sciences, Wassenaarseweg 52, 2333 AK Leiden
    More about the speaker: 

    Dr. Sabine Luning is a lecturer at the Institute for Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology, Leiden University. Her PhD research dealt with the social dynamics of ritual practices in Burkina Faso, a topic at the crossroads of religious ideas, politics and social identities. She continued studying the contemporary situation of chiefs as well as local perceptions of the natural environment, in particular how these are shaped in wider social arenas such as national elections and development projects. Ever since her first professional experience as anthropologist in a large DGIS project, she has retained an interest in the social relations, power dynamics and organizational culture of development initiatives.

    Seminar room: 
    Room 3A06


  • Seminar: The Spiritual Highway: Religious World Making in Megacity Lagos

    The Spiritual Highway

    This seminar, which accompanies the new exhibition (1 July - 30 September) at the ASC with photographs taken by Akintunde Akinleye, maps the conversion of Nigeria’s former capital, Lagos – often described as an ‘apocalyptic megacity’ – into a Prayer City. Since the late 1980s, numerous Christian and Muslim prayer camps have sprung up along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. Subsequently, this highway has grown into a stage for the performance of public religiosity, earning it the moniker, the ‘Spiritual Highway’. Visiting prayer camps as a means of solving problems related to health and wealth occurs on a grand scale in Nigeria, characterizing the Pentecostal upsurge. Muslims have responded to the Pentecostalization of Nigeria’s cityscape by establishing their own prayer camps. The photographs shed light on the mutual borrowing of prayer styles and images between Christian and Muslim prayer camps. In order to grasp the ways in which religion is ‘lived’ in daily life, we must bridge the division of labour between scholars studying Christianity and those studying Islam, bringing the two religious traditions together in a comparative framework.

    Event date: 
    2015-09-17 00:00:00
    Start and end time: 
    15.30 - 17.00
    Seminar location: 
    Pieter de la Courtgebouw / Faculty of Social Sciences, Wassenaarseweg 52, 2333 AK Leiden
    Speaker and institute: 
    More about the speaker: 

    Marloes JansonDr Janson's research is at the intersection of anthropology and religion. West Africa (the Gambia, Senegal and Nigeria) are her ethnographic areas of specialization. She has conducted ethnographic research in the Gambia since 1996 on various research projects relating to popular culture, oral history, Islamic reform, gender and youth. In 2010 Dr Janson switched her research field to Lagos, Nigeria, where she is exploring the emergence of Chrislam, a religious movement that fuses Christian and Muslim beliefs and practices. Her research interests are reflected in her teaching. Before joining SOAS in 2012, she has been a researcher at the Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) in Berlin.

    ASC email adress: 


  • PhD defence Margot Leegwater: Sharing Scarcity: Land Access and Social Relations in Southeast Rwanda

    Margot Leegwater will defend her PhD thesis Sharing Scarcity: Land Access and Social Relations in Southeast Rwanda at the VU University.

    Promotor: Prof. Jan Abbink
    Co-promotor: Dr. Sandra Evers

    You are all very welcome!

     

     

    Event date: 
    2015-09-16 00:00:00
    Start and end time: 
    15.45
    Seminar location: 
    VU University, De Boelelaan 1081, Amsterdam
    Seminar room: 
    Aula



 

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