Call for Papers. African Theatre 10: Media and Performance

African Theatre, an international annual journal, is seeking articles, reviews or reports for AT10.  These should be in the field of performance and media.  The editors interpret this topic in a broad sense.  It could thus cover drama and performance embedded in the media, such as radio drama, TV drama/performance, documentaries, Reality TV, or cinema and video drama/ performance.  Alternatively it could involve the incorporation of mixed media techniques (such as slides, video clips or “canned” music) into “live” performance.  The editors would be particularly interested in the use of New Media, such as cell-phone technology or the internet (e.g. through UTube, performance clips in blogs or group emails, or drama downloads to cell-phones).  Photographs are very welcome.

Articles may cover:

1) Aesthetic issues such as adaptations of literature or stage theatre/performance to media, issues of camera work, form, musical sound-tracks, animation, special effects, editing, characterization (stars!), mixed media, computerized choreography, intertextuality, genre, indigenizing African critical terminology/categories;

2) Production issues, such as the economics of production (sponsorship, private versus public versus NGO funding), gate-keeping/censorship/regulation, piracy, trade-offs between production values and cost-effectiveness/popularity, mapping production processes;

3) Reception issues, such as media effects, audiences (formal & informal), audience surveys and monitoring, mass and niche audiences, fans and sub-cultures, fanzines, internet fan chat-rooms & blogs, on-line community audiences, criticism (formal & informal), moral panics;

4) Theoretical/thematic issues, such as representation (gender, ethnicity, class, nationhood, religion, xenophobia, homophobia), globalization/glocalisation, Dissonance and cognitive theories, hybridity v authenticity, “Uses and Gratification” v Media Imperialism, African Performance Media histories.

Deadline for Abstracts: 15th May 2010

Deadline for Papers: 31st August 2010

Maximum number of words: 5000

Initially proposals for articles should be sent to Professor David Kerr (Guest Editor for AT10) at both addresses below:

African Theatre: General Notes on Presentation and Referencing of Articles and Documents

  1. Articles and reviews must adhere to the style guide, and should be submitted as a Word document.
  2. Please ensure that the styles you use are consistent. Avoid using bold type and ensure the document is presented in double spaced format. Please do not add page numbers or indent new paragraphs.
  3. UK or US spellings are acceptable as long as the contributor is consistent.
  4. Spacing needs to be consistent throughout. Single spacing after all punctuation. Initials should be spaced. A. P. Read not A.P. Read. Please ensure that you leave a space after the following contractions: ed., pp., p., vol. Please do not include stops at end of abbreviations where the last letter of the abbrev. is the last letter of the word: ie (ed. )is fine but (eds) Dr, Mr etc.
  5. For quotations use single inverted commas, unless it is a quotation within a quotation, in which case use the double quotation mark.
  6. Always provide material in the language of source first, then provide a translation. eg

    Integrated quotes: ‘Quotation, quotation, quotation’ (reference) (Translation, translation, translation).

    Extracted quotes:

Quotation, quotation, quotation. (reference)

(Translation, translation, translation.)

  1. For footnotes, please add note after the end of the sentence.

Please use the Harvard style for references

The Revisiting Modernization Conference

27-31 July 2009 at

University of Ghana-Legon

Conference Theme

Revisiting Modernization is an interdisciplinary array of activities that features an academic conference, art exhibition, creative writing competition, film screenings, and two keynote addresses to be held at the University of Ghana, Legon, from 27th - 31st July 2009. These activities, a collaboration between the Institute of African Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon and the African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group at the University of California, inaugurate an inclusive approach to thinking about the resonance of modernization in relation to the contemporary lexicon of globalization and the shifting parameters of development. This event is conceived as a forum with pre-circulated papers and contributions from a wide range of academics, policymakers, and artists from the African continent, North America, Europe, and beyond.

Current interactions on the African continent with the “Asian Miracle,” along with the Brazilian and Indian, among other modernities, and the vitality of an emerging decentered world economy—once relegated to the anonymity of the Third World—must be grounded in an examination of modernization, and the will towards a new political and social future. This emerging future not only engages with the past, through the evocation of ancestors and rites of passage, such as funerals, but also provides a discontinuous view of historical and social transformations. It is the reexamination of this developmental notion of modernization into a new future that we seek to open up through the activities organized around this conference.

This conference will be the first of three conferences to be held over a five-year period on the African continent (Ghana 2009, Senegal 2011, South Africa 2013) that include academic and public events, initiated by the African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group at the University of California.

Revisiting Modernization Conference, Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, July 27-31, 2009

Conference Conveners: Peter J. Bloom (UCSB); Takyiwaa Manuh (Director, Institute for African Studies, University of Ghana-Legon); Stephan F. Miescher (UCSB)

Revisiting Modernization Conference, Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, July 27-31, 2009

Conference Conveners:

Peter J. Bloom (University of California-Santa Barbara)

Takyiwaa Manuh (Director, Institute for African Studies, University of Ghana-Legon)

Stephan F. Miescher (University of California-Santa Barbara)


Sunday, July 26

Arrival of international participants

Monday, July 27

4:00-5:30 pm  Opening Remarks

      • Conference Conveners: Takyiwaa Manuh, Peter J. Bloom, and Stephan F. Miescher
      • Keynote Address I
      • Nana Wilson-Tagoe, SOAS, University of London (UK),
      • Re-engaging Cultures of Modernity in Contemporary African Literature

Chair: Takyiwaa Manuh, University of Ghana (Ghana)

5:30-6:15  Reception

6:30-7:30  Dance Performance (Dance Hall)

      • Misnomer, choreographed by Sheron Wray, University of California-Irvine (USA), with the Ghana Dance Ensemble

Tuesday, July 28

9:00-10:45 am  Panel I: Agents and Institutions of Modernization

        • Chair: Brigid Sackey, University of Ghana (Ghana)
        • Anne Hugon, Université Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne (France), Maternity and Modernity in the Gold Coast, 1920-1950
        • Jean Allman, Washington University (USA), Modeling Modernity: The Brief and Rather Strange Story of Kwame Nkrumah, an Ace Nazi Test Pilot named Hanna, and the Spectacle of Motorless Flight
        • Takyiwaa Manuh, University of Ghana (Ghana), Teaching African Studies in Africa: The Institute of African Studies at the University of Ghana
        • Cecilia Lynch, University of California-Irvine (USA), “Faithful Development”: Religious Ethical Interventions into Modernization Debates
        • Discussant: Donald Donham, University of California-Davis (USA)

10:45-11:15 am Coffee/tea break

      • 11:15-1:00 pm Panel II: Power and Infrastructure: Dams and the Urban Space
        • Chair: E.A.K. Kalitsi, Volta River Authority (Ghana)
        • Julia Tischler, University of Cologne (Germany), Kariba Dam and the ‘Big Push’ for Development: A Socio-Cultural History of a Technological Large-Scale Scheme as a Catalyst for “Modernity”
        • Stephan F. Miescher, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA), and Dzodzi Tsikata, University of Ghana (Ghana), Hydro-Power and the Promise of Modernity and Development in Ghana: Comparing the Akosombo and Bui Dam Projects
        • Thomas Yarrow, University of Wales (UK), Contesting “Development” and “Modernity”: the Volta Resettlement Project, Ghana
        • Sebastiaan Soeters, University of Leiden (Netherlands), “Out of Coverage Area”: The Origins of a Northern Urban Metropolis, Tamale 1907-1957
        • Discussant: Thomas Akabzaa, University of Ghana (Ghana)

1:00-2:30 pm  Lunch

2:30-4:15 pm  Parallel Sessions: Panels III and IV

    • Panel III: Music and the Nation
        • Chair: Catherine Cole, University of California-Berkeley (USA)
        • John Collins, University of Ghana (Ghana), Ghanaian Popular Performance and Modernisation: Syncretism, Transculturation, and Progressive Indigenisation
        • Nathan Plageman, Wake Forest University (USA), “It’s Our Music”: Dance Band Highlife, Gender, and National Culture in Ghana, 1957-1965
        • Moses Chikowero, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA), Singing the Nation? Music, Work and the Politics of Culture: Zimbabwe in the First Two Decades of Independence

Discussant: Abena Busia, Rutgers University (USA)

      • Panel IV: New African Film and Media
        • Chair: Moradewun Adejunmobi, University of California-Davis (USA)
        • Carmela Garritano, University of St. Thomas, Minnesota (USA), Parallel Modernities and Underground Transnationalisms: Pirated Nigerian Videos in Ghana and Ghanaian Videos about Global Cities
        • Eno Akpabio, University of Botswana (Botswana), Modernizing Nollywood?
        • Oluwagbemiga Windapo, Adeniran College of Education, Oto/Ijanikin (Nigeria), From Alarinjo to Nollywood: A Development Discourse on the Emergence of the Traditional Egungun Apidan unto the Big Screen in Nigeria
        • Yaba Badoe, Filmmaker/Novelist (Ghana/UK), Some Problems in Representing “Witches” in Contemporary Ghana: Reflections of a Documentary Filmmaker on the “Witches of Gambaga”

Discussant: Kwesi Owusu, Filmmaker (Ghana)

      • 4:30-6:00 pm Opening of Art Exhibition with Reception
      • Still: Two/3 Trouble(s) One God, curated by Bernard Akoi-Jackson, Accra (Ghana) and R. Lane Clark, Santa Barbara (USA)

Wednesday, July 29

9:00-10:15 am  Panel V: Modernity

        • Chair: J. H. Kwabena Nketia, University of Ghana (Ghana)
        • Kevin Dumouchelle, Columbia University (USA), Traditions of Modernity: Five Moments in Architectural Self-Understanding in Kumase
        • Alexandre Cerqueria, Commonwealth-Parkville School, Puerto Rico (USA), No Longer Overlooked: The Modern Tale of Africa’s Relations with Brazil
        • Llyod Amoah, Wuhan University (China), China’s Public Policy Empirics, Public Policy Formation in the South and the Riddle of Modernization
        • Discussant: Percy C. Hintzen, University of California-Berkeley (USA)

10:15-11:15 am Coffee/tea break

      • 11:15-1:00 pm  Panel VI: Roundtable about the Art Exhibition
    • Sylvester Ogbechie, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA)
    • Kwame Amoah Labi, University of Ghana (Ghana)

1:00-2:30 pm  Lunch

2:30-4:15 pm  Parallel Sessions: Panels VII and VIII

    • Panel VII: Exhibition and Museums
        • Chair: Sylvester Ogbechie, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA)
        • J. R. Osborn and Katy Chang, American University-Dubai (United Arab Emirates), Building Cultural Capital:Contemporary African Art in Dubai and the Global Art Circuit
        • Ozioma Onuzulike, University of Nigeria (Nigeria), Art and Artists from Nigeria (Nsukka): El Anatsui as Creative Fount
        • Monica Visonà, University of Kentucky (USA), Ghanaian  Modernism in a Post-Modern Art World
        • Discussant: Kwame Amoah Labi, University of Ghana (Ghana)

Panel VIII: Consumption

        • Chair: Donald Donham, University of California-Davis (USA)
        • Bianca Murillo, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA), The Modern Shopping Experience: Kingsway Department Store and the Politics of Consumerism in Ghana, 1950-1970
        • Lauren Androver, Northwestern University (USA), Corporate Embodiment: the Economics of Dress in a Ghanaian Cultural Festival
        • David Donkor, Texas A & M (USA), Gyamfi’s Golden Soap: Commodity Marketing and the Performance of Cultural Authenticity in Ghana’s Popular Theatre
        • Osman Alhassan, University of Ghana (Ghana), Modernisation, Woodfuel Use, and Livelihood Insecurity in Ghana
        • Discussant: Akosua Adomako Ampofo, University of Ghana (Ghana)

4:30-5:00 pm  Break with snacks

5:00-7:00 pm  Film Screenings

        • Baby Ghana (dir. Jean Rouch, 1957, 26’) [courtesy of Centre National de Cinématographie, Bois d’Arcy]
        • Mr. Mensah Builds a House (dir. Sean Graham, prod. Gold Coast Film Unit, 1954, 36’) [courtesy of the British Film Institute, London]
        • The Boy Kumasenu (dir. Sean Graham, prod. Gold Coast Film Unit, 1951, 63’) [courtesy of the British Film Institute, London]

Thursday, July 30

9:00-10:45 am  Panel IX: Knowledge and Power

        • Chair: Edmond Keller, University of California-Los Angeles (USA)
        • Abena Dove Osseo-Asare, University of California-Berkeley (USA), Scientific Equity: Experiments in Laboratory Education in Ghana
        • Gracia Clark, Indiana University (USA), Consulting Older Women Traders about Progress and Modernization
        • Andrew Apter, University of California-Los Angeles (USA), Whither Modernization? Filial Reflections on the Insight in Blindness
        • A. K. Awedoba, University of Ghana (Ghana), The Perception of Abnormality in Human Infants: The Case of Kasena-Nankana of Ghana
        • Discussant: Yao Graham, Third World Network (Ghana)

10:45-11:15 am Coffee/tea break

11:15-1:00  Panel X: Colonial Cinema and New Modernities

        • Chair: David Platzer, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA)
        • Emma Sandon, Birkbeck College, University of London (UK), African Cinema Spectatorship: The Boy Kumasenu and the Gold Coast Film Unit
        • Peter J. Bloom, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA), From the Primitive to the Developing Subject: Constructing African Audiences and the Work of the Gold Coast Film Unit
        • Rosaleen Smyth, Ruaha University College (Tanzania), Film as an Agent of Modernisation in Africa: The Long View
        • Marleen de Witte, Amsterdam School for Social Science Research (Netherlands), The Holy Spirit on Air: Pentecostalisation of the Ghanaian Broadcast Media
        • Discussant: Yaba Badoe, Filmmaker/Novelist (Ghana/UK)

1:00-2:30 pm  Lunch

      • 2:30-4:15 pm Panel XI: Power and Infrastructure:  Reform, Development, and Scientific Authority
        • Chair: Cecilia Lynch, University of California-Irvine
        • Ayodeji Olukoju, University of Lagos (Nigeria), Power Sector Reforms in Nigeria: Challenges and Opportunities
        • Rose Mensah-Kutin, ABANTU for Development (Ghana), Media Representations of Ghana’s National Electrification Scheme
        • Gabriel Klaeger, SOAS, University of London (UK), Reconstructing the Accra-Kumasi Road: Chances and Drawbacks of a Modernizing Project
        • Discussant: Dzodzi Tsikata, University of Ghana (Ghana)

4:15-5:00 pm  Break with snacks

        • 5:00-6:00 Keynote Address II
        • Nkiru Nzegwu, SUNY Binghamton (USA),
        • Transcending Modernity: Towards a Critical New African Future

Chair: Takyiwaa Manuh, University of Ghana (Ghana)

7:00-9:00  Conference Dinner (IAS Chalets, South Legon)

        • Presentation of prizes for story writing competition, coordinated by Yaba Badoe, University of Ghana (Ghana)

Friday, July 31

9:00-10:45 am  Panel XII: Theatricality and Performance

        • Chair: Ruby Bell-Gam, University of California-Los Angeles (USA)
        • Malik Gaines, University of California-Los Angeles (USA), Efua Sutherland’s African Personality: Ghanaian Drama and International Liberation
        • Christina S. McMahon, University of California-Santa Barbara (USA), Arts Festivals in Africa: Imagining the Trans-nation in an Age of Circulation
        • Catherine Cole, University of California-Berkeley (USA), The Post­Colonial Incredible: Dramatizations from

          Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa

        • Esi Sutherland-Addy, University of Ghana (Ghana), The Funeral as a Site for Constructing Epistemologies of Modernization in Contemporary Ghana
        • Discussant: Awo Asiedu, University of Ghana (Ghana)

10:45-11:15 am Coffee/tea break

      • 11:15-1:00 am Closing Session
        • Chairs: Takyiwaa Manuh, Peter J. Bloom, and Stephan F. Miescher
        • Percy C. Hintzen, University of California-Berkeley (USA)
        • Edmond Keller, University of California-Los Angeles (USA)
    • Brigid Sackey, University of Ghana (Ghana)
        • Kwesi Yankah, University of Ghana (Ghana)
      • 1:00-2:30 Lunch
      • 2:30 End of conference