Brian Larkin at UCSB, April 9 (Media Fields 2)

3 04 2009

Brian Larkin (Columbia) will be at UCSB Thursday April 9 as part of Media Fields 2. The program can be found below. 

MEDIA FIELDS 2: INFRASTRUCTURES
UCSB, April 9-10, 2009
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020) and Mosher Alumni House

Media Fields 2: Infrastructures is an interdisciplinary conference on
media and infrastructure hosted by graduate students in Film and Media
Studies, Communication, and Comparative Literature at UCSB. Media
Fields 2 aims to open a dialogue between different disciplinary
approaches to the study of media infrastructure, provide a forum to
discuss the neglected material aspects of current media systems, and
ask questions about how the term “infrastructure” could help link the
study of media across the humanities and social sciences.

Keynote Speaker:
Brian Larkin, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Barnard College,
Columbia University; author of Signal and Noise: Media,
Infrastructure, and Urban Culture in Nigeria (Duke University Press,
2008); co-editor of Media Worlds: Anthropology on New Terrain
(University of California Press, 2002).

All events are free and open to the public. See full schedule below.
For more information, please visit http://mediafields.wordpress.com/

Sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, Center for
Information Technology and Society, Carsey-Wolf Center for Film,
Television, and New Media, Consortium for Literature, Theory, and
Culture, and Department of Film and Media Studies

Conference Schedule:

THURSDAY, APRIL 9, 2009
McCune Conference Room, HSSB 6020

4:00 PM - Opening Roundtable
Joshua Neves, Katy Pearce, David Platzer, Daniel Reynolds, Jeff
Scheible (University of California, Santa Barbara)

5:30 PM - Keynote Address
Brian Larkin (Barnard College, Columbia University)
“The Political Aesthetics of Infrastructure”

FRIDAY, APRIL 10, 2009
Mosher Alumni House

9:00 AM - Panel 1: Circulations

Eric Hoyt (University of Southern California)
   ”Studio Libraries”
Steven Witkowski (University of California, Santa Barbara)
   ”Porn in the Valley: Mom-and-Pops Video Store Distribution of
Adult-Materials in Reseda, Winnetka and Canoga Park”
Meredith Wright (University of Texas at Austin)
   ”Ciné Woulé, Ciné en Progrès: The Cultural Infrastructure of
French Caribbean Cinema”
Zeynep Gürsel (University of Michigan)
   ”What Is the Dominant? Rewiring the World Picture”
Charles Wolfe (University of California, Santa Barbara), moderator

11:00 AM - Panel 2: Aesthetics

Tom Henthorne and Lee Transue (Pace University)
   ”String Theory, French Horns, and the Infrastructure of ‘Cyberspace’”
Chris Vasantkumar (Hamilton College)
   ”In-forming Aesthetic Infrastructures: Remediating Money and Theory”
Clint Froehlich (University of Chicago)
   ”Digital Liquidity: Blu-Ray Menu Screens and Porous Media”
Moderator TBA

12:30 PM  Lunch Break

1:30 PM - Panel 3: Publics

Ryan Bowles (University of California, Santa Barbara)
   ”Ambient XXX: The Porn Screen as Infrastructure of Looking,
Sexuality and Power in Public Space”
Mehita Iqani (London School of Economics and Political Science)
   ”Point of Sale: The Magazine Newsstand as Socio-semiotic Infrastructure”
Ateya Khorakiwala (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
   ”Intersections of Infrastructure and Security: The Case of the
Border Roads Organisation”
Clayton Rosati (Bowling Green State University)
   ”The Ecstasy of Alienation: Infrastructures of Feeling and the
Spatial Struggles of Cultural Production”
Bishnupriya Ghosh (University of California, Santa Barbara), moderator

3:30 PM - Panel 4: Mobilities

Scott Ruston (University of California, Los Angeles)
   ”Mobile Media: Combining Infrastructures of Database and
Connectivity? and Narrative?”
Ajay Gehlawat (Sonoma State University)
   ”Bollywood Infrastructure in an Era of Digital Transnationalism”
Athena Tan (University of California, Santa Barbara)
   ”Mediating Mobilities at the Call Center”
Cristina Venegas (University of California, Santa Barbara), moderator

5:30 PM - Closing Roundtable
Brian Larkin (Barnard College, Columbia University); Jennifer Earl,
Lisa Parks (University of California, Santa Barbara)



James Ferguson at UCLA, April 6

3 04 2009
“Declarations of Dependence: Labor, Personhood, and Welfare in South Africa and Beyond”
 
The African Studies Center presents a talk by James Ferguson, Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, Stanford University
 
Date: Monday, April 6, 2009
 
Time: 11:30 AM – NOTE EARLIER TIME FOR LECTURE
 
Where:
6275 Bunche Hall
6th floor History conference room

Cost:  Free and open to the public; pay-by-space and all-day ($9) parking is available in lot 3.
 
Special Instructions
PLEASE NOTE TIME AND ROOM CHANGE!!
 
Abstract:
South Africa has in recent decades gone through a wrenching transformation from a labor-scarce society to a labor-surplus one. Labor scarcity through most of the 19th and 20th centuries led to forms of social solidarity and social personhood that had significant continuities with the pre-colonial past (continuities that are obscured by conventional narratives that emphasize the rise of capitalism as a complete and comprehensive break with the past). In recent decades, though, economic restructuring has radically reduced demand for low-skilled, manual labor, and mass unemployment has become a durable structural feature of South African society. This new situation is more radically different from the past than is generally recognized, and calls for new ways of thinking about social membership, work, “dependency”, and social assistance. It is suggested that the South African experience reveals, in an extreme and clarifying form, a set of processes that are occurring in many other parts of the world. Better understanding such processes may help us to find our way past some of the current impasses in progressive politics.
 
About Professor Ferguson and his research:
Professor Ferguson’s research has been conducted in Lesotho and Zambia, and has engaged a broad range of theoretical and ethnographic issues. A central theme running through it has been a concern with the political, broadly conceived, and with the relation between specific social and cultural processes and the abstract narratives of “development” and “modernization” through which such processes have so often been known and understood. Ferguson’s most recent book, Global Shadows: Africa in the Neoliberal World Order was published by Duke University Press in 2006. The essays that make up the book address a range of specific topics, ranging from structural adjustment, the crisis of the state, and the emergence of new forms of government-via-NGO, to the question of the changing social meaning of “modernity” for colonial and postcolonial urban Africans. They converge, however, around the question of “Africa” as a place in a wider categorical ordering of the world, and they use this question as a way to think about such large-scale issues as globalization, modernity, worldwide inequality, and social justice.
 
Professor Ferguson is now beginning a new research project in South Africa, exploring the emergence of new problematics of poverty and social policy under conditions of neoliberalism. He is currently Chair and Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Stanford University; he completed his PhD at Harvard in 1985.
 
About MASS:
This lecture is part of the Monday Africa Seminar Series (MASS) .  Monday Africa is a bi-weekly series that will feature innovative research by UCLA faculty, as well as outside visitors, and build an Africanist community at UCLA. Speakers will present recent books, unpublished papers, or ongoing research.
 
For more information, please contact:
James S. Coleman African Studies Center
 


Goodbye Solo at UCLA

30 03 2009
Goodbye Solo
Tuesday, March 31 at 7:30pm
FREE Sneak Preview - 91 minutes
 
Winner of the Venice Film Festival’s FIPRESCI International Critics Prize, Goodbye Solo is the latest movie from acclaimed filmmaker Ramin Bahrani (Chop Shop, Man Push Cart).  On the lonely roads of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, two men forge an improbable friendship that will change both of their lives forever.  Solo is a Senegalese cab driver working to provide a better life for his family.  William is a tough Southern good ol’ boy with a lifetime of regrets.  One man’s American dream is just beginning, while the other’s is quickly winding down.  But despite their differences, both men soon realize they need each other more than either is willing to admit.  Through this unlikely friendship, Goodbye Solo deftly explores the passing of a generation as well as the rapidly changing face of the United States.
 
“Has an uncanny ability to enlarge your perception of the world.” -A.O. Scott, New York Times
“Powerful, riveting, inspiring.” -Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times
Warm hearted and cheerful. A Force of Nature.  And Bahrani has established himself as a major American director.” –Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun Times


Excavating the Past: Archaeological Perspectives on Black Atlantic Regional Networks (UCLA)

17 03 2009
Excavating the Past: Archaeological Perspectives on Black Atlantic Regional Networks
 
A Conference in Honor of Merrick Posnansky
 
Friday, April 3 – Saturday, April 4, 2009
 
In William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
2520 Cimarron Street
(West Adams District)
Los Angeles, CA 90018-2098
323-731-8529 or 310-206-8552
 
A conference at the Clark Library organized by Andrew Apter, UCLA, and Patrick A. Polk, UCLA.
 
Co-sponsored by the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, the Mellon Transforming the Humanities Grant, and the James S. Coleman African Studies Center.
 
The UCLA Mellon Seminar in Black Atlantic Studies explores an emerging paradigm shift in African Diaspora scholarship.  Inspired by Paul Gilroy’s innovative work in black cultural studies, the shift can be described as one from “roots” to “routes,” recasting Africa from a “baseline” to a “circuit” predicated on ethnic mixing and hybrid forms from the inception of the triangle trade.  If European ports and capitals, Caribbean plantations, American shipyards and African cities became co-equal sites in an emerging trans-Atlantic field, so trade-union politics, plural societies, Pan-African movements and expressive musical and ritual hybrids developed as hallmarks of a distinctive “counter-modernity.”
 
Excavating the Past, a two-day conference in honor of UCLA emeritus professor Merrick Posnansky, will bring together a select group of leading archaeologists and historians of the Black Atlantic, most trained by Posnansky himself.  Beyond recognizing Merrick’s contribution to the archaeology of Africa and the Americas, the aim is to develop a better understanding of how archaeological sites in Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States provide “grounds” for hypothesizing the presence and impact of regional symbolic systems and/or social networks.  Particular emphasis will be placed on the development of Creole societies during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in relation to West-Central Africa and Europe.
 
Papers:
Conference papers presented at the Clark Library will be posted to the Center’s website by March 23, and will remain accessible until April 17.
 
 
Registration Deadline:  March 26, 2009
 
Registration Fees: $25 per person; UC faculty & staff, students with ID: no charge*
*Students should enclose a photocopy of their current ID with the registration form.
 
Fees are not refundable and apply to full or partial attendance.
 
 
Parking:
Free parking; for where to park info/directions, visit http://www.humnet.ucla.edu/humnet/clarklib/loc.htm
 
Handicapped Accessibility:
Please call a week ahead to arrange for wheelchair access.  Inquiries: 310-206-8552.
 
Please be aware that space at the Clark is limited and that registration closes when capacity is reached.  No confirmation will be sent, but you will be contacted if personnel receive your registration after capacity has been reached.


Global Perspectives on Youth and Violence at UCLA

10 03 2009
USA for Africa, the Latin American Institute, the Center for Near Eastern Studies,
the African Studies Center, and the Department of French and Francophone Studies present
 
Global Perspectives on Youth and Violence
Thursday, March 12, 2008
 
Covel Commons
UCLA Campus
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
 
Free and open to the public
Lunch will be provided
 
 
Young people make up almost a fifth of the world’s population.  Close to 85% of the 1.1 billion young men and women between the ages of 15 and 24 live in developing countries.  Rapid population growth, the unavailability of housing and support services, poverty, unemployment and underemployment among youth, the decline in the authority of local communities, overcrowding in poor urban areas, the disintegration of the family, and ineffective educational systems are some of the new pressures young people must deal with.
 
This forum will examine the issues facing young people today and explore the increased global phenomena of youth involvement in violence both as perpetrators and victims.
 
Panels (schedule is subject to change)
 
10 AM - Opening - UCLA & USA for Africa
Broad Overview - Malia Lazu, The Gathering for Justice
 
Social Justice Panel - Moderated by Alex Sanchez, Homies Unidos
  • Tshaka Barrows (Community Justice Network for Youth) - “US and Cuba: Youth and Social Justice System”
  • Julie Peteet (University of Louisville) - “Palestinian Youth in the Refugee Camps”
  • Juan Pacheco (Barrios Unidos) - “Trans-nationalization of Youth Gangs”
Q & A for Youth and Social Justice Panel
 
12:00 PM - lunch break for approximately an hour; free lunch will be provided for attendees
 
Afternoon Sessions:
 
Culture and Technology Panel - Moderated by Cheryl Keyes, UCLA Ethnomusicology (2009 NAACP Image Award Winner for World Music for her CD, “Let Me Take You There”)
  • Gregory (Beef) Jones (The Run Group) - “Hip-Hop, Culture and Technology”
  • Ben Herson (Nomadic Wax) - “African Underground: Exploring Youth, Hip-Hop, Technology & Social Change in Africa”
  • Malia Lazu (The Gathering for Justice) - “Youth Mobilization in Africa”
Q & A for Culture and Technology Panel
 
Special Presentation:
  • Ysamur Flores Pena (OTIS College of Art & Design) - “New Approaches to Youth and Urban Violence”
Q & A for Professor Flores Pena
  • “‘Homeboy’ Histories” works from OTIS College of Art & Design class
Sponsored by:
USA for Africa - www.usaforafrica.org
UCLA African Studies Center - www.international.ucla.edu/africa
UCLA Center for Near Eastern Studies - www.international.ucla.edu/cnes
UCLA Latin American Institute - www.international.ucla.edu/lac
 

UCLA Department of French and Francophone Studies - www.french.ucla.edu

 

 



Takyiwaa Manuh Coming to UCSB (March 4) and UCLA (March 2)

27 02 2009

This coming week Takyiwaa Manuh will be speaking at UCLA and UCSB. See below for information about both events:

The UCLA Center for the Study of Women and the UCLA African Studies Center invite you to
 
“Transnational Feminisms in Africa”
 
Professor Takyiwaa Manuh
Director, Institute of African Studies (IAS)
University of Ghana, Legon
 
Monday, March 2, 2009 at 12 PM
6275 Bunche Hall - 6th floor
UCLA campus
 
Free and open to the public
Light refreshments will be served
 
 
Abstract:
In this interdisciplinary seminar at UCLA, which will be focused on the place of transnational feminisms in Africa, Professor Manuh will directly speak to the often bewildering relationship between institutional realities, discursive strategies, and meaningful activism.  Based on her professional experience as a scholar, academic administrator, and gender activist, she will address West African and Ghanaian contexts in order to inform the expanding framework for transnationalism in Feminist Studies, History, History of Art and other disciplines.
 
Bio:
Professor Takyiwaa Manuh is director of the Institute of African Studies (IAS), University of Ghana, Legon.  She is a leading academic on the African continent, and her intellectual commitments and institutional network defines African Studies as an increasingly global and diasporic field of inquiry.  She holds an LLM degree and PhD in Anthropology from Indiana University, Bloomington.
 
Professor Manuh has published more than fifty articles and books, and was elected as Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005.  Her publications reflect her research interests in women’s rights and empowerment issues in Ghana and Africa, African development issues, The State, Gender and Women in Ghana; Contemporary African Migrations, and higher education in Africa.  Her early work focused on women and gender issues in Ghana, but has since moved to include contemporary international migration out of Africa, and African higher education.  She is active in the women’s movement in Ghana and is Board Chair of ABANTU for development, and a member of the Steering Committee of NETRIGHT, the coalition for women’s rights in Ghana.
 
For more info about Professor Manuh, visit http://www.queensu.ca/edg/bios/manuh.html.
 
“For me, it has been like oxygen….” - Professor Manuh responding to how important it is for academics and activists to work together for women’s empowerment.
To listen to Professor Manuh discuss her work, visit http://www.opendemocracy.net/audio/5050/16_days/takyiwaa_manuh.
 
 
Cost:  Free and open to the public; pay-by-space and all-day ($9) parking available in lot 3.  For campus map, directions, transportation options to UCLA, visit www.ucla.edu/map.
 
Sponsors:
UCLA Center for the Study of Women - www.csw.ucla.edu
UCLA African Studies Center - www.international.ucla.edu/africa
 
 
For more information, please contact:
African Studies Center
 

UCSB


On Wednesday, March 4, 12:15-2:15 pm Professor Manuh will conduct an interdisciplinary seminar titled 
“Transnational Feminisms in Africa” 
The seminar will be held in the Feminist Studies Conference Room, 4631 South Hall.
There will be light refreshments.

In this interdisciplinary seminar, which will be focused on the place of transnational feminisms in Africa, Manuh will directly speak to the often bewildering relationship between institutional realities, discursive strategies, and meaningful activism. Based on her professional experience as a scholar, academic administrator, and gender activist, she will address West African and Ghanaian contexts in order to inform the expanding framework for transnationalism in Feminist Studies, History, History of Art and other disciplines.

Participants are encouraged to read the following chapter: Takyiwaa Manuh, “Doing Gender Work in Ghana,” in AFRICA AFTER GENDER? ed. Catherine Cole, Takyiwaa Manuh, and Stephan Miescher, pp. 125-49 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2007) — a copy will be available a week before at
<http://www.womst.ucsb.edu/projects/crwsj/conversations/>
login: conversations
password: forchange

This seminar is being organized by the Department of Feminist Studies and the African Studies Research Focus Group with support from the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, the University of California African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group, the Hull Chair in Feminist Studies, the Department of History, and the Department of History of Art & Architecture.



Upcoming Events: Jacqueline Djedje and Takyiwaa Manuh

18 02 2009

Upcoming Events in African Studies:

Fiddling in West Africa: Touching the Spirit in Fulbe, Hausa and Dagbamba Cultures

Jacqueline Djedje Professor and Chair, Department of Ethnomusicology

Monday, February 23, 2009 at 12:00 PM
10367 Bunche Hall (10th floor)
UCLA campus
Free and open to the public

Jacqueline Cogdell DjeDje has been on the UCLA faculty since 1979. She teaches theoretical area courses in African and African-American music and was director of an African-American vocal ensemble. Much of DjeDje’s research has focused on performance practices as they relate to the one-string fiddle tradition in West Africa. In recent years her research has extended to the study of fiddling in African-American culture and its inter-connections with Anglo-American music. In addition, she has conducted investigations on African-American religious music. She is particularly interested in how the dynamics of urban life give rise to change and other musical activity. She has conducted fieldwork in several countries in West Africa (Ghana, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, The Gambia, and Senegal), Jamaica, California, and the southern United States (Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, and Louisiana).

“Transnational Feminisms in Africa”

Professor Takyiwaa Manuh
University of Ghana, Legon

Monday, March 02, 2009 at 12:00 PM
6275 Bunche Hall (6th floor)
UCLA campus
Free and open to the public

Abstract:
In this interdisciplinary seminar at UCLA, which will be focused on the place of transnational feminisms in Africa, Manuh will directly speak to the often bewildering relationship between institutional realities, discursive strategies, and meaningful activism. Based on her professional experience as a scholar, academic administrator, and gender activist, she will address West African and Ghanaian contexts in order to inform the expanding framework for transnationalism in Feminist Studies, History, History of Art and other disciplines.

Bio:
Professor Takyiwaa Manuh is director of the Institute of African Studies (IAS), University of Ghana, Legon. She is a leading academic on the African continent, and her intellectual commitments and institutional network defines African Studies as an increasingly global and diasporic field of inquiry. She holds an LLM degree and PhD in Anthropology from Indiana University, Bloomington. She has published more than fifty articles and books, and was elected as Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005.

Both these events are free and open to the public; pay-by-space and all-day ($9) parking available in lot 3. For campus map, directions, transportation options to UCLA, visit www.ucla.edu/map.

For more info, contact the UCLA African Studies Center at 310-825-3686 or email africa@international.ucla.edu or visit www.international.ucla.edu/africa

Information forwarded by the UCLA African Studies Center (ASC) - www.international.ucla.edu/africa



Current Projects - Revisiting Modernization, Dissertation Workshop, and Writing Competition

6 02 2009

NOTE:  Please Submit any last minute proposals for the Revisiting Modernization Conference by Friday, February 06.  Information about conference can be found here.

Call for Proposals

The UC African Studies Dissertation Workshop
University of California, Davis, May 30-31, 2009

The African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group (MRG) invites applications for a dissertation workshop to be held at the University of California, Davis on Saturday/Sunday, May 30-31, 2009 (non-UCD participants are requested to arrive in the evening of Friday, May 29).

Eligibility: Applicants shall be current University of California graduate students in the humanities, arts, law, or social sciences in good academic standing. Preference will be given to students who expect to submit proposals for funding in the 2009-10 academic year.

Description of African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group: In July 2008, the University of California launched an initiative to re-conceptualize African Studies as a multi-sited post-colonial discipline in order to foment change in the study and engagement with the African continent. Over a five-year period, the new African Studies Multi-Campus Research Group (MRG) will organize an array of activities on the African continent that include three international conferences in Ghana, Senegal, and South Africa. By combining resources among the ten UC campuses, the MRG will arrange visiting fellowship for academics from the African continent, performances of African cultural groups, as well as graduate student workshops and other events so that African studies may be further integrated into teaching and research within the humanities and social sciences across the UC system and beyond. Further information is available at http://www.ihc.ucsb.edu/africanstudies/

Objective of the Dissertation Workshop: The objective of the dissertation workshop is to facilitate interdisciplinary research across the disciplines in African Studies. The workshop will provide an opportunity for ten graduate students to present their current dissertation research proposal and receive critical feedback on their projects from five to six UC faculty members in African studies from a diversity of disciplines. Dissertation participants will be expected to post their research descriptions on a web-based discussion board prior to the May meeting created on a section of the African Studies MRG website. All participants will read and provide comments on all proposals. For students from campuses other than UCD, students are invited to request support from their respective campuses through their own departments and the African Studies-related program or center. The African Studies MRG will provide limited funding to support travel and accommodation for non-UCD students.

Proposal Submission: Proposal package must include the following items: (1) a short cover letter that includes your contact information, campus location, department, with a 100-word bio, (2) a one-page CV, (3) a three-page (single-spaced) proposal including a project description, research methods, and statement on the current stage of the applicant’s research, (4) a one-page research schedule; (5) a one-page bibliography, and (6) a list of three referees including the applicant’s primary dissertation advisor who may be contacted.

Applications must be submitted electronically as one PDF or MSWord document to: africanstudiesmrg@ihc.ucsb.edu. Completed applications must be received by: March 31, 2009. Ten successful applicants will be notified by April 15, 2009.

Please direct queries regarding the workshop to africanstudiesmrg@ihc.ucsb.edu.



Welcome to New African Studies MRG Website

5 02 2009

Welcome!