MSU Tuesday Bulletin, 02/19/08

The African Studies Center at MSU
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Tuesday Bulletin for February 19th, 2008 Topics covered in this issue: Events | Announcements | Other Announcements | Conferences


Food, Agriculture and Natural Resource Systems in South Africa and Swaziland, Summer 2008 Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Study Abroad Informational Meeting, 5:00 p.m., 1310 Anthony Hall.

Evolution of Uganda's Forest Biodiversity: Apes to Aves, Summer 2008 Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Study Abroad Informational Meeting, 5:00 p.m., 204 Museum – East Conference Room.

Building Partnerships for Orphaned and Vulnerable Children in West Kenya, Summer 2008 Thursday, February 21, 2008
Study Abroad Information meeting, 5:00 p.m., Room 106 Bessey Hall.

Evolution of Uganda's Forest Biodiversity: Apes to Aves, Summer 2008 Monday, February 25, 2008
Study Abroad Informational Meeting, 5:00 p.m., 204 Museum – East Conference Room.

Some Reflections on the Evolution of Popular Political Representations in Burkina Faso Thursday, February 28, 2008
African Studies Center Brown Bag talk with Mathieu Hilgers, Research Fellow (Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique, Belgium and Visiting Scholar, African Studies Center), 12:00 noon, Room 201 International Center.

An Island Apart
Cultural and Natural Resources of Madagascar, Summer 2008 Monday, February 18, 2008 Study Abroad Informational Meeting, 5:00 p.m., Room 001 Natural Resources.

Food, Agriculture and Natural Resource Systems in South Africa and Swaziland, Summer 2008 Monday, February 18, 2008
Study Abroad Informational Meeting, 5:30 p.m., 1310 Anthony Hall.

The Use of Arabic in Senegalese Society: Analysis of impacts at the social and educational levels Thursday, February 21, 2008
African Studies Center Brown Bag talk with Cheikh Gueye, Faculty (Univ. of Cheikh Anta Diop, Senegal, Visiting Scholar, African Studies Center), 12:00 noon, Room 201 International Center.

Film series
"Drum" (South Africa)
Thursday, February 28, 2008 The film will be shown at the Snyder-Phillips residential college theater, 7:30p.m.

Winner of the first prize award for best film at the 2005 FESPACO festival in Burkina Faso (Africa's premier film festival). Drum tells the story of Heny Nxumalo South Africa's leading investigative reporter, exposing the Apartheid regime's darkest secrets in the pages of Drum, the first magazine in South Africa aimed at a Black readership. To expose the appalling conditions of African farm-workers in the Transvaal, he gets a job on a farm where farm workers are treated brutally. He then gets himself arrested so that he can report on the conditions of Black prisoners in Apartheid's jails. Drum is published from Sophiatown, which was in the 1950s a multiracial oasis in the heart of Apartheid Johannesburg. In the 1960s, the regime decides that both Sophiatown and Drum have to be destroyed in the realization of Apartheid's grand vision.

No Brown Bag
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Spring Break


Undefended Childhood: A Global Perspective-CFP The undefended childhood conference will take place April 3-4, 2008 at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on the campus of Michigan State University. It will focus on the various issues of vulnerable children around the world. The conference will track: child labor; education; indigenous rights; health; HIV/AIDS; refugee/immigrants; children in conflict; poverty; environment; language and culture. The Honorable Dr. Judith Mbula Bahemuka, High Commissioner to Canada will be the keynote speaker. Abstract or poster submissions are due March 1, 2008. Poster submissions requests may be submitted to Yeon Soo Kim at Pre-registration ends Monday, March 24. For registration fees and information, contact Linda Hancock at For conference details, visit the website at

MSU Ag Econ Food Security International Updates See what's new on the MSU Food Security Group web site:

2009-2010 Fulbright Faculty/ Professional Scholars The 2009-2010 Fulbright Faculty/Professional Scholars Fellowship Program and the 2009-2010 U.S. Student Fellowship Program will open, respectively, on March 1 and May 1, 2008. These programs provide outstanding opportunities for MSU faculty, graduate students and graduating seniors to develop international scholarly experience that can enhance their careers and enrich their lives. Grants are available for over 140 countries. They pay for air travel, a monthly living stipend, health and accident insurance, and, in some cases, tuition waivers and research allowances. Informational Workshop schedules for these Fulbright Programs are available at the International Studies and Programs website. MSU faculty should visit: Graduating seniors/ graduate students visit: fulbright/.

For additional information, contact Dr. Frank M. D'Itri, the MSU Fulbright Program Advisor, at:

Symposium & Reception for Dr. Pero G. Dagbovie African American and African Studies Program extends an invitation to their Black History Month Symposium for Dr. Pero Dagbovie featuring his new book, The Early Black History Movement, Carter G. Woodson and Lorenzo Johnston Greene with commentary from Distinguished Scholars of African American History: Dr. Arvarh E. Strickland, Dr. Darlene Clark Hine and Dr. Antonio F. Holland.

Dr. Dagbovie is Professor of History and a member of the African Studies Center Consulting Faculty. This event is co-sponsored by: Black Faculty, Staff, Administrators Association (BFSAA), Comparative Black History PhD Program; Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives; College of Arts and Letters; Department of English; and Department of History. The Symposium will be held Wednesday, February 27, 2008, 6:00-8:00 p.m. in the Kellogg Center Auditorium. Please direct questions to: Theresa Marquez at (517) 355-5229 or e-mail:

Zulu Basket Sale, East Lansing, MI
The 5th Annual Zulu Basket Sale is scheduled for Friday, February 22, 2008, 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. and Saturday, February 23 from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. at All Saints Episcopal Church, 800 Abbott Road, East Lansing, MI 48823. This event, the major sale of the year of these wonderful baskets, provides livelihood for South African artists and scholarships for South African students. Direct from Hlabisa, a hamlet in KwaZulu-Natal Province of South Africa, these Zulu baskets were purchased by Linking All Types of Teachers to International Cross-Cultural Education (LATTICE), an award winning professional development partnership with Michigan State University international students and mid-Michigan school teachers and administrators. The sale of the baskets provides scholarships for South African students while furthering international appreciation of this traditional Zulu art form. LATTICE has provided over $7000 to students attending K-12 schools as well as universities and schools of technology.

The prices for baskets, range from $20 to $450 depending on size, colors and complexity of the weave. Absolutely all proceeds support childrens education in South Africa. For centuries, Zulu women have excelled in basket making. Basket colors are natural, made from boiling roots, leaves, berries, and bark of local flora. Traditional basket designs can take from one to six weeks to complete. The public is invited to come learn about and admire the most recent examples of this ancient art. Visit the LATTICE website at , or contact Connie Detjen at for details.

Historians Launch Podcast About African Studies Two Africanist historians at Michigan State University have launched the "Africa Past & Present" podcast, an innovative show about history, culture, politics and African Studies in general which can be accessed at:

"Africa matters," said Peter Alegi, Assistant Professor of African History. "It matters to America since about one in seven Americans trace their origins to the African continent. Africa also has global implications: economic, political, and cultural ones. Finally, Africa deserves to be studied and debated in its own right, like any other continent." Through interviews with eminent scholars and persons, this podcast highlights cutting-edge knowledge and ideas in African Studies from a wide range of perspectives. Alegi and his co-host Peter Limb intend to broaden accessibility to the study of Africa beyond the traditional confines of university classrooms.

"Podcasting is an exciting and vibrant forum, especially for communication," notes Limb, African Bibliographer and Adjunct Associate Professor of History. "It opens up a new horizon for interaction not just in this country, but also with scholars, activists, and others in Africa itself." Africa Past & Present is produced by Matrix­The Center for Humane Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences Online­and the MSU Department of History. Listen and subscribe to the fortnightly podcasts at: For information contact Peter Alegi and Peter Limb, Dept. of History, (517) 355-7500, e-mail:

Other Announcements

Ways Out Of Misery
Africa (WOOM– Africa) Maimouna Kebe is a former Humphrey fellow at Michigan State University, 2005-2006, and current president of Ways Out Of Misery – Africa Corporation (Woom-Africa), a new non-profit organization based in Florida. WOOM–Africa's ambition is to contribute to socio-economic and cultural development, as well as poverty eradication, while fostering peace, friendship and mutual respect between peoples.

In this framework, a first stake has been planted with the funding of a rice decorticator for the women of Daroul Khairy, a village located in the South of Senegal (West Africa). This gift was offered by the Women Dorcas Circle of Lansing Michigan, after a contact established through the Humphrey fellowship program. For more detailed information on this donation and on the WOOM–Africa programs, please visit Comments and suggestions are welcome at: WOOM–Africa is opened to all collaboration, concurrent to the realization of its objectives.


Religion & Religious Identities in Africa and the African Diaspora Kalamazoo, MI, May 22-25, 2008 Religious beliefs and identities have among other things shaped the nature of human experience in Africa and the African Diaspora. It is also a known fact that religious beliefs and identities have influenced human behavior in both religious and non-religious ways in different societies. These influences have included positive and negative consequences in the ordering of society in Africa and the African Diaspora. Another critical aspect in trying to explore the concept of religion is what constitutes religion and religious beliefs? To date, scholars of religion have divergent views on this issue.

To what extent is this applicable to Africans and peoples of African descent? What roles have religion and religious identities played in nation-building efforts in Africa and the African Diaspora? This conference will explore these and other related issues. In addition, participants are invited to explore other topics such as, but not limited to the following:

  • Religion, gender and sexuality issues;

  • Religion and conflicts;

  • Religion, health and well-being;

  • Religion, State and political participation;

  • Religious denominations and community development;

  • Current scholarship on religion and religious Identities;

  • African religious identities in the Diaspora;

  • Religious identities in immigrant communities;

  • Pentecostalism in Africa and the African Diaspora;

  • Inter-religious encounters in Africa and the African Diaspora - Islam, Christianity and African Traditional Religions;

  • Religion, Education and the making of the nation.

Conference participants are encouraged to submit abstracts (300 words at most) on any aspect of the broad themes identified above.

The deadline for submitting paper proposals is April 15, 2008. All abstracts should include title, the author's name, institutional affiliation, address, telephone number, and email address. Please submit all abstracts by e-mail to: Onaiwu W. Ogbomo, Western Michigan University, e-mail:, Joseph Bangura, Kalamazoo College, e-mail:

For further details about the conference visit:

Page Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar, Ph.D.

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