SERSAS 2024 Abstracts

Southeast Regional Seminar in African Studies

SERSAS SPRING 2024 Presentation Abstracts, in the panel order.

Author: Tyler Fleming

Title: The Curious Case of a Tiger Kid’: Boxing and South Africa’s Racial & Immigration Policies under Apartheid

Abstract: In July 1956, the South African Minister of Justice received an anonymous handwritten letter making a series of explosive accusations against Adam “Tiger Kid” Shaik, a Coloured businessman and the preeminent boxing promoter in Cape Town.  Urging the government to “investigate for justice and truth,” the author accused Shaik of committing multiple crimes, including selling duplicate tickets (aka selling more tickets than seats-available), evading the amusement tax (a tax that required promoters to pay in order to hold public entertainment events), and bribing or currying favor with white boxing authorities. 

Although anonymous, the accuser’s intimate knowledge of both boxing in the Western Cape and Shaik’s promotions indicates that the author was also involved in Cape Town boxing and jealous of Shaik’s prominence.  Arguing that Shaik “spolit things for the public in the boxing game,” the letter not only accused Shaik misdeeds but also asserted that Shaik was, in fact, not Coloured but indeed an Indian born in Natal. Under South African law at this time, Indians were barred from residing or working in the Cape Province (today’s Western Cape) without possessing the proper paperwork.  Thus if such allegations were true, Shaik, an “illegal immigrant,” would be deported to Natal (present day KwaZulu-Natal). Thereby ending his stranglehold over local boxing.  

In an investigation spanning two years, the South African government found that Shaik was not only an Indian illegally in Cape Town but that he possessed a lengthy criminal history.  Instead of conceding to governmental authority, Shaik went to work resisting deportation. Deploying a shrewd set of tactics obfuscating his ties to Natal and Indian identity, Shaik argued that he was adopted by a Coloured family as teenager and considering himself Coloured. Influential white administrators of the boxing control board and government officials rallied to Shaik’s defense.  They attested to his good standing in society and argued that he was indispensable to the health of boxing in the province.  Motivated by their own desire to attend boxing matches in Cape Town, they defended Shaik and essentially petitioned that apartheid policies should be set aside in this particular case. Ultimately, Shaik and his allies proved successful and he remained in Cape Town. 

Drawing on media reports, immigration files, criminal records, and other primary sources, this essay unpacks how Shaik’s prominence within local boxing circles facilitated his ability to avoid deportation.  Through detailing “Tiger Kid” Shaik’s life and career, the accusations made against him, the government’s investigations into Shaik’s race and birthplace, and his successful bid to avoid deportation, this essay not only explores how sport mattered within 1950s South Africa. By investigating this exceptional occurrence, this paper articulates how apartheid policies pertaining to racial categorization and legalities proved not always absolute. The “Tiger Kid” demonstrates that laws may sometimes be made malleable, government inefficiencies and corruption could be exploited, and influential white allies’ self-interests could be weaponized against apartheid policies. That is if one possessed the guile, means, and connections to do so and only in the most curious cases.

Author:  Dr. Lorna Kimaiyo

Title: Ethnicity and Sports in Colonial Kenya

Abstract: British colonial institutions in Kenya approached the development of sports in the colony along ethnic lines, with lasting implications for how Africans spent their leisure time. The military and the police were two major colonial institutions involved in the introduction of sports in Kenya. Both maintained a policy of recruiting prospective athletes based on ethnic considerations. Following the imperial idea of ‘martial races’, ethnicity often determined who was recruited and, once recruited, who could participate in the sporting activities introduced by the military and police. This practiced enforced ethnic difference in the development of modern sports in Kenya. For example, the British believed the Kalenjin to form a ‘martial race’ and so Kalenjin men comprised a high percentage of military recruits in the King’s African Riffles. It was from among those military recruits that a significant number of Kalenjin athletes distinguished themselves in colonial Kenya. Although the Kalenjin have over the years carved a niche for themselves in athletics both nationally and globally, the question of how the introduction and development of sports impacted the discourse on ethnicity in colonial and post-colonial Kenya has remained largely unexplored. This study thus attempts to examine how the colonial idea of ethnicity impacted Kenyan sports in the mid-twentieth century using athletics and Kalenjin identity as a case study. 

Author:  Stephen Wycliffe Njororai

Title:   Transnational African Male Football Player Mobilities and the Chinese Super League

Abstract: The globalization processes that characterize the modern world keep attracting African male football players from their home countries to places where the return on their talent and skills is higher. This process of transnational mobility is shaped by a complex interplay of economic, infrastructural, cultural, legal, and social factors. This presentation shows that Africa’s player mobility is shaped and informed by the historical context, the globalization of football, and the agency of the players themselves within the broader socio-economic and political landscape. The founding of the Chinese Super League (CSL) in 2004 expanded the lucrative options for African football players who were accustomed to venturing into Europe, Middle East, U.S.A., and Southeast Asia. Since 2006, the CSL has consistently had an average of thirteen or so players from Africa on their team rosters each year. So far, more than 28 African countries have had at least one player in the CSL. The presence of African players has elevated the brand value of the CSL by raising its profile, stadium attendance, and quality of the game. Additionally, the presence of star players in the CSL has helped to enhance global awareness of soccer in China.  

Keywords: Transnational mobilities, labor migration, Chinese Super League, African football, globalization, professional football.

AuthorYomi Ejikunle

Title:   New Approach to Anti-Apartheid Struggle: Interrogating Nigeria’s Contributions to the 1968 Mexico Olympics Boycott Threat

Abstract: The Mexico Olympics of 1968 has attracted enormous attention of sport researchers and enthusiasts, particularly due to the famous black fist protest of two African American athletes against racism in American sport. The demonstration was so legendary that it overshadowed Africans’ anti-apartheid movement that forced South Africa out of the Olympics for two decades. This research aims to analyze the anti-apartheid struggle at the Mexico games with special focus on Nigeria’s contribution to the movement. Nigeria was expected to assume the leadership of African continent at international events when it gained political independence from colonial rule in 1960. Unfortunately, political mistrust, ethnic tensions and civil war put the country into disarray within its first decade as an independent nation. This paper argues that Nigeria failed to lead Africa in the anti-apartheid movement of 1968 even though the International Olympics Committee (IOC) accorded it the status of a continental leader. The Mexico games coincided with the Nigerian civil war (1967-70) and Nigerian political leaders revered the Olympics games beyond sports gathering but as a platform to diplomatically canvas for military supports against the seceding Biafran region.

Author:   Denis Waswa

Title: Rethinking Mau-Mau Ecosophy: The Forest and Black Liberation in Kenya

Abstract: This paper examines (1) the British government’s perception of the Mau-Mau movement, (2) the indigenous struggle for freedom, and (3) the role of the forest in aiding African resistance to racialized violence. Through a literal and critical analysis of Meja Mwangi’s Carcase for Hounds, I explore the racial stereotypes that legitimized colonial violence against the Mau-Mau soldiers in Kenya. Colonialists described Mau-Maus as terrorists, beasts, savages, cannibals, atavistic men of the jungle, and primitive barbarians who deserved death. The above racist colonial language validated violence against the black soldiers in the forest. However, the forest sheltered these ‘undesirable excess elements’ that the colonial regime wanted to eliminate for threatening white supremacy. I argue that while colonialism erased the human identity of the Mau-Maus, the forest reconnects them to their ancestral land and identity. I propose that ‘going back’ to the forest uncovers cultural truths that enhance Kenya’s national rebirth. The Mau-Mau-Forest unity gives the indigenous soldiers the strength to resist, persevere, and remain resilient to the liberation struggle. This return to the forest marks a continuation of racial reparation politics, with the forest as an active actor in the battle. Therefore, I conclude that the Kenyan forest is a site of illuminating racial justice and equality.

Author:  Catherine Lee Porter

Title:   Web-based approaches to understanding political association in Cold War Central Africa

Abstract: This paper is a multidisciplinary approach to examining policies and greater security conversations in Cold War Congo and across Africa via digital canopies, network analysis, and programming toolsWhile this is a larger multi-layered approach of a larger project, the paper will address the role of macro and micro trends and how these can complement traditional historiesMuch of the history of Cold War has been examined from a binary – from East-West, top-down, or winner-loserHowever, the Congo Crisis was a small fragment of what could become a larger analysis of the spatial integration of decolonizing Africa or interlinking a variety of 1950s and 1960s Pan-African digital projectsThe paper will examine how leaders in the 1950s- met across borders to highlight meetings, parties, and groupingsIt will particularly focus on those which have been previously less historically studied such as the movement and collaboration of those that were fraught underneath that of the national leaders, as well as the varying groupings such as womenThe paper will highlight how local networks can be illuminated in a digital spider web that the international community was attracted to during the early independence period.

Author: Rume Kpadamrophe

Title: Chants of Freedom, Acts of Defiance: Women’s Resistance in Timbuktu

Abstract: In the vast expanses of the Sahara, where history and sand intertwine, Abderrahmane Sissako’s film Timbuktu emerges as a visual poem narrating the ordeal of the eponymous city under the grip of jihadists in 2012. Within this dark canvas of occupation, a singular light emanates from the women of Timbuktu, weaving shards of resistance amidst the shadows of fanaticism. Among these women, Zabou, deemed “mad,” emerges as a central figure, embodying an enigmatic form of resistance. Another woman, whipped for singing, transforms the act of suffering into a bold declaration of freedom. Simultaneously, a vendor, defying the dictates of the jihadists, embodies resistance in everyday life. This study will delve into how these women in Timbuktu have chosen unconventional paths to resist, exploring the relevance of the concept of “social non-movements” proposed by the Iranian sociologist Asef Bayat. This concept, describing collective actions of unorganized individuals, offers an innovative perspective for understanding the dynamics of resistance in a context where women are institutionally oppressed by patriarchy.


Author:  Sandra Joireman

Title: Property Confiscation in the Zanzibar Revolution

Abstract:  Much of the literature on the Zanzibari revolution of 1964 highlights different perspectives and contested views of the events (e.g. Burgess 2002, Barwani et al. 2003, Clayton 1981, Glassmann 2000, Lofchie 1965, Maliyamkono 2000, Loimeier 2006). Attention has been given to the time of politics (zama za siasa) leading to the violence as well as the subsequent coming into power of Karume and the formation of the union between Zanzibar and Tanganyika. There have also been studies following the paths of those who fled the islands of Zanzibar in the aftermath of the revolution, especially people of Asian and Arab descent. Based on an in-depth engagement with the confiscation orders published in the Zanzibar gazettes between 1964 and 1987 this article sets out to introduce this particular dataset and embed it in the wider literature on the Zanzibar revolution and the socialist politics that followed. We conducted oral histories with Omani-Zanzibaris in Oman, accessed archived public records, and used spatial analysis on a dataset we constructed out of the public records. By providing insights on the amount, location, and subjects of confiscations this article illuminates property confiscations during and after the revolution and provides a basis for further inquiry. The article contributes to new understandings of the nature and impact of the Zanzibar Revolution as well as touching on an issue that remains of great importance to those whose families lost property during and after the revolution. 

Author:  Marame Gueye

Title: A Soul of Small Places: Re-Imagining African Agency and the Role of Male Allies in the Fight Against Gender Violence in Senegal

Abstract:  The 2023 Caine Prize was awarded to Mame Bougouma Diene and Whoppa Diallo. This is the first time that the prize is awarded to a duo, and a writer from Senegal. In the short story “A Soul of Small Places,” Diene and Diallo, who in real life are husband and wife, fictionalize Whoppa’s own story of sexual abuse, weaving in local Pulaar lore about a woman who turned into a stone in the aftermath of her rape. This stone frames the narrative about the fictional Whoppa, who turns her assault into a force to save young girls from predators. Diene and Diallo’s literary collaboration offers the possibility to center African ways of knowing and dealing with trauma. It also shows that literature can bring visibility to gender violence in Senegal and serves as a model of how male allies can contribute to fighting gender violence. 

Author:  Edward Tejeda

Title: The effectiveness of art therapy when treating youth gang members with trauma

Abstract: This research proposal aims to investigate the effectiveness of art therapy as a treatment approach for trauma experienced by youth gang members. The study seeks to explore the potential benefits of art therapy in improving the well-being and mental health outcomes of youth involved in gangs who have experienced trauma. The results of this research are expected to contribute to the existing literature on art therapy and trauma, particularly within the context of youth gang involvement. Findings will provide valuable insights into the potential impact of art therapy as a complementary intervention for youth gang members dealing with trauma. The study’s implications may extend to the development and implementation of more tailored and effective therapeutic interventions for this vulnerable population. As well as, taking a deeper look at different theoretical perspectives that can give clinicians a better insight on how trauma impacts this particular group. It is anticipated that this research will highlight the significance of art therapy in promoting emotional expression, resilience, and recovery among youth involved in gangs. The findings will support the call for further research and investment in art therapy programs targeted at this population, while also underscoring the importance of integrating trauma-informed care approaches within gang rehabilitation efforts. Overall, this research proposal seeks to contribute to our understanding of the effectiveness of art therapy when treating trauma among youth gang members, providing evidence-based recommendations for the improvement of mental health services and interventions for this underserved population.

Author: Sara Ghebremicael

Title: Climate and Conflict Impacts on Food Security – Tigray, Ethiopia


Globally, more than two billion people experience moderate to severe food insecurity, resulting in malnutrition and negative health outcomes. Agricultural systems are universally dependent on temperature and rainfall, making food security vulnerable to climate change. Vulnerability to food security and climate change are particularly apparent in Ethiopia, where agricultural systems are dominated by rainfed agriculture and traditional farming practices. Exacerbating the threat of climate change in Ethiopia, an armed conflict worked to undermine mitigation and household resilience. The onset of the war on Tigray in November 2020 brought with it a large-scale humanitarian disaster. A man-made blockade and region-wide communications blackout ensued, isolating Tigray from emergency food assistance and medical supplies. The war has also resulted in large-scale agricultural abandonment, with farming populations forcibly displaced and farm animals, irrigation systems, and farm equipment damaged. Agricultural input supply chains and production were immobilized following a military-enforced ban on farming and planting – thus using famine as a strategic weapon of warfare. Conditions of starvation, mass migration, and dependence on external food sources then followed. The population in need of emergency food aid increased from less than one million to over 5.2 million (91% of Tigray) in a 7-month period, from November 2020 to June 2021. With this motivation, this study will use a multi-scale and mixed methods research design to focus on the intersecting issues of conflict and climate change, and their impacts on food security in Tigray, Ethiopia.

Author: Alice R. Burmeister

Title:  Strategies for Success: Reconsidering the Impact of Chinese Factory Production of Enamelware and Print Textiles in Northern Nigeria and Niger


The establishment of Chinese enamelware factories such as the Northern Enamelware Company in Kano, Nigeria in the 1950s, and the more recent Chinese takeover in the 1990s of the Enitex print textile factory in Niamey, Niger, both serve as testimonials to the powerful role of China in the production of popular mass-produced goods in West Africa. Indeed, Chinese-produced enamelware bowls/dishes and printed textiles are arguably some of the most common items found in West African households. This is particularly true for the Hausa people of Northern Nigeria and Niger, who prioritize the ability to acquire large quantities of these items as a way to communicate wealth and social status, as demonstrated by cultural practices such as the elaborate presentation and gifting of these types of items during marriage festivities, and the creation of large houseware displays by married women in their homes.

Although local consumer practices and aesthetic preferences for enamelware and print textiles have been noted for many ethnic groups across West Africa, little attention has been paid to the role that local Chinese production strategies may have played in the promotion of particular practices during certain time periods, or how Chinese-owned factories may have depended upon African designers to create unique textile prints or enamelware designs that would appeal to local consumer tastes. This paper will examine the marketing and design strategies found to be in operation at the Northern Enamelware Co. and Enitex factories during my field visits in the late 1990s that suggest a consistent and financially successful model for Chinese factories working within the African context. In reconsidering the important role that China has played both in terms of the production and marketing of these items, in addition to the adherence to local aesthetic preferences in object design, a fuller and more accurate understanding of China’s powerful impact on African material culture practices will hopefully emerge.

Author: Taylor Hunkins

Title: Playful Places: How Maasai Mbili are Making Art for Their Kibera Community

Abstract: Maasai Mbili (M2) has been recognized as an important node within the broader art network in Nairobi—one that moves in between and collaborates with formal and informal spaces including studios, residency spaces, galleries, and museums. In scholarship about the collective, the focus has been on their social and spatial infrastructure—the development of their studio and the educational programing and resources they provide to Kibera. Yet little work has focused on the methods and strategies M2 uses in their creative production or how their art works within the local community. With key artists in the collective interested place-making practices, I argue that M2 utilize play as a spatial and generative practice within their installations and socially engaged creative interventions. This paper will examine a wide breadth of M2 art projects, including their 2D works, public performances, installations, and social interventions. Their emphasis on play (and place-) making offers new social configurations in Kibera, subverting ongoing tensions around land, tenure security, and urban belonging.

Author: Rebecca Wolff

Title: Reconsidering the Uli Aesthetics at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka Through the Lens of the Nigerian Civil War (1967-1970


This paper foregrounds Nigeria as a post-war society, in addition to a post-colonial one, to reposition how we understand Nigerian contemporary art. An unresolved sense of trauma surrounds the Nigerian Civil War (1967–1970), and it has been a driving impetus behind significant aspects of a wide range of artistic practices. Artists have used their art to convey the underlying sense of loss the war has caused through the invocation of memory and by providing testimony. As part of a larger book project, this paper examines the artists who studied and taught in the Department of Fine and Applied Arts in the immediate postwar decade, including Uche Okeke, Chike Aniakor, and Obiora Udechukwu. They developed an artistic approach based on uli, a form of body and wall painting practiced by Igbo women, which quickly became the department’s defining aesthetic. I situate this turn towards uli within the context of Nigeria’s post-war reintegration policy. I show how it aligned with the Federal Military Government’s post-war rhetoric of “unity in diversity.” It was a way for artists to celebrate their cultural and regional identity, and remember their wartime past, while asserting themselves as Nigerian once again. At the same time, many artists utilized their uli-based practices to testify to wartime traumatic experiences and their lingering effects on the post-war present. As this paper demonstrates, a study of artwork surrounding the civil war can open Nigerian contemporary art up to discussions of how artists act as witnesses and engage with trauma and memory.

Author: Trenton Zylstra and Kelsey Rooney

Title: Investigations into a mid-20th century Senegalese pirogue and the development of the Senegambian boat-building tradition

Abstract: In the late 1960s, a British adventurer purchased a small fishing boat from Senegal, used it to build a catamaran, and then sailed across the Atlantic to the US. This paper discusses the original construction of the vernacular watercraft, known colloquially in Senegal as a pirogue. This term, broadly applied to numerous local, vernacular watercraft, has been used since the Portuguese encountered the West African shoreline in the 15th century. Watercraft, already critical components of local subsistence and commerce, soon became an integral part of the negotiations between Europeans and Africans. The descendants of these 15th century boats continue to be omnipresent in Senegambian coastal life seen in their dozens and hundreds along the shoreline. By taking a close look at this watercraft, now at the Field Museum, we seek to give insights into the historical changes to the construction and operation of Senegalese watercraft in the mid-20th century. The reaction of Senegambian boatbuilders to the rapidly changing economic circumstances of 20th century Senegal and the Gambia, in particular the rise of peanut exports, exemplifies their adaptability and ingenuity.

Author: Liza Malcolm

Title: Exploring Attitudes Towards COVID-19 Vaccination in Kono District, Sierra Leone

Abstract: As COVID-19 spread rapidly, many communities around the globe anxiously waited for a vaccine to shield themselves and their loved ones. At the early stages of the pandemic, it was widely believed that Africa would be a major source of infection. Vaccinating communities became a major goal among local and global health authorities. However, when the COVID-19 vaccine became available in March 2021 in Sierra Leone, it did not gain traction with local communities. While much literature has focused on access and distribution, a growing number of studies discuss vaccine hesitancy as influencing low vaccine uptake. Shifting attention to understanding the determinants of vaccine hesitancy remains fundamental to increasing vaccination rates, as negative vaccine beliefs might delay or prevent vaccination. The local community perspective is especially important as vaccine behaviors may be more malleable when met with historically and contextually sensitive interventions (Fisayo 2021).

This study seeks to do this by assessing, through semi-structured qualitative interviews, the vaccine attitudes and experiences of residents of Sierra Leone’s Kono District. Furthermore, in contrast to applying “knowledge-deficit” models of belief, this study draws upon the vaccine anxieties framework (Leach et al. 2022). This framework recognizes that vaccines are “substantially emotional, social, and political devices” (Fisayo 2021). This study’s findings suggest that important bodily, social, and political factors, including fear of side effects and distrust of government, influence people’s COVID-19 vaccine attitudes. It is hoped that this study’s findings will inform future policy and interventions related to vaccine uptake in Africa and globally.

Author: Christian Doll

Title:  Small-Scale Money Transfer in Post-War South Sudan

Abstract: With the recent transferral and closure of displaced people’s camps in South Sudan, state actors signaled that the war that began in 2013 was over. But for people who lost whole communities and for whom the camps have been their only stable home, the question of what resettling and rebuilding might mean remains deeply uncertain. Drawing on ongoing collaborative ethnographic research, this paper offers an analysis of the history, context, and work of a locally-run money transfer organization operating at the center of this uncertainty. The organization was founded by South Sudanese development professionals and entrepreneurs to link up and offer financial services to the people most impacted by recent conflict: giving unbanked, displaced, and disconnected communities a means to connect. The small-scale but widely dispersed alternative infrastructure has deliberately operated outside the purview and between the gaps of state-led and humanitarian aid initiatives. Its usage demonstrates how new forms of community, connection, value, and futurity are being conceived of and enacted in the shadow of conflict. Its perseverance suggests the creative ways people adapt to ever-changing (and seemingly impossible) circumstances. Drawing inspiration from Francis Nyamjoh’s notion of “incompleteness” and renewed attention to futurity in African Studies, the paper probes how informal, bottom-up, and socially-driven infrastructures emerge and transform in conflict-impacted contexts across Africa. In putting the views and voices of community members and local practitioners in conversation with postcolonial theory, the paper hopes to generatively contribute to the conference’s discussion of new perspectives, opportunities, and challenges in African Studies.

Author: Anmol Sahni

Title: Metonymical Nations and Synecdochical Families: Writing Back to the Ugandan and East African Self with Metafiction in Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s Kintu

Abstract: This article argues that Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s novel Kintu localizes narrative tropes from the popular genre of historiographic metafiction to represent political contingencies of gender, sexuality, and nationalism for Ugandan and, by extension, East African readers. In doing so, Kintu, I suggest, both instantiates and augments a novelistic tradition theorized by Ewan Mwangi (in Africa Writes Back to Self), in which African writers use unique rhetorical and aesthetic strategies to address—first and foremost—African publics and peer publications, as opposed to writing back to the erstwhile empires, as has been suggested by Ashcroft et al. in their seminal work The Empire Writes Back. Parsing the self-reflexive scenes in which the family appears in a synecdochical and metonymical relationship to the nation, the first two parts demonstrate that the Kintu family serves as a synecdochical site for state sovereignty, or, as Susan Andrade would describe, that the Kintu family is represented as the “nation writ small” in this intergenerational family saga. While Andrade in The Nation Writ Small contends that the oeuvre of first-generation African women novelists, though neglected, is equally involved in post-independence nationalist debates as the works of their male counterparts, my reading of metafiction in Kintu expands Andrade’s contention to a contemporary context. I thus proffer that recently published novels by African women writers, such as Kintu, are genealogically affiliated with first-generation women writers, insofar as these works continue to be thematically invested in feminist concerns about depicting women’s disillusionment with nationalism as linked to their marginalization and oppression of other sexual minorities. Part three examines Makumbi’s metafictional techniques for speculating on the discourse about the criminalization of homosexuality in Uganda. Overall, the article redresses a lacuna in existing scholarship on Kintu by foregrounding the novel’s overlooked thematic triangulation of issues relating to gender, sexuality, and nationalism.


Author: Seth Palmer

Title:  ‘They Need to Speak Knou in Public All the Time’: Enregistering Lowly Caste, Marked Racialized Ethnicity, and Transgressive Gender/Sexuality in Antananarivo

Abstract: The knou linguistic register has fostered vibrant social networks of same-sex desiring and gender-variant, male-bodied persons throughout Madagascar, but particularly in the capital city. Its circulation has allowed speakers to reconceptualize their sex/gender and social worldings in their own terms through a shared yet ever changing lexicon. Literature in linguistic anthropology has long emphasized this community-building capacity of argots, registers, and sociolects created and employed by their speakers. While knou fosters a sense of belonging among those who create and employ it, the register also embodies long-standing stigma held against speech styles that diverge from the formal, Official dialect of Malagasy. These include speech styles that are enregistered with lower-class and caste populations, feminine speech, and all dialects associated with ethnicities other than Merina – the dominant ethnic group in the capital. In the context of highly stratified, Christian social life in Antananarivo, knou speakers who are of elite status risk losing face when publicly speaking the register and frequenting the social geographies where it has developed. Underserved, poor speakers bearing transgressive genders and sexualities, who have less social capital to begin with, are more likely to embrace the shame wedded to the lexicon and actively participate in this speech community.

Author: Ben Burgen

Title: Resilience and Opportunity: Building Rural Futures in Senegal River Valley

Abstract: In this paper, I explore how some rural people in the Senegal River Valley are creating viable local futures for themselves and their families. Based on my ethnographic research in a farming town I call Keur Toma, I argue that many households are finding ways to consistently prioritize the continuity of their rural way of life despite persistent challenges ranging from low wages and limited job opportunities to recurrent drought and desertification. This resilient rurality is rooted in deeply embedded cultural ideals and a continuation of long-standing patterns of cooperation and interdependence at the local level. Yet it moves beyond a simple repetition of social and economic traditions because it represents a broad-based attempt to not only adapt to, but also profit from the global economic asymmetries that place people on the periphery and devalue their labor. Under these imbalanced circumstances labor migrants abroad can benefit their family and community at home by maintaining strong social networks and sending regular remittances. Collective living abroad also keeps migrants tightly bound to the social, political, and economic life of their hometown by integrating them into a familiar migrant community focused on the homeland. This hometown-focused disposition is further encouraged by the respect, praise, and encouragement that migrants receive from home. These factors all work together to reinforce the circuits which enable migrants and non-migrants to work together to take advantage of the realities of uneven global economic integration in their efforts to build viable rural futures in the Senegal River Valley.

Author: Adamu Danjuma Abubakar

Title: À la découverte d’une plume inconnue: Achille Sylvestre Ndonaye


In our time, it is somewhat challenging to find authors from the Central African Republic (CAR) studied, for example, in the Americas and Europe. This is not due to a lack of merit but rather to limited access to local publishing houses. However, thanks to social networks such as Facebook, we have had the privilege of exploring the works of CAR authors in our rapidly changing world, albeit one that is complex and deeply immersed in words aiming to speak truth to power, make it more accountable, and challenge the status quo. It could be conceded that authors of Central African origin are somewhat overshadowed behind the curtain of the many writers in the region, creating the impression that the Central African pen has run dry. In general, literature is often considered the mirror of society. However, without the multiple contributions of “literati” in this field of knowledge, one could not speak today of a supposed mirror. Thus, through this presentation, we will meet Achille, a poet and writer from the Central African Republic.


Author: Huijoo Shon and Sora Han

Title:  Reconceiving community development as spatial practice in the realm of environmental justice:  The case of grassroots movements in African nations

Abstract: Grassroot movements as community-driven development within their settlements pursue better environments of everyday geographies in African countries. This study uses the term practice as analytical extensions of the conventional spatial practice concept that adopts perspectives from environmental justice. The normative realm of environmental justice provides philosophical grounds to reconceive this practice as process in production of their places and moments towards the justice. This notion focuses on the way to constitute potential opportunities to transform them in a way trailed to each settlement. The practice encompassing various actors can be interpreted beyond the dichotomies of formal-informal and individual-collective. We employ this approach to develop a conceptual framework for analyzing grassroot practices that aligns with south-eastern turn in urbanism and environmental studies. The proposed framework builds inclusive weighting on resident’s behavior, voice, and indigenous knowledge to understand and promote community-level practices. For this research, we leverage data from African community organizations that have participated in the grassroots movement initiative supported by a non-profit foundation. The African organizations participating in the support program have addressed health, environmental, and safety issues within their communities using local resources and perspectives. The scientific examination of their practices with the notion of environmental justice may enhance our understanding of grassroots movements.

Author: Liz Timbs

Title:  Rumor in Zululand and Natal in Local, National, and International Perspective, 1901-1916

Abstract:  Between 1901 and 1916, officials in Natal and Zululand reported rumors that ranged in focus from impending cattle seizures to soldiers seizing local women for their brides to looming German infiltration of Northern Zululand. Though government officials reported these whispers with concern and intent to stifle public discourse, their presence in the archive opens a window into African understandings and interpretations of social and political change in the context of early twentieth-century South Africa. While these archival whispers centered on major national and international events, from the South African War to World War One, this article approaches these rumors in the larger context of social change amongst Zulu-speakers in early twentieth-century South Africa. The shift from colonial to Union government and the Zulu struggle to gain paramount chief status are evident in seemingly random rumors; whispers from mostly nameless actors who, through the written records of local administrators, reach out to contemporary readers to challenge interpretations of seemingly unrelated historical phenomena. Reading these rumors in conversation with the government responses highlights African understandings of larger events through the prism of government anxieties over the power of local authorities in a period of global uncertainty. Building on foundational studies of the role of rumor in African history, this article utilizes records from local magistrates, the Secretary of Native Affairs and the Chief Native Commissioner, re-centering African actors in public debates over the uncertain future of the Union of South Africa. An approach grounded in social history expands our understanding of how local reactions to global phenomena, expanding not only historians’ ability to frame responses to global struggle but to rethink our approach in reading against the grain of African archives.


Author: Cathy Skidmore-Hess

Title: They cannot kill just for destruction: development and game control in early twentieth-century Botswana

Abstract: Weak colonial infrastructure combined with an impoverished Batawana kgosi, ensured that taxes would be collected in a haphazard fashion. This, however, did not prevent the British colonial administration from attempting to assert control over the region. This was done in multiple ways including tying the Batawana leadership to the administration center of Maun and putting forward a series of game proclamations.  Both the creation of a permanent administrative center and environmental regulation were often articulated as development projects designed to direct people and the environment.   These efforts increased following World War I and gained momentum in the era of “high science” during and following World War II.  In response, the region’s Tswana leadership voiced their own concerns in terms of conservation and sovereignty.  Other groups in the region, including the Batawana (a Tswana group) “scattered” making it more difficult for colonial authorities to assert control. This paper considers discourses of conservation and development at the frontiers of colonial power and interest. In so doing, it asserts that multiple parties claimed to be acting in the interests of development and conservation as a means of asserting rights to resources and labor.

Author: Stephen M. Magu

Title:  Explaining Kenya’s Foreign Policy 1963 – 2023: History, Issues, Decisions, Expectations, Strategies and Consequences

Abstract: International relations (and international studies) continue to be heavily informed by theoretical constructs from the west. Even as scholars concede differences (in Africa and elsewhere) not wholly explained by western theories, the dearth scholarship on how to understand Africa stands out as the norm, rather than the exception. The field of foreign policy is such area. Africa’s foreign policy is seen as influenced by pre-, colonial, and post-colonial experiences and global developments such as the Cold War and its aftermath. In this context, how can we understand the foreign policy of Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Ethiopia, Tanzania, South Africa, Kenya or even Somalia? Do western-derived foreign policy theories explain African nations’ foreign policy? What have been the most salient foreign policy events in African nations and how can we make sense of them, evaluating them through the lenses of African peoples, knowledge, experiences and in the context of greater global developments? This project takes a first stab at this question. With a focus on Kenya, the research focuses on and details the pre-colonial realities of Kenyan peoples, the onset of western socio-economic and political encroachment and control, Kenyan Africans’ responses to colonialism through armed opposition, collaborations with other Pan Africans to achieve independence, post-independence conflicts (such as the Shifta War against Somalia), secession, the Cold War’s regional impact, internal massacres, external interventions, near-genocides and new constitutions, and global multilateralism, among others. Ultimately, with regard to Kenya’s foreign policy choices and preferences, the monograph concludes that there exists a distinct, discernible Kenyan foreign policy influenced by a mix of domestic concerns and regional interests, continental trends, and global currents, but also one that responds to uniquely African ideas, e.g., ubuntu, itself a key variable in Kenya and African nations’ foreign policy.

Author: Christophe Ippolito

Title: On France’s current challenges in Sahel Region

Abstract:  Explaining the difficulties recently encountered by France in the Sahel exclusively by an irrational anti-French “sentiment” linked to the colonial past, as seen in several media, does not seem to be entirely satisfying. While there is no denying a general anti-French sentiment exist from Senegal to Cameroon, has been relayed by social networks as well as other media, and has only become more visible with the recent coups, there are also rational, objective reasons to these difficulties. This communication will focus on these rational, objective reasons in three countries that present a number of similarities with respect to their current relationship to France: Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger. It will determine to which extent French authorities can objectively be considered partly responsible for the current situation, assess the damage done so far, and suggest actionable items that could contribute to improving the situation for the benefit of both these countries and France. While questionable choices and inconsistencies in terms of foreign policy or military commitments, as well as questionable actions, decisions and communication practices from the French administration (from the French executive branch to local consulates) will be analyzed, this communication will also focus on how domestic policies (from immigration policy to “anti-separatist” laws) affect the image of France in largely Muslim countries that send many migrants to France. Questionable counter-discourses developed in circles close to the current French government (from the Montaigne Institute to state-sponsored media) will also be studied.



Title: Extending higher educational literacy through historical analysis, literary criticism, and translation

Covener: Bill F. Ndi, Tuskegee University

Abstract: While the theme of this roundtable discussion might come off as a platitude, the true merits and gains of both literary criticism and translation have not been examined in the light of their advancement of literacy in higher educational circles. Through this discussion, the panelists will use their respective published works, i.e. books of literary criticism, historical analysis and works in translation to highlight the merits and significant contribution of each work. One might wonder and even ask questions as to why criticism, historical analysis and Translation. And the response rests in the rapprochement between translation, historical analysis and criticism as all seek to clarify the meaning of a text/events, even if in the case of translation, it so does by means of an equivalent target-language text. These forms of knowledge elucidation strive to communicate meaning in the interest of the public and not of the critic nor the translator or historian. One of the principal functions of historical analysis, criticism and translation is to express the shifts in sensibility or to rekindle interest in a text. If translation has been hitherto regarded as a form of betrayal, central to this roundtable is the question of gains derived from the result of translation, historical analysis, and literary criticism. Do these academic endeavors impact higher educational readership? How? Why or why not? Sartre’s thought here below will inform most of the conversation:

the critic may announce that French thought is a perpetual colloquy between Pascal and Montaigne not in order to make those thinkers more alive but to make thinkers of his own time more dead. Criticism [and translation] can antagonize authors even when [they] it performs [their] its function well. Authors who regard literature as needing no advocates or investigators are less than grateful when told that their works possess unintended meaning or are imitative or incomplete.

Sartre, J.P.

In short, this roundtable seeks to add a new perspective to how these disciplinary exercises attempt to construct a new paradigm of radical education and mobilization in post-colonial societies dominated by ideas that endeavor to silence voices and nullify new visions.


  • Bill F. Ndi, Tuskegee University, Translating The Journal of John Woolman
  • Benjamin Hart Fishkin, Tuskegee University, The Absurd and The Cameroonian Tragedy at Decolonization
  • Viviane Koua, Auburn University, Translating Emmanuel Fru Doh’s Boundaries
  • Godfrey Vincent, Wilberforce University, Rebels at the Gates: The Oilfields Workers’ Trade Union in the Era of George Weekes, 1962-1987


Author: Devon Maloney and Alfredo Rojas

Title: Mapping Fine-scale Land Degradation Neutrality in Northern Togo: A Pilot Participatory Study Using Unpiloted Aerial Vehicles

Abstract: Land degradation is a prominent environmental threat and obstacle to sustainable development in Africa’s drylands. This study reports on the novel use of unpiloted aerial vehicles (UAVs – drones) and participatory methods to map local patterns of land degradation, rehabilitation, and neutrality among three field sites in the Savanes Region of northern Togo. The research goal was to evaluate the ability of drones to efficiently detect fine-scale features of both degradation and rehabilitation, which is often not possible with other remotely sensed products. The results indicate that UAV imagery can detect both processes for individual localities, but this is limited to very small areas. Input from communities and regional specialists was used to define relevant classes. Supervised classifications based on stakeholder input were then applied to calculate per-site land-use and land-cover (LULC) and estimate tree cover, uncultivated vegetation, bare soils, and exposed rock. The results show that land degradation is more prevalent than rehabilitation and that the three villages exhibit a spectrum of land degradation neutrality from low to high.


Author: Rajah Saparapa

Title: Toward Community-Based Environmental Management: Understanding Community Attitudes Toward Togo’s Fazao Malfakassa National Park

Abstract: Protected areas are important for biodiversity conservation but can impact local communities. This study assessed the attitudes and perceptions of communities near Fazao-Malfakassa National Park, Togo towards the park and its impacts. Fazao-Malfakassa, established in 1956 during the colonial era, is Togo’s largest protected area at 192,000 hectares. Semi-structured household surveys were conducted in June-July 2017 in six adjacent villages (n=150). Results showed ambivalent attitudes – most respondents did not want the park abolished but sought access for activities like farming and fishing. Wildlife disturbance was the main complaint. Logistic regression analysis revealed factors like gender, ethnicity, education, and land ownership influenced attitudes. Females, married respondents, those with less education, recent migrants, and landowners were more likely to want abolition. Findings suggest a community-based approach is needed to sustain conservation objectives. Through economic incentives, capacity-building, and participation in management, local communities’ needs can be accommodated along with biodiversity goals. This study provides insights into drivers of community attitudes useful for policymakers seeking to balance conservation and development in Togo.


Author: Taylor Ouellette

Title:  Agent-Based Modeling Land Dispossession & Conflict in Kruger National Park’s Makuleke Region

Abstract: This agent-based model explores the relationship between large-scale protected areas and indigenous communities, using South Africa’s Kruger National Park as a case study. While protected areas are integral for global conservation efforts, this agent-based model sheds light on the historical injustices and forced displacements associated with their establishment. Focusing on the Makuleke community’s dispossession in the upper-northernmost section of Kruger National Park, known as the Makuleke Region or the Pafuri Triangle, agent-based modeling is employed using NetLogo to visualize the dynamics of conflict between park rangers and the local community from the 1800s to the late 1900s. The model explores how the expansion of the park, driven by colonial legacies, led to land dispossession, displacement, and conflicts over resource access.


Author: Sehdia Mansaray

Title:  Toposequences and Transects: Spatializing Mossi Soil Classifications Using Field Data and GIS

Abstract: The United Nations estimates a third of Burkina Faso’s land is degraded, with critical implications for the livelihoods and food security of rural farming communities. Perceptions of rural African communities can position land users as destructive, ignorant, and monolithic in management or stewardship of their environment. At worse, these perceptions reify dichotomous views of nature and culture as separate spheres where ‘Westernized’ scientists or techno-managerial approaches stand above ‘folk science’ and land users who are active in – and not reactive to – degradation. Transect walks, grounded in ethnoecology, provide deeper engagement with discourses and perceptions surrounding ecological change through locally produced spatial data. The resulting data provides insight into relationships between Mossi indigenous soil classifications (toposequences), land use, and ecological change as well as strategies to map that relationship. Ethnoecology and transect walks are well positioned to highlight local environmental knowledge and the initiatives taken to address land degradation, such as locally driven greening.


Author: Shannon Vance

Title: ‘The Continent that Lies Beyond’: Navigating Consumptions and Resistances to Colonialism with ‘Hidden Transcripts’ in l’AOF Senegal

Abstract: James Scott wrote in Domination and the Arts of Resistance, “… to conclude that subordinate groups essentially lack a political life or that what political life they do have is restricted to those exceptional moments of popular explosion… is to miss the immense political terrain that lies between quiescence and revolt… It is to focus on the visible coastline of politics and miss the continent that lies beyond.” In this paper, following the theme of the conference, I take another look at James Scott’s and Robin D.G. Kelley’s theoretical approaches to analyzing groups of people without direct political power. My approach will re-interrogate political expression, from speeches to newspaper articles to rallies by Senegalese leaders. This paper focuses on African audiences to which such expressions were addressed. What conclusions may we begin to draw about the people who consumed political rhetoric and spectacle? What hidden transcripts may be brought into relief by such an exercise that navigates the rocky shoals between African cultures and desires and the dominations of French colonialism?


Author: Lynn B. Harris

Title:  Typhus, polio, and ‘dagga’ (cannabis): Highlighting the Trials and Tribulations of Public Health in Union of South Africa

Abstract: In the 1940s Dr. Rijno Smit (1902-1976), my grandfather, served as Chief Medical Inspector in the Union Department of Health for Transkei and Ciskei, Bantustans of the Union of South Africa, then a self-governing dominion of the British Empire. In 1939 there was not a single rural health clinic, and the plague, typhus, and smallpox were rife. In a ten-year period, he completed a census of 1.4 million people, and established 40 clinics financed by the Chamber of Mines that drastically reduced life-threatening disease outbreaks. Smit also initiated a welfare scheme for training black women in health and other community services submitting detailed reports advocating for neglected government services to Bantustan communities. In later years, Smit was promoted to Head of the Division of Nutrition and Health Education, travelling widely in Europe in connection with nutritional research to continue to serve black communities of South Africa highlighting innovative ways to combine traditional and European medical practices. In years before retirement, he became the district surgeon in the city of Cape Town organizing a team that embarked upon a public polio immunization scheme in which South Africa led the world. Additionally, he assisted in medical trials using South African produced ‘dagga’ (cannabis) with human volunteers. The research for this paper combines Rijno Smit’s personal papers, government reports, and correspondence held in archive of the South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR) at The University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. In this paper I address the historical significance of public health challenges and advocacy in both the past and present-day South Africa. I call for future research into medical history and public health activism in South Africa.


Author: Jarvis L. Hargrove

Title: North Carolina Emigration to Liberia in the 19th and 20th Century

Abstract: In 1816, the American Colonization was formed as an organization devoted to creating an alternative for free blacks and those formerly enslaved by sending them to Africa. By 1823, segments of this population were boarded on ships to emigrate to the West African territory of Liberia, a nation whose capital was named at United States President James Monroe. Funded by money from the federal government, in 1829, the state of North Carolina became home to 11 auxiliary groups of the American Colonization Society, stretching from Rowan County in the Western part of the state to Hertford and Chowan counties in the Eastern portion. In the months and years after the creation of these auxiliary groups, in North Carolina individuals emancipated their slaves through wills arranging for the transport to Liberia. Both the free black population and those formerly enslaved began boarding ships as early as the 1840s from Craven, Pasquotank, Chowan, Bertie, Camden, Perquimans, Cabarrus, Iredell, Bladen, Hertford, Franklin, Edgecombe, Orange, Mecklenburg, Guilford, Forsyth and Wake Counties. Records for the American Colonization Society suggest more than 3000 individuals from North Carolina boarded ships and left between 1823 and 1905 for areas of Liberia.


Author: Brennan Jenkins

Title: The Queen Mothers Ikegobo: A Symbol for the Achievements Expected of Benin’s Royal Women

Abstract: The altars of the hand, or ikegobo, are one of the many ritual objects that begin to appear in the Kingdom of Benin’s royal court during the 18th century. Since the reign of Akenzua I these objects, which were usually made of wood, were now produced in brass for the kings (oba’s) and queen mothers (Iye Oba’s) of Benin. Altars of the hand celebrate and ritualize imperial achievement, economic prosperity, and patriarchal domination. Each altar is filled with symbolism that legitimizes its patron’s own dominance and power. However, out of the handful that survives the majority are dedicated to Queen Mothers, not the Kings. In a patriarchal society where the Queen Mother is the only woman allowed to possess such an object, what are the requirements of possession? The Queen mother’s altar of the hand housed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, like all Queen Mother ikegobo, lacks the aggressive symbolism characteristic of the altars made for the king and his chiefs. Using oral traditions, anthropological research, and iconographic analysis I will demonstrate how the Queen Mother’s 18th-century altar of the hand was not dedicated to their individuality and socio-economic prowess like their male counterparts. Their altars highlight an idealized supportive role. The altar of the hand produced for the Queen Mother was designed to celebrate her achievement as a mother who gave birth to the king and her role as a supportive agent during the 18th-century intensification of ritualized kingship.


Author: Armani Gibbs

Title: Medical and Health Practices at Sea: Unveiling African Traditions aboard Ships of the Transatlantic Slave Trade in the 18th Century

Abstract: My research uncovers the dietary, sanitation, nutrition, and overall health implications and challenges for both enslaved Africans and European seafarers aboard slave ships. I analyze artifact assemblages from shipwrecks and primary source historical records such as captains’ logbooks, ship surgeons reports and slave narratives. From the preservation and storage of food to the consequences of epidemics, malnutrition and the resilience displayed by those who endured these voyages, I will illuminate another dimension of maritime history. Narratives of medical innovation have long been Eurocentric and have neglected the role of African contributions both aboard ships and to the overall evolution of medicine in the West Indies and North American colonies. Slave traders utilized indigenous medical knowledge to counter diseases they did not know much about in their traditional training.  My research seeks to acknowledge the agency and adaptability of the enslaved Africans. It reinforces the importance of interdisciplinary approaches in understanding the past and the enduring legacies that shape contemporary issues like nutrition, health disparities, and social justice. This presentation includes case studies of slave trade voyages that demonstrate the intersection of maritime archaeology and medical anthropology.  I use the backdrop of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, focusing on the crucial role of health during this dark chapter in history.


Author: Bill F. Ndi

Title:  Francis B. Nyamnjoh’s The Travails of Dieudonné and the presence of Western scholars in Mimboland

Abstract: The cliché, “in Rome do what the Romans do” has never been far from it sememe when it comes to writing and talking about the interaction of western scholars and their scholarship in and about Africa. This panelist intends to explore the ways in which Nyamnjoh as a social anthropologist exploring this thematic in The Travails of Dieudonné depicts both endogenous and exogenous attitude to knowledge acquisition and production. How does this attitude inform the reader of Nyamnjoh’s style, themes, structure, and character development?


Author: Benjamin H. Fishkin

Title: White scholars at the forefront of a black field…

Abstract: In 1957 the African Studies Association (ASA) was formed to promote an exchange of ideas and information about Africa. A person who thinks that black scholars would dominate an academic organization dedicated to the development and wellbeing of a black continent would have myopia. Despite the best intentions of the best observer such a view of the largest globally represented membership organization in the entire world would be nearsighted, naive, and ignorant about how scholarship works in the United States. Institutional racism, unfortunately, has permeated the structure of what should be the least likely of targets. The ASA has never had an editor of its journal (African Studies Bulletin) who is not white. There have been fourteen. The purpose is to exclude black scholars and privilege white scholars in the classroom, in the publishing industry, and in the library.


Author: Viviane Koua

Title: Black Scholars in Black Spaces in the Western world

Abstract: Black writers face serious obstacles entering black or white spaces to explain their own experiences. Fatou Diome and Alain Mabanckou are two African writers who, have lived and still live in predominantly black places in Europe. In their writings, they attempt to illustrate the harsh realities faced by African immigrants in France. Their works depict immigrants with great ambitions and aspirations, when they arrive in their host country. Unfortunately, their hopes are always thwarted by different situations they encounter. In view of the above, we ask ourselves the question of whether these works can inspire other immigrants to agitate peacefully for changing the system, or can their writings convince other writers living in white spaces to try to understand the system in order to advocate for improved conditions for African immigrants through their writings?


Author: Hassan Yossimbom

Title:  Western Literary Canons in African Literary Spaces and African Literary Canons in Western Literary Spaces

Abstract: This presenter intends to investigate why it is customary, almost canonical for Western writers or critics (see Fredric Jameson (1986) controversial article, “Third-World Literature in the Era of Multinational Capitalism” and the Dutch author, Harry Mulisch’s comments about the 1987 AKO prize in Mineke Schipper’s (1999) Imagining Insiders: Africa and the Question of Belonging) to make condescending and sometimes dismissive statements about African texts while at the same time assuming that  African writers and critics are not competent enough to comment on Western literary works.


Author: Yvette Essounga

Title: Complexities, Intricacies, and Repercussions of White and Black Scholars in Black Spaces

Abstract: This panelist intends to delve into the intricacies underlying critical forces in today’s academic research. These forces align with the presence, and recognition, or lack thereof of Black scholars within various spaces, especially in Black spaces. The focus of this reflection will be the consequences of the interplay of White and Black scholars navigating Black spaces. Often, White scholarships are saluted, welcomed, celebrated, and recognized. This lack of recognition, acknowledgment, validation, and even endorsement of Black scholarship results in a deficit that spans many fields. The long-ranging, and far-reaching consequences that the dismissal of Black scholarship has been causing; and continues to cause to business dynamics and corporate culture continue to impact both the local and global levels. The dynamism, competitiveness, and success of businesses, as well as that of society at large depends on the acceptance, recognition, and validation of both Black and White scholarship in Black spaces. Failure to recognize a critical economic segment, represented by the contributions of Black scholars in Black spaces, and all other spaces results in missed opportunities that inevitably leads to the failure to embrace diversity in a global and globalized world that is only marked by diversity, in all dimensions of its fabric.