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Cluster of Excellence EXC 2052 - "Africa Multiple: reconfiguring African Studies"

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“Africa*n Relations: Modalities Reflected” – Cluster conference to take place in July


The second Cluster conference is scheduled for mid-July 2021. It will provide a platform for the global African Studies community to present and debate the latest developments in the field. Focusing on the topic of “Modalities” and taking place in a hybrid format, this will be the first in a series of conferences devoted to the Cluster’s annual themes.

The Africa Multiple Cluster of Excellence will host its second Cluster conference from the 14th to the 17th of July 2021. The title of the conference, “Africa*n Relations: Modalities Reflected”, indicates the endeavour to focus on the Cluster’s 2020-21 annual theme, modalities of relating, understood as a heuristic angle to get a better understanding of the modes of relating we encounter in our study of African lifeworlds. Together with scholars from around the globe, members of the Cluster of Excellence from all five locations will present research results and exchange views on topics that are high on the Cluster’s agenda.

Online conference format

The conference’s format will be online, with events being held and live-streamed in Bayreuth and at the four African Cluster Centres (ACC), and others held virtually as webinars and video conferences. Apart from plenary sessions with keynotes, the conference will feature roundtables and thematic panels revolving around modalities and convened by Cluster members from Bayreuth and the ACCs. Speakers will include junior and senior Cluster members as well as invited guests whose work speaks to the panel theme.

“We are very excited about holding the first Cluster conference focusing on an annual theme,” explains Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Seesemann, spokesperson of the Africa Multiple Cluster of Excellence. “Even though the experience will be different from the magnificent inaugural conference in 2019, we have to adjust to the pandemic and provide the global community of scholars with alternative platforms for debate and discussions. We are looking forward to using this opportunity to foreground the topics that are especially relevant in African Studies today.”

Okwui Enwezor Distinguished Lecture

One of the highlights of the 2021 annual conference will be the first annual Okwui Enwezor Distinguished Lecture. Established as a new lecture series in early 2021, it is designed to feature a prominent artist, curator, or scholar who will engage with groundbreaking contributions to the rethinking of African arts in a global perspective. The renowned art historian Chika Okeke-Agulu from Princeton University will deliver the first edition of the lecture series in honour of the late Okwui Enwezor as part of the Cluster conference on July 15, 2021. (sg)

To register for the conference, please click here

  • For the programm of the conference, please click here.
  • To find the abstract book of the conference, please click here.
  • To find the invitation for the ‘Distinguished Okwui Enwezor lecture’ please click here.

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