Call for papers on Creativity, Culture and Identity in Africa and the African Diaspora African Conference 2016 University of Texas, Austin March 24-27, 2016

Call for papers Creativity, Culture and Identity in Africa and the African Diaspora African Conference 2016 University of Texas, Austin March 24-27, 2016

Discussion published by Toyin Falola on Monday, August 10, 2015
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Creativity, Culture and Identity in Africa and the African Diaspora
African Conference 2016
University of Texas, Austin
March 24-27, 2016
Creativity, culture and identity are inter-related. Closely allied to the idea of genius, the discourse of creativity has privileged the individual subject whose Promethean determination, originality, and passion bring into being art, innovation, and excellence. This humanist understanding of creativity still has considerable currency in disciplines such as literature and the arts, psychology, mathematics and the sciences. Related accounts of creativity and the imagination have emerged in numerous other areas, including business, popular psychology, the social sciences, and engineering and technology. The discourse of creativity that surfaces within multiple fields reveals that the notion of the individual creator is not simply widespread, but omnipresent; indeed, it is a fundamental ideology of Western culture. Challenging the individualist and depoliticized ideology of creativity, the conference calls for papers that present alternative accounts of the social and political dimensions of creativity as they relate to invention, technology, work, artistic and cultural production, the body, desire, pedagogy and social change. The conference aims to reach a multidisciplinary academic audience; artists and grassroots activists; the political, journalistic, and information technology communities, and interested members of the general public. The conference promises to create a provocative space for comparative critical dialogue between scholars and dancers, actors and writers, songwriters and singers.
The conference invites papers on all aspects of creativity, identity and culture from the artistic to the scientific and the humanistic. Various disciplines have addressed this issue focusing on how new practices emerge, how individual creators package ideas, and how their ideas transform the landscape. Scholars in all disciplines are invited to propose papers on various aspects, including but not limited to any of the following:
• Creativity, identity and culture profile: What is novel and original among Africans and Black people generally?
• Value added to progress: development ideas, new thinking
• Globalized modernity and its consequences on cultural performances, rhetoric and other forms of expressions.
• The creative process in Africa and the African Diaspora
• Creative thought processes
• Creativity and the everyday
• Creativity, religion and the performance of ritual.
• Gender, imagination, and creative space.
• Ethical issues in creativity: The questions of technological innovations, and stunning improvements in our knowledge of and mastery over the natural world and living organisms—improvements experienced by some as an opportunity for greater health and prosperity vs the concentration of power, wealth and resources in the first world; the concomitant impoverishment of the rest; global environmental destruction; and applications of new knowledge and technology that may be harmful or dangerous.).
• Histories of creativity and inventions: How do historians study creativity? Biographies of such as those of Hubert Ogunde, Duro Ladipo, Kola Ogunmola, etc.
• The politics of creativity: e.g., creativity and resistance, anti-colonial genres, creativity and apartheid, creativity and democratic movements.
• Nollywood: (production, text, marketing, impact, etc.)
• Technology, Information, Innovation. For instance, the ambivalent effects and challenges of proliferating technologies and information.
• “Beyond Art” and an exploration of the current range of artistic and cultural practices, especially in the wake of the drastic shifts in critical paradigms associated with women’s studies, multiculturalism, cultural studies, and queer studies.
• The Expanding Body. For instance: the widespread experimentation and new theorizations with regard to the body and its relation to subjectivity. Papers can theorize the creative interfacings between the body, mind, and spirit, as well as the outside world. One of the most rapid and dramatic changes in modern culture has involved our conceptualizations of the body and its relation to subjectivity. Medical and technological developments have enabled the reconfiguration of the body with organic and/or mechanical supplements; cyborg or post-human bodies are now, to a certain extent, a reality.
• The pedagogy of creativity: the strategies, agents and locations that have sought to transcend the hierarchies and limits of traditional pedagogy. While some may argue that creativity cannot be taught, numerous efforts have been made to imagine and enact a pedagogy that could liberate creativity rather than stifle it. The redefinition of childhood and adolescence, the dramatic shift in what is regarded as useful knowledge, and the impact of technology on human learning and labor all complicate the purpose and practice of those attempting to teach creatively in the service of creativity. Contributors can explore new radical pedagogic strategies that transcend the hierarchies and limits of traditional pedagogy, and thereby support the unpredictable flows and combinations of new creative energies.
• Social Movements: the developments in new social movements and their creative strategies for political organizing, protest, and autonomy; how activists and communities had been imagining and enacting their political aspirations and organizing.

The paper selection process is highly competitive therefore we expect papers that inform new ways of thinking while engaging critical perspectives. Selected papers will be published in book form. Participants in The Africa Conference are drawn from various continents and papers selected for publication are assigned to particular panels according to themes, discipline, or geographical location. Joint panels are welcome. For this year, we welcome presentations that seek to demonstrate theoretical paradigms through the medium of performance.
This conference is committed to professional development of participants and this will be rendered through workshops on writing and getting published in the academia. Graduate students are especially encouraged to attend and present papers and interact with senior scholars to build their own growth process as scholars. This conference encourages interaction between scholars across disciplines, locations and special interests. Ample time will be provided for interactivity between participants.
The deadline for submitting paper proposals is November 23, 2015. Proposals should include a 250-word abstract and title, as well as the author’s name, address, telephone number, email address, and institutional affiliation.
Please submit all abstracts to and
Toyin Falola:
A mandatory non-refundable registration fee of $150 for scholars and $100 for graduate students must be paid immediately upon the acceptance of the abstract. This conference fee includes admission to the panels, workshops, and special events, as well as transportation to and from the conference from the hotel, breakfast for three days, dinner on Friday night, lunch on Saturday, and a banquet on Saturday evening. All participants must raise the funding to attend the conference, including registration fee, transportation and accommodation. The conference does not provide any form of sponsorship or financial support. The University of Texas at Austin does not provide participants with any form of funding support, travel expenses, or boarding expenses.
Convened by: Professor Toyin Falola,
Coordinated by: Abimbola Adelakun and
Daniel Jean-Jacques,
Conference website:…
Categories: Call for Papers, Conference Announcement
Keywords: cultural identity, creativity, identity, African Diaspora, African History/Studies

About African Interdisciplinary Studies Association Website

Prof. Maurice Nyamanga Amutabi is President of African Interdisciplinary Studies Association (AISA), a pioneer professional associaiton bringing together members from all disciplines in Africa and abroad. He is a former Fulbright Scholar who previously worked as Deputy Vice Chancellor at Kisii University and also Director of Research and Professor in Peace and Strategic Studies at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), 2010-2013. He has previously taught at Central Washington University, USA (2005-2010) in African Studies Programme and Moi University (1992-2000) in the Department of Development Studies and other public universities in Kenya. Prof. Amutabi holds a PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA in History and African Studies. He received his B.A (Hons) in 1989 in Political Science and History and M.A in 1991 from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. Maurice Amutabi is co-editor of Regime Change and Succession Politics in Africa: Five Decades of Misrule (with Shadrack Wanjala Nasong’o) – in 2013. Amutabi also co-edited Africa after Fifty Years: Retrospections and Reflections (with Toyin Falola and Sylvester Gundona) in 2012. Amutabi is the author of The NGO Factor in Africa: The Case of Arrested Development in Kenya (New York: Routledge, 2006). Amutabi is co-author of Nationalism and Democracy for People-Centered Development in Africa (Moi University Press, 2000). He has also co-authored Foundations of Adult Education in Africa (Cape Town/Hamburg: Pearson/UNESCO, 2005). He has written two novels, Because of Honor (a novel on Islam in Africa) and These Good People (a novel on corruption in Africa). Amutabi is also the author of Nakhamuma Stories (a collection of short stories from the Abaluyia community of western Kenya). His chapters have appeared in over thirty books. His articles have appeared in several refereed and reputable journals such as African Studies Review, African Contemporary Cultural Studies, Canadian Journal of African Studies, International Journal of Educational Development; and Jenda: A Journal of Culture and African Women Studies. Amutabi has made presentations at over one hundred national and international conferences. Amutabi is the Vice-President of the Kenya Studies and Scholars’ Association (KESSA), Kenya’s premier research and academic organization. He is the editor-in-chief of Kenya Studies Review and Eastern Africa Journal of Humanities and Sciences. Prof. Amutabi has conducted extensive research on many issues of development. He has taught courses on peace and conflict and gender and development. He teaches in the PhD and Masters Programme in the Institute of Peace and Security Studies at Kisii University. He enjoys blogging and writing and is an avid sports fan, but does not support any of team, preferring to support the team that plays well.
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2 Responses to Call for papers on Creativity, Culture and Identity in Africa and the African Diaspora African Conference 2016 University of Texas, Austin March 24-27, 2016

  1. Noel khabwai says:

    Hi,i wonna take project management cert.mean grade c- is it possible during holidays? From cert can i advance to much is certificate course.

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