We are delighted to announce that the Nordic Africa Institute, in Uppsala, Sweden, is hosting a conference on ‘African Mobilities -Reshaping narratives and practices of circulation and exchange’ from 19th -21st September 2018.
Mobility has always been central to economic, social, cultural, and political formations across the African continent. From the historical migration of entire communities to the circulation of resources and ideas; and from urbanisation dynamics and labour mobility to regional and global participation in new social movements, trade networks, and information sharing, all these movements are at the heart of social processes, past and present, that shape the outlooks and activities of people in all walks of life.
In light of rising concerns over mass displacement and irregular migration towards the global North, the movement of people tends to be seen in an intellectually limiting and politically hostile manner. The unequal distribution of social mobility continues to raise concerns relating to economic and political prospects for African polities. These different mobilities, moreover, combine and overlap in significant ways that are often neglected in public debates and policy initiatives. By highlighting the multiplicity of mobilities that characterise contemporary Africa, and the wider world today, as well as the social, cultural, economic and political anchorage of these movements in localised understandings and agendas, the theme African Mobilities encourages a holistic understanding of human movements as embedded in wider webs of circulation and exchange.
The 2018 Nordic Africa Days invite reflections on the many and varied forms of movement and mobility that characterise contemporary Africa. Contributions may address a diversity of themes, such as:
- the voluntary or involuntary (im)mobility of people within, towards, or away from the continent; circulations and transitions between rural and urban localities;
- dynamics of social mobility and class (in)equalities;
- the circulation and exchange of knowledge, images, ideas and other forms of information;
- the changing flows of resources and capital;
- the complex roles of natural resources in shaping flows of capital, goods, skills, labour, and other migrants;
- the effects of infrastructures, including ICTs, in shaping and producing mobilities;
- and the various roles and expressions of African diasporas across the globe.
PhD candidates and other emerging scholars are strongly encouraged to participate in the conference. The conference aims to be a forum for academic exchange and intellectual development, where contributions from a new generation of researchers are important and welcome. We particularly encourage Africa based scholars or Africanists originating from the continent to participate, and will offer funding for the participation of selected participants from LCD-countries. The conference also provides a venue for dialogue between Africa specialists within academic and policy arenas.
Panel abstracts should include a description of the topic not exceeding 300 words, list of potential presenters and titles of papers, as well as the name and contact details of the panel organizer. Panel organizers are expected to be the chair of their panels and should present a paper. A person can only propose one panel and present one paper at the conference.
Panel proposals should be submitted to: NAD2018@nai.uu.se no later than 15 February 2018.
The Nordic Africa Days (NAD) is the biannual international conference of the Nordic Africa Institute and it has been organized since 1999 in the Nordic Countries. NAD invites researchers and writers working on Africa-related knowledge production and representing the forefront of African academia.