‘Artistic, Digital, and Political Creation in English-Speaking African Countries’
Building on the recent partnership signed between Aix-Marseille Université (AMU) and the Festival de Marseille, the peer-reviewed journal of AMU research centre on Anglophone Studies (LERMA), E-rea, has decided to seize the opportunity of Africa 2020 to dedicate a special issue to contemporary creation in English-speaking African countries. The first part of this double issue will consist of a series of interviews with English-speaking African artists programmed at or connected with the Festival de Marseille, while the second part, which is the subject of this call for papers, will focus on English-speaking African countries as places of contemporary artistic, digital, and political creation. Heeding Kenyan political analyst Nanjala Nyabola’s advice to eschew the too reductive ‘Africa rising’ and ‘Africa failing’ narratives in favour of ‘Africa being’ stories, this special issue wishes to focus on “stories reflecting the ambivalence, complexity, challenges and opportunities of African societ[ies] in an increasingly connected world” (Nyabola xxiv).
This special issue aims at recovering the multiplicity of creative African contexts, while bearing in mind the openness of these contexts, especially in the age of the internet, even if the propension of African people and ideas to circulate within the continent and abroad predated the invention of cyberspace.
You are warmly invited to submit proposals pertaining to the fields of literature, the arts, linguistics, history, sociology, sociology of arts, economics, politics, etc. to explore the following questions, the list of which is by no means restrictive:
-African Arts Programmes: Where and How can African artists develop their skills on the African continent?
-Exhibiting African Arts: How is contemporary artistic creation curated and showcased on the African continent?
-Exporting African Arts: How do English-speaking African artists export their work internationally, within diasporic circuits and beyond?
-Leapfrogging and the future: What is the reality of digital creation on the continent in 2020?
-African cyber activism: What participatory roles are played by artists and digital creation in contemporary politics in English-speaking African countries?
-African societies in the age of hashtags: How are cultural resistance and identity politics mobilized in cyberspace?
-(Re)constituting African heritage: How do African governments, historians and civil societies create the legal and physical conditions for its preservation and postcolonial restoration?
-Rethinking Africa from within: What and who are the contemporary African political and philosophical theories and theorists?
-Africas in relation: How do African countries deal with each other and with non-African countries in a creative way?
Please send an abstract, less than 300 words (with a title) and a bio, not more than 100 words to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org by 1st January 2020. Feedback will be given by the end of January 2020 and final articles expected by 1st April 2020 for online publication in November 2020.
Nanjala Nyabola, Digital Democracy, Analogue Politics : How the Internet Era is Transforming Politics in Kenya, London, Zed Books, 2018.