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Global Black Consciousness

INTRODUCTION:

The Institute for Comparative Modernities (Cornell University) and the Institute of African American Affairs (New York University) will hold the international conference “Global Black Consciousness” on May 11 and 12, 2014, in Dakar, Senegal.  The conference is coordinated by Margo Natalie Crawford and Salah Hassan (Cornell University) and Manthia Diawara (NYU). The conference will coincide with the opening days of the Dakar Biennale (Dak’Art 2014), which opens on May 9, 2014. The two-day gathering will focus on the theme of “Global Black Consciousness,” with invited participants who will present new and unpublished work. 

 

THEME/CONCEPT:

Now that we have such tremendous scholarship on particular identities shaped by the African diaspora (Afro-German, Black British, African American, Afro-Latina/o, Afro-Caribbean, and many more) and tremendous theories of the value and limits of Pan-Africanism, Afro-pessimism, and many other “isms,” how do we create a space for the critical and nuanced analysis of global black consciousness as both a citing of diasporic flows and a grounded site of decolonizing movement? This multi-event and multi-site conference aims to explore the confluence between theories of diaspora and theories of decolonization. Moreover, the crisscrossing of visual art, literature, film, and other cultural productions will be explored alongside the crosscurrent that shaped the transnational flow of black consciousness. The scholars participating in this conference will situate their work in the space of the crisscrossing that occurred as the Black freedom struggle became a layering of locations and dislocations and past, present, and future. 

The 1960s and 70s will be our pivot point as we think about the precursors and legacies of the 1960s and 70s black freedom struggles. From May 9 to June 8, 2014, Dak’Art, la Biennale de l’Art Africain Contemporain, will be held in Dakar. The theme and the occasion allow us to revisit major Black and Pan-African intellectual movements and festivals (such as the Dakar's Festival of World Negro Arts of 1966, Algiers of 1969, and FESTAC 1977 in Lagos, Nigeria, among others) in addition to revisiting individual artistic and intellectual work tied to Africa and the African Diaspora.

 

As a keynote event, there will be a screening of Manthia Diawara’s film Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation (2010), on the Martiniquan philosopher and poet Edouard Glissant. 

The conference’s papers will be published in a co-edited volume entitled Global Black Consciousness. We aim to gather scholarship that opens up and complicates the key paradigms that have shaped the vibrant work on theories and cultural productions of the African diaspora. This conference aims to push the abundant current scholarship on the African diaspora to another dimension—the edge where we think about both the problem and promise of mobilizing “blackness” as a unifying concept. This conference (and by extension the book) brings together literary scholars, historians, visual art critics, and diaspora theorists.

David Hammons

Participants

Hisham Aidi received his PhD in political science from Columbia University, and has taught at Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs, and at the Driskell Center for the Study of the African Diaspora at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is the author of Redeploying the State (Palgrave 2008) a comparative study of privatization and labor movements in Latin America and the Arab world. He is also the editor with Manning Marable of an edited volume titled Black Routes to Islam (Palgrave 2009). As a journalist, he has written for various outlets including Al Jazeera, The New African, ColorLines, Souls and Middle East Report. Dr Aidi was named a Carnegie Scholar in 2009, and a Global Fellow at the Open Society Foundation in 2011. He is currently a Lecturer at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs - and is author most recently of Rebel Music: Race, Empire and the New Muslim Youth Culture (Pantheon 2014).

Ahmed Bedjaoui is a journalist, and film and television producer. He is a graduate of the IDHEC and holds a Ph.D in American literature with a thesis on Scott Fitzgerald and Hollywood in 1983. Since 1969, he has worked as a producer and presenter of cinema programs on Algerian Television, and as a programmer and head of Algerian Film Archives between 1966-1971, and advisor to the Director General of the Office of the Algerian Cinema (ONCIC) from 1971 to 1977. Ahmed Bedjaoui was one of the organizers of the cinema segment of the first Cultural Pan African Festival (Algiers 1969) and again deputy curator of the second Pan African Festival (Algiers 2009). From 1976 to 1985, he served as Director of the department of film production at Radio Television of Algeria, leading the production of more than 70 feature films. He produced the first feature film directed by an Arab woman, the famous writer Assia Djebar. He also served as Vice–President of the National Broadcasting Council from 1987 to 1991, and as an advisor for communication with the Algerian Prime Minister. He also worked as a consultant for the European Commission, and from 1993 to 2001 as director of REMFOC network organization for the development of the Maghreb journalists. Ahmed Bedjaoui served as advisor of the Algerian Minister of Culture (2001-2012) and was until 2012 the President of the Algerian Film Fund. He is currently a professor of audiovisual communication at the University of Algiers.

Romi Crawford is an associate professor of visual, critical and Africana studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She was previously the curator and director of Education and Public Programs at the Studio Museum in Harlem. Her research revolves primarily around ideas of race and ethnicity and their relation to American visual, aesthetic, and popular culture. She has published in Art Journal; Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women Film and Video Artists (University of Washington, 2008); Black Light/White Noise: Sound and Light in Contemporary Art (Contemporary Art Museum Houston, 2007); Frequency (Studio Museum in Harlem, 2006); Art and Social Justice Education: Culture as Commons (Routledge, 2011); and Service Media (Green Lantern, 2013). She is presently working on a book Congregation Time, which maps out various ways that American racial and ethnic constituents have historically sought safe, racially supportive, social space in order to orient their relation to art, film, and literary production. She received her MA and PhD in English literature, theory, and criticism from the University of Chicago.

Souleymane Bachir Diagne is a professor of philosophy and of francophone studies at Columbia University. His fields of research include History of philosophy, history of algebraic Logic, Islamic and Africana Philosophy. His most recent publications are: African Art as Philosophy: Senghor, Bergson and the Idea of Negritude (London, New York, Calcutta: Seagull Books, 2011); Bergson postcolonial: L'elan vital dans la pen see de Leopold Sedar senghor et de Mohamed Iqbal (Paris, CNRS, 2011); Comment philosopher en Islam, (Paris, Philippe Rey& Jimsaan, 2013); L'encre des savants: Reflexions sur la philosophie en afrique (Paris, Presence africaine, 2013).

Lydie Diakhaté, is an independent film Producer, curator and art critic specializing in the arts and cultures of Africa and its Diaspora, co-founder and co-director of the annual Real Life Documentary Film Festival in Accra (2006 - 2011). She received her diploma from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris (Visual Anthropology Department) and her MA (Museum Studies), from The Graduate School of Arts and Science at New York University. Her recent curatorial projects include: Alien Script, Drawings by Walter Mosley, an outdoor exhibition, a series of 18 large-scale drawings from Walter Mosley’s sketchbooks displayed at the NYU/Kimmel Center Windows; the organization and participation at the international conference Black Portraiture: The Black Body in the West (Paris January 17 – 20, 2013), organized by Harvard University and NYU since 2004; The World of Frédéric Bruly Bouabré at the Kimmel Center NYU, 2012); Stars of Ethiopia, a solo photo exhibition of Chester Higgins also at the Kimmel Center, NYU, 2011; Algiers PANAF: 1969 – 2009, a photo and video exhibition (New York/2010, Washington/2011). She published essays in art journals such as Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art. She is a film producer of films such as Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation (52 min., France/USA, 2010); Conakry kas (82min., Guinée/France/USA, 2004).

Shannen Hill specializes in South African art with research interests in political rhetoric and visual culture, modern and contemporary art, and post-colonial theory. Her forthcoming book, Biko and Black Consciousness in South African Visual Culture (University of Minnesota Press), is scheduled for release in 2015. Her publications include Trauma and Representation: Imaging Violence in Africa, a special issue of African Arts that she co-edited and in which her article “Iconic Autopsy: Postmortem Portraits of Bantu Stephen Biko” appears; and “Minkisi do not die: BaKongo Cosmolopgy in the Christian Rituals of Simon Kimbangu and Simon Mpadi,” a chapter in Undressing Religion: Commitment and Conversion from a Cross-Cultural Perspective (Berg Publishers, 2000). Hill’s research has been supported by the Getty Foundation and the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, among other institutions. She lived and worked in South Africa for three years. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2003, and has taught at the University of Denver, where she also served as its gallery director, Witwatersrand University, and at the University of Maryland, College Park. She currently serves as secretary/treasurer of the Arts Council of the African Studies Association.

Tsitsi Jaji is an assistant professor of English at University of Pennsylvania. Her book Africa in Stereo: Modernism, Music and Pan-African Solidarity (Oxford UP, 2014) examines the impact of African American music on literary, cinematic and digital expressions of transnational black solidarity in Ghana, Senegal and South Africa. Her chapbook, Carnaval, appears in Seven New Generation African Poets (African Poetry Book Fund/Slapering Hollow, 2014).

Zita Nunes is Director of the Center for Literary and Comparative Studies and Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is the author of Cannibal Democracy: Race and Representation in the Literature of the Americas and is currently completing a manuscript on black internationalism and the peace movement in the early twentieth century.

Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi is an artist, art historian, and curator of African art at the Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA. He holds a B.A. in Fine and Applied Arts from the University of Nigeria Nsukka, Nigeria, a postgraduate diploma in Museum and Heritage Studies from the University of Western Cape, South Africa, and a PhD in Art History from Emory University, Atlanta, USA. His recent articles include "The Individual and Community: Aesthetics of Blackness in the works of three Black British Artists," Critical Interventions, No. 12 (Fall 2013), “The Contemporary Present and Modernist Past in Postcolonial African Art,” World Art, Issue 3, No. 2 (autumn/fall 2013)," and "Curating Africa, Curating the Contemporary: The Pan-African Model of Dak’Art Biennial,” SAVVY: Journal of contemporary African Art, [special edition on Curating: Expectations and Challenges] No. 4 (November 2012). He is a contributor to Grove Art Online Summer 2014 update on African Art and Architecture, Oxford University Press, and co-editor of New Spaces for Negotiating Art (and) Histories (forthcoming), a book on independent art initiatives in Africa. Nzewi is the curator of Dak’Art Biennial in 2014 with Elise Atangana and Abdelkader Damani.

Richard J. Powell is the John Spencer Bassett Professor of Art & Art History at Duke University, where he has taught since 1989. Along with teaching courses in American art, the arts of the African Diaspora, and contemporary visual studies, he has written extensively on topics ranging from primitivism to postmodernism, including such titles as Homecoming: The Art and Life of William H. Johnson (1991) and Black Art: A Cultural History (1997 & 2002). His latest book is Cutting a Figure: Fashioning Black Portraiture (2008). Powell, a recognized authority on African American art and culture (and a frequent commentator and lecturer on this topic both in the United States and abroad), has also helped organize numerous art exhibitions, most notably: The Blues Aesthetic: Black Culture and Modernism (1989); Rhapsodies in Black: Art of the Harlem Renaissance (1997); To Conserve A Legacy: American Art at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (1999); Back to Black: Art, Cinema, and the Racial Imaginary (2005); and Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist (2014). From 2007 until 2010, Powell was Editor-in-Chief of The Art Bulletin, the world’s leading English language journal in art history. (B.A., Morehouse College, 1975; M.F.A., Howard University, 1977; M.A., Yale University, 1982; M.Phil., Yale University, 1984; & Ph.D., Yale University, 1988)

Shana L. Redmond, is Assistant Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California and the author of Anthem: Social Movements and the Sound of Solidarity in the African Diaspora (NYU Press, 2014), which examines the sonic politics performed amongst and between organized Afro-diasporic publics in the twentieth century. The book is accompanied by Anthem: The Mixtape—a collaboration between Redmond and The Dreadstar Movement. Her work has appeared in African and Black Diaspora, Journal of Popular Music Studies, Race & Class, and Black Music Research Journal (forthcoming). She has written for The Feminist Wire as well as the month-long 2013 “Sonic Borders Virtual Panel” curated by the International Association for the Study of Popular Music-US and Sounding Out! She is currently working on a project detailing the performative regimes of aid music.

Ahmad Alawad Sikainga, is a Professor of African History, Humanities Department, Qatar University. He is also a professor of History at Ohio State University. Ahmad Sikainga’s area of expertise includes African social and economic history, with a focus on slavery, labor, and urban history. The geographical focus of his research is the Sudan, the Nile Valley, and North Africa. His publications include: Sudan Defense Force: Origin and Role, 1925-1955 (1983), Western Bahr al-Ghazal Under British Rule, 1898-1956 (1991), Slaves into Workers: Emancipation and Labor in Colonial Sudan (1996), City of Steel and Fire: A Social History of Atbara, Sudan's Railway Town, 1906-1984 (2002). In addition to his numerous articles and book chapters, Sikainga co-edited Civil War in the Sudan, 1983-1989 (1993), and Post conflict Reconstruction in Africa (2006). Professor Sikainga was a Mellon Fellow at Harvard University, a Fulbright Scholar in Morocco, and William Luce Fellow at Durham University in U.K. His current research examines the role of slavery, ethnicity, and identity in the development of popular culture in contemporary Sudan. He is also working on a research project that deals with the Islamic legal system and slavery in Morocco in the 19th century. Professor Sikainga teaches courses on the history of Southern Africa, North Africa, Islam in Africa, Social Change in Contemporary Africa, and the African Diaspora. (B.A. and M.A.) from Khartoum University (Sudan); Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara.

Quincy Troupe is the author or co-author of 20 books, including 10 volumes of poems. His most recent book of poems is Errançities, (2012). Among his other notable books are Miles: The Autobiography, with Miles Davis and a memoir, Miles & me. His book The Architecture of Language (poems) won the 2007 Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement and his other book Transcircularities: New and Selected Poems won the 2003 Milt Kessler Poetry Award and was selected by Publisher’s Weekly as one of the ten best books of poetry in 2002. Troupe has won three American Book Awards (1980 for poetry, 1990 for non-fiction and a 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award.) In March 2014, he was awarded the Gwendolyn Brooks Award for Poetry. His work has been translated into more than 25 languages. French publisher Castor Astral will publish a translation of his poems titled Erraniçities in the fall of 2015. Quincy Troupe is professor emeritus at the University of California, San Diego and edits the journal Black Renaissance Noire at New York University. He lives in Harlem, New York.

Penny M. Von Eschen is Professor of History and American Culture at the University of Michigan. She received her Ph.D. from the department of History, Columbia University in 1994. Her awards and fellowships include The Dave Brubeck Institute 2008 Award for Distinguished Achievement and a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, 2007-2008. She is author of Satchmo Blows Up the World: Jazz Ambassadors Play the Cold War, Harvard University Press, 2004, and Race against Empire: Black Americans and Anticolonialism, 1937-1957, Cornell University Press, 1997. She is a co-editor along with Manisha Sinha of Contested Democracy: Freedom, Race, and Power in American History, which includes, Penny M. Von Eschen, “Duke Ellington Plays Baghdad: Rethinking Hard and Soft Power from the Outside In,” Columbia University Press, 2007; and American Studies: An Anthology, Janice Radway, Kevin Gaines, Barry Shank, and Penny Von Eschen editors, Blackwell Press, January 2009. Recent essays include “Race, Civil Rights, and World War II in a Global Frame: Shaping Shifting Race and the U.S. Encounter with European and Japanese Colonialism,” in Stephen Tuck and Kevin Kruse Ed. Fog of War: the Second World War and Civil Rights, Oxford University Press, 2012; and “Made on Stage: Transnational Performance and the Worlds of Katherine Dunham From London to Dakar,” in Desley Deacon and Penny Russell Eds. Biography Across Borders: Transnational Lives, Palgrave Macmillan 2010.She co-curated “Jam Sessions: American’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World,” a photography exhibition on the jazz ambassador tours, with Meridian International Center, Washington D.C., that opened in April 2008, and toured globally as well as in the United States. She has been a frequent guest on National Public Radio discussing cultural diplomacy.

Dagmawi Woubshet is Associate Professor of English at Cornell University. He is author of The Calendar of Loss: Race, Sexuality, and Mourning in the Early Era of AIDS (forthcoming from the Johns Hopkins Press, fall 2014), and co-editor of Ethiopia: Literature, Art, and Culture, a special issue of Callaloo 33.1(2010). His work has also appeared in Transition, Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, Art South Africa, and African Lives: An Anthology of Memoirs and Autobiographies. In 2010, he was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, and his other honors include a faculty fellowship at the Institute of Ethiopia Studies at Addis Ababa University in 2010-11, and the Robert A. & Donna B. Paul Award for Excellence in Advising in 2012. Last fall, he was named one of “The 10 Best Professors at Cornell” by Business Insider. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University and his B.A. from Duke University. An itinerant scholar, he divides his time between Ithaca, New York City, and Addis Ababa.

 

ORGANIZERS:

Margo Natalie Crawford is Associate Professor of African American literature and Global Black Studies in the Department of English at Cornell University. She is the author of Dilution Anxiety and the Black Phallus (Ohio State University Press, 2008) and the coeditor, with Lisa Gail Collins, of New Thoughts on the Black Arts Movement (Rutgers University Press, 2006). Her essays appear in a wide range of books and journals, including American Literature, Want to Start a Revolution?, The Cambridge Companion to American Poetry Since 1945, The Modernist Party, Callaloo, Black Camera, Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, Black Renaissance Noire, and James Baldwin: Go Tell It on the Mountain; Historical and Critical Essays. She is on the editorial board of the Society for Textual Scholarship, the James Baldwin Review, and the Wiley Blackwell Anthology of African American Literature. She is now completing Black Post-Blackness: the 1960s and 70s Roots of 21st Century Black Aesthetics.

Manthia Diawara is the Distinguished University Professor of Film and Comparative Literature; and Director of the Institute of African American Affairs, New York University. Diawara is a native of Mali, has published widely on film, visual arts, and literature of Africa and the African Diaspora. He is the author of several books, including: In Search of Africa (Harvard University Press, 2000); African Cinema: Politics & Culture (Indiana University Press, 1987); and the editor of Black Genius: African American Solutions to African American Problems (1999); Blackface (1999); Black British Cultural Studies: A Reader (1996); and Black American Cinema (1985). His book, We Won't Budge: An African Exile in the World (New York: BasicCivitas Books, 2003), gained wide acclaim as a brilliant meditation on the existential experience of the postcolonial African intellectual. His most recent publication is African Film: New Forms of Aesthetics and Politics (Prestel, 2010). Diawara is also a filmmaker, whose documentary films include Rouch in Reverse, Bamako Sigi Kan, Conakry Kas, and Sembene Ousmane: The Making of African Cinema. More recently Diawara directed Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation (2010); and Maison Tropicale (2008). Diawara received his education in France and later traveled to the United States for his university studies. He received his B.A. (1976) from American University and his M.A. (1978) and Ph.D. (1985) from Indiana University.

Salah M. Hassan is the Goldwin Smith Professor and Director of the Institute for Comparative Modernities (ICM), and Professor of African and African Diaspora Art History and Visual Culture in the Africana Studies and Research Center, and the Department of History of Art and Visual Studies, Cornell University. He is also a curator and art critic. He is editor and founder Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art (Duke University Press), and consulting editor for Atlantica and Journal of Curatorial Studies. He authored, edited and co-edited several books including Ibrahim El Salahi: A Visionary Modernist (Museum For African Art and Tate Modern, 2012, 2013); Diaspora, Memory, Place (Prestel 2008); Unpacking Europe (NAi Publishers, 2001); Authentic/Ex-Centric (2001); Gendered Visions: The Art of Contemporary Africana Women Artists (1997); Art and Islamic Literacy among the Hausa of Northern Nigeria (1992); Darfur and the Crisis of Governance: A Critical Reader (2009), and guest edited a special issue of (SAQ) South Atlantic Quarterly on African Modernism (2010). He has contributed essays to journals, anthologies and exhibition catalogues of contemporary art. He has curated several international exhibitions including at the 49th Venice Biennale in 2001, and the Dakar Biennale in 2004. He is the recipient of several fellowships, such as the J. Paul Getty Postdoctoral Fellowship, as well as major grants from the Ford, Rockefeller, Andy Warhol and Prince Claus Fund foundations.

MODERATORS/DISCUSSANTS:

Samba Gadjigo is a Professor of French at Mount Holyoke College. In addition to his course offerings in the French department, Gadjigo is a member of the African American and African Studies program faculty. His research focuses on French-speaking Africa, particularly the work of the late Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene. Gadjigo's writing has appeared in First of the Month, Research in African Literatures, and Contributions in Black Studies. He is the author of Ousmane Sembene: The Making of a Militant Artist (Indiana University Press, 2009), the first major biography of the African filmmaker. He is currently completing a major documentary film on the life and work of Ousmane Sembene.

Amanda Gilvin is a Five College Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in African Art and Architecture. She specializes in African art, the taxonomy of art and craft, museum studies, gender studies, and textiles. Amanda Gilvin’s research focuses on museology, textiles, and artistic pedagogies in West Africa. Her book manuscript includes an analysis of the Republic of Niger’s unique national museum, the Musée National Boubou Hama du Niger. In 2009 and 2010, she was a Fulbright-Hays Dissertation Research Abroad Fellow in Niger and France. In addition to more conventional forms of academic research, she learned to weave with Abdoulwahid Goumer, a weaver based at the Musée National Boubou Hama du Niger. She also has conducted research in Ghana, Senegal, Switzerland, Canada, and the United States. At Mount Holyoke College and Smith College, Gilvin teaches courses on diverse arts of Africa and the African Diaspora. Themes of her courses include fashion, museology, and contemporary art. Her publications include Collaborative Futures: Critical Reflections on Publicly Active Graduate Education, co-edited with Georgia M. Roberts and Craig Martin (The Graduate School Press of Syracuse University, 2012), and her articles appeared in Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art Number 24, Summer 2009; The Global Perspective of Beads and Beadwork: History, Manufacture, Trade, and Adornment (Kadir Has University, 2007); and a forthcoming special issue of African Arts

Joanna Grabski is the Warner Professor and Chair of Art History/Visual Culture at Denison University. Her research has focused on artists, visual projects, and art institutions in Dakar, Senegal and Brazzaville, Congo. Her essays have appeared in several edited collections and academic journals including Art Journal, African Arts, Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East (CSSAAME), Fashion Theory, Nka, Présence Francophone, and Social Dynamics. She was guest editor of a special issue of Africa Today dedicated to “Visual Experience in Urban Africa” (2007) and co-editor of the book, African Art, Interviews, Narratives: Bodies of Knowledge at Work (Indiana University Press, 2013). She also directed and produced the feature length documentary film, Market Imaginary (2012), dealing with the commercial, historical, spatial, and visual imaginaries around Dakar’s Colobane Market and its surrounding neighborhood. Her current project is a book about artists and urban visuality in Dakar.

Elvira Dyangani Ose is Curator International Art, supported by Guaranty Trust Bank at Tate Modern, London. Prior to joining the Tate Modern, Dyangani Ose worked as curator at the Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville. She served as guest curator for the Triennial SUD-Salon Urbain de Douala in Douala in 2010, and is currently the Artistic Director of the third edition of Rencontres Picha - Biennale de Lubumbashi 2012/2013. As curator, she has developed numerous interdisciplinary projects, focusing on the politics of representation, social and urban imaginaries, and the role of artists in history making. Her recent curatorial projects include major exhibitions such as Carrie Mae Weems: Social Studies (2010) and Nontsikelelo Veleko: Welcome to Paradise (2009), as well as interdisciplinary collective projects such as Attempt to Exhaust an African Place (2007-8), Africalls? (2007), and Olvida quién soy/ Erase me from who I am (2006). She was general curator of the Arte invisible program at ARCO Madrid, in 2009 and 2010. She is currently completing her Ph.D. in History of Art and Visual Studies at Cornell University, New York. She holds a Master’s degree in Theory and History of Architecture and a BA degree in History of Art.

Selene Wendt is an independent curator and founder of The Global Art Project. With a Master in Art History from The University of Chicago, she has extensive experience working with international contemporary art, including six years as Chief Curator at Henie Onstad Art Center and eight years as Director and Chief Curator at The Stenersen Museum, both in Oslo, Norway. She has curated numerous international exhibitions, including Shirin Neshat Beyond Orientalism; Ghada Amer Reading Between the Threads; Liza Lou Leaves of Glass; and Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons Mil Maneras Para Decir Adios, to name a few. She has curated thematic exhibitions such as Art Through the Eye of the Needle; A Doll’s House; Equatorial Rhythms, and Beauty and Pleasure in South African Contemporary Art, co-curated with Khwezi Gule. She has written and edited many exhibition catalogues and books, including Crispin Gurholt Live Photo II (Skira); Fresh Paint (Charta), and When a Painting Moves…Something Must be Rotten! co-edited with Paco Barragán (Charta), and she contributes frequently to art magazines and publications worldwide. Her most recent large-scale exhibition, The Storytellers: Narratives in International Contemporary Art, was curated in collaboration with Gerardo Mosquera. The exhibition features international artists whose work is directly inspired by literature, and is accompanied by a Skira publication. An adaptation of the exhibition will travel to MAC Niterói, Brazil in 2015. She is currently working on Jamaican Roots, a large-scale exhibition featuring contemporary art that relates to the history of Jamaican music.

Kokahvah Zauditu-Selassie is Professor of English at Coppin State University in the Humanities Department. A 2009-2010 Fulbright Scholar at the University of Cocody in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, she is the author of “I Got a Home in Dat Rock: Memory, Orisa, and Yoruba Spiritual Identity in African American Literature” in Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora, as well as several journal articles including, “Women Who Know Things: African Epistemologies, Ecocriticism, and Female Spiritual Authority in the Novels of Toni Morrison,” andEvery Goodbye Ain’t Gone: Using Adinkra Symbols to Frame Critical Agenda in African Diasporic Literature.” She is also the author of a book of critical essays titled, African Spiritual Traditions in the Novels of Toni Morrison, a 2009 publication of the University Press of Florida, which won the Toni Morrison Society’s 2010 award for the best single-authored book examining Toni Morrison’s novels. Her forthcoming publication is a collection of short stories titled, At the End of Daybreak. Her teaching and research interests are varied: African Diasporic Literature and Cinema, African Spiritual Culture, Popular Culture (film and hip-hop culture), Narrative Theory, Performance Theory, and Aesthetic Theory.

Abstracts

Manthia Diawara,
Distinguished University Professor, Department of Comparative Literature and Film,
New York University

KEYNOTE ADDRESS/FILM SCREENING:
Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation
(Color, 52 Minutes, French and English, 2010, K’a Yéléma Productions):

In 2009, Manthia Diawara, with his camera, followed Edouard Glissant on the Queen Mary II in a cross-Atlantic journey from South Hampton (UK) to Brooklyn (New York). This poetic meditation continued in Martinique, the native home of Edouard Glissant. The extraordinary voyages resulted in the production of an intellectual biography in which Glissant elaborates on his theory of Relation and the concept of “Tout-monde.” Edouard Glissant was one of the most important contemporary thinkers. In the 1980s, his theories of creolization, diversity and otherness, as elaborated in the book Le Discours Antillais (1981), were considered as seminal texts for the emerging studies of multiculturalism, identity politics, minority literature and Black Atlanticism. In the 1990s and 2000, he developed a theory he called "Poetique de la relation," and "Tout-Monde," where the concept of "Relation" is perceived as an autonomous entity, moving between objects and providing them with energy, poesis and difference. In his book "Philosophie de la relation", Glissant used the concept to meditate on the new meanings of globalization, chaos, violence, equality and justice. The film will be screened and followed by a major lecture by Manthia Diawara entitled “Présence Africaine and the 1956 First International Congress of Black Writers and Artists,” as the KEYNOTE EVENT of the conference.


Hisham Aidi
Lecturer, Columbia University
“Harlem to the Kasbah: Claude McKay, the Jazz Age and the Gnawa Movement”

When the Harlem Renaissance reached France in the 1920s, it would spark les années folles and the Negritude movement. The Jazz Age would also percolate down to France's colonies in North Africa as artists and novelists like Claude McKay and Jesse Faucet visited Morocco and Algeria.

McKay - and the jazz artists - who would settle in Morocco would be drawn to the traditions of the Gnawa Sufi Brotherhood. From the 1950s onwards, a cultural cross-fertilization between jazz and Gnawa musicians would take place in France and the Maghreb that would alter the musical and political landscape of the Maghreb. This paper will explore the roots of the contemporary Gnawa cultural movement on both sides of the Mediterranean; its attempts to create a neo-pan-African identity among youth in France; and its efforts to challenge dominant nationalist discourses and state-imposed identities in the Maghreb by linking the "Orient" with the trans-Sahara and the trans-Atlantic.


Margo Natalie Crawford
Associate Professor, English Department, Cornell University
“The Diasporic Power of Black Abstraction: “Black” as a Unifying Concept and a Strategic Abstraction”

As opposed to strategic essentialism, 1960s and 70s global black consciousness movements may have been more tied to strategic abstraction. The use of “Black” as a powerful unifying concept that produced an outer space solidarity and alternative kinship created by choice (not birthplace or biology) is often erased when liminality (diasporic in-betweenness) is viewed as being antithetical to the project of Black Studies and when the 1960s and 70s black consciousness movements are viewed only as nationalism and a desire for rootedness and not as a complex rooted wandering. As U.S. African Americans and others were conditioned by the one-drop rule, they did not lose an affinity for liminality, cultural mixture, and veering. I approach the black diaspora as what Fred Moten describes as “a particular embraced affinity of veering.” I open up the overlapping issues of blackness as a unifying concept and blackness as a strategic abstraction by following Samantha Pinto’s theory of diaspora as a space of difficulty. The difficult work of diaspora overdetermines 1960s and 70s issues of the journal The Black World, edited by Hoyt Fuller. I examine the visual art, creative writing, and nonfiction, in The Black World, that set up tensions between blackness as an ideology and blackness as an abstraction that is best understood as a master signifier without a clear signified. Hoyt Fuller’s editing of The Black World is shown to be a complex process of collecting the archive of global black consciousness as it emerges. In this collection process, the notion of a “black world” is an archive that cannot be disconnected from the live, from that which is unfolding as the collection process happens. I argue that the black consciousness-raising of the 1960s and 70s, like this editing of Black World, relied on the creation of connections between fragments and abstractions.


Souleymane Bachir Diagne
Professor, Philosophy and French Department, Columbia University,
“Re-Reading Senghor today.”

In a letter to his American biographer Janet Vaillant, Senghor speaks about his own contradictions that became “clear and symbiotically organized” only “in the age of maturity.” My presentation is an invitation to take seriously that self-assessment and revisit Senghor's oeuvre in order to (1) question the rapid identification of Negritude as an essentialism, and a racialism, (2) examine the importance of art and aesthetics in his political philosophy.


Salah M. Hassan
Goldwin Smith Professor, Department of History of Art and Visual Studies and Africana Studies and Research Center, Cornell University
“Global Blackness Localized: Rethinking the Color Line in Sudan.”

The advent of global unjust systems of labor and distribution such as slavery, colonialism and capitalism has created a hierarchy of races, colors, religions and cultures on a global scale. As Michel-Rolph Trouillot has argued the West is not merely “capitalism” as reflected in “the international division of labor” it has created, but it is also paired with hierarchies where a certain kind of ethnocentrism becomes most dominant. The somatic-norm such hierarchies produced on a global scale follows a color complex in which “the lighter the better” becomes the norm. This paper argues that the ethnocentrisms and complex hierarchies that preceded such unjust global systems in different parts of the world have cast their shadow on the color line in more complex ways than has been acknowledged in contemporary studies of the “color complex.” Hence, the paper intends to examine the manifestation and nuances of such hierarchy of color in the context of Sudan, where other factors such genealogy, line of descend, and somatic-norms matter in understanding the complex and dynamic system and hierarchy of colors that has come to define not only the ideals of beauty and aesthetics but social and political relationship.


Shannen Hill
Art Historian, Ph.D.
“Let's Talk About Consciousness: Black Art in 1970s South Africa.”

As first voiced in 1969 by the South African Students Organization (SASO), Black Consciousness promoted unity, ancestry and action among people commonly subject to colonial horrors, an audience that spanned three continents. SASO and its cousin, the Black Peoples’ Convention (BPC, established 1972), which spread Black Consciousness (BC) beyond university campuses, unified by refusing to segregate by race as opposition parties once did, located ancestry in resistance to colonialism across a tri-continental span, and advocated action or self-determination. These principles formed the basis of what Steve Biko (1948-1977) called “modern black culture” and as such they underscored a truth seldom recognized: black labor created the modern era and black culture enabled modernity, or a conception of being modern. Borrowing from Negritude philosophy, SASO promoted BC’s cultural components, which centered on the pride, beauty, strength and humanity of black cultures. For instance, the phrase “Black is Beautiful” was adopted, as was James Brown’s anthem “Say it Loud: I’m Black and I’m Proud.” Following Soweto 1976 and Biko’s death in detention nearly one year later, BC’s voice became subtler and its proponents pledged themselves to varied methods of opposing apartheid. But it was not “abandoned,” nor “obsolete,” nor did it “evolve” toward non-racialism, as some have surmised. Many individuals have dedicated time to historicizing South African BC in the years since its founding, with the roles of writers, poets, dramatists, educators, philosophers, doctors, theologians, and activists all coming into view. This paper examines the lives and works of artists living along the Johannesburg-Pretoria axis (mostly) in the 1970s and it gives central place to their political positions. Some are highly acclaimed: David Koloane, Ezrom Legae, Thami Mnyele; some are less well known: Fikele Magadlela, Motlabane Mashiangwako, Lefifi Tladi, Dikobe Martins. Each directly adopted BC’s tenants in their professional lives–the unsung work of teaching, curating, creating networks of exchange and markets of sale–and in the finished works they created. All enjoyed the BC inflected writing of Black Review and Staffrider, literary journals founded on BC principles; some were members of SASO and BPC. And, although the archive holds testimony as to BC’s importance in their lives both professional and personal, the record is resisted and its history remains underwritten. This paper offers a reading of Black Consciousness in South African art in the first decade of what is now historically four, plus… and counting.


Tsitsi Jaji

Associate Professor, English Department, University of Pennsylvania
“Of Black Gloss: Reading Bingo Magazine in the Age of Pan-African Festivals”

The large-scale pan-African festivals held in Senegal, Algeria and Nigeria (1966-77) are recognized as central to forging a transnational repertoire of cultural practices and memories that are the bedrock of a post-independence global black consciousness. However, such festivals necessarily privileged artists and cultural workers with the means and/or governmental and U.N. support to travel. My talk excavates contemporaneous perspectives on transnational black affinities in popular African transnational print magazines by examining selected issues of Bingo (based in Paris and Dakar and distributed throughout the Francophone world). Unlike more explicitly literary publications like the earlier Itinérario, Transition, Horn, and even the popular hybrid magazine, Drum, Bingo addressed highly variegated yet explicitly global black audiences. Current political events and short stories, poetry were juxtaposed alongside celebrity stories (often about African American musicians and actors), music reviews, and advertisements for products including radios, aspirin, shoes, and air tickets. Thus Bingo displayed a global black consciousness entangled in aspirational consumption, performances of new national and gender identities and multiple engagements with media. While the festivals garnered some attention in their pages, examining less elite features (photo-comics, women’s pages, music reviews etc.) in selected issues from the late 1960s offers a window on how these festivals fit into the popular imaginary of Africans with less overt pan-Africanist political and cultural goals and fewer possibilities of international travel. Making sense of such local print transnationalism in this key period adds texture to our understandings of global black consciousness.


Zita Nunes
Associate Professor, Department of Comparative Literature,
University of Maryland College Park
“The Third Pan-African Conference and Black Internationalism”

The Third Pan-African Congress, organized by W. E. B. Du Bois, was held in Lisbon in 1923. Unlike the earlier congresses held in the major European cities, this one was deemed a failure by Du Bois and by subsequent commentators. My paper examines the response of the black press in Portugal to the Third Pan-African Congress. Their coverage differed completely from that of the US and, through articles and commentary reprinted from European and African newspapers, staged a conversation among Africans and Afro-descended people that questioned the priorities advanced by the US Americans. I argue that the coverage of the Third Pan-African Congress in the black press of Portugal invites consideration of a significant and understudied archive, the inclusion of a different perspective on Diaspora, and a reassessment of the Congress.


Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi

Curator of African Art, Hood Museum, Dartmouth University
“The Dak’Art Biennial and Global Black Cultural Politics in the 20th Century”

My presentation explores the entangled narrative of global black cultural politics to provide a better understanding of Dak’Art’s more recent pan-African internationalism. The announcement of the creation of the Dak’Art Biennial in 1989 marked a pivotal moment in African and international art scenes. President Abdou Diouf’s government had emerged from the worst part of Senegal’s economic crisis in the 1980s, and was ready to revert to international cultural diplomacy as consequential to national development and economic growth. The mainstream artworld began to rearticulate the meaning of internationalism with groundbreaking exhibitions such as Magicians of the Earth and Another Story. Yet, these events at the twilight of the decade preceding the expansion of the art world and the emergence of new forms of cultural mediation in the 1990s do not fully explain what precipitated Dak’Art. A full picture must include a rigorous engagement with the origins of the cultural politics that inspired and which continue to drive Dak’Art’s geopolitical focus. Throughout the twentieth century, the essence of black cultural politics was the aspiration for institutional, political and cultural visibility. The tenor of the quest has continued to evolve with changing historical and contemporary conditions. Dak’Art responds to the specifics of contemporary cultural politics, but with the benefit of a complex and often difficult black history. Several pan-African conferences and cultural fora organized between 1900 and1959 in different locations in the Western world explored racial uplift, and attempted to forge a united political front against racism and colonialism. These events promoted interaction among black people from different countries and provided an initial context for pan-African internationalism to blossom. This particular pan-Africanist spirit culminated in the black cultural congresses in Europe at the twilight of colonialism, and later manifested in the pan-African cultural festivals in Africa. The early pan-African congresses and festivals, including the International Congress of African Culture in Salisbury (Harare) in 1962, and the First World Festival of Negro Arts in Dakar in 1966, the First Pan-African Festival in Algiers in 1969, and the Second World Festival of Black and African Arts in Lagos in 1977, made a case for black cultural visibility on a global scale. Significantly, they gave international recognition to modern black and African artists, a role currently championed by Dak’Art for contemporary artists of African descent.


Richard J. Powell
the John Spencer Bassett Professor, Department of Art and Art History, Duke University, “Sudanesia”

Amidst the many Western paintings and sculptures inspired by African art and culture in the 1970s (much of it a result of expanded African travels and greater access to traditional arts), two African American artists – painter Lois Mailou Jones (1905-1998) and sculptor Edward Love (1936-1999) – distinguished themselves with two exceptional bodies of work, both aesthetically motivated by the characteristic sculptures and textiles of the continent’s Western Sudanic region. The designs these artists embraced, rather than closely mimicking West African art, turned towards cultural allusions to a distinctive Sahelian sensibility in their forms and chromatics. This mindset, encapsulated in the name Sudanesia (a word Lois Mailou Jones invented at the time), perfectly described Jones’ and Love’s amalgam of a willed forgetting of conventional African representations (as in the medical term amnesia) and a geographical focus on this fabled “land of the blacks” (bilād as-sūdān) where wood, cloth, and soil are transformed into austere materializations of spiritual and philosophical resolve.


Shana L. Redmond
Assistant Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at the
University of Southern California
“Bandung Holograms: The Black Voice as Movement Technology”

In 1955 the Asia-Africa Conference of Non-Aligned States met in Bandung, Indonesia. Participants from primarily Asian and African nations gathered in order to advance a platform of solidarity in response to the repressive conditions of continued colonial dominance and Cold War hysteria. During this global event, more than two-dozen (emergent) nations debated their location in and position on world events and cultures. While known primarily as a political gathering, performance was a pronounced element of the proceedings. In addition to local, indigenous performances, invited guests also added to the mélange of cultures. Paul Robeson, then under domestic U.S. detention due to the revocation of his passport, also made his voice heard at the proceedings. Long a champion of the dispossessed, Robeson sent a speech and recording to the conference on which he sung three songs: the peace ballad “Hymn for Nations,” Negro spiritual “No More Auction Block,” and his labor anthem “Ol’ Man River.” Robeson’s voice in that space developed recognition beyond the body, although the exchange was entirely dependent upon it. The voice is a particular instrument that defines the contours of the body through the pull and push of air, which expands, captures, changes, and then finally releases the sound that allows the listener to not only hear the composition but to hear the body itself. As the voice box and vocal chords vibrate and the chest, lungs, and diaphragm expand and contract, we hear the borders and limits of the body, knowing in time/space that he is with us because we can hear not just his voice but his body—its ends, strengths and weaknesses. Robeson’s performance developed a hologram in Bandung, as this corporeal technology of the voice placed him where he believed that he ought to be: standing and speaking in solidarity with peoples and nations in struggle. My contribution to the conference and anthology will situate Robeson within the immanent spread of decolonization in the mid-twentieth century (in Africa in particular) as a way to investigate and theorize acts of vocal transport as a type of physics (hologram) that places Black bodies in circulation with(in) social movement and strategy collectives beyond their physical reach. With this technology at their disposal, Black artists throughout diaspora and the Third World were capable of expanding their zones of influence and solidarity, thereby initiating and maintaining dense intellectualisms and radical praxes.


Ahmad Alawad Sikainga
Professor, Department of Humanities, Qatar University
“The Representation of Slavery in Literature and Popular Culture in Arabia and the Gulf”

Despite the long history of enslavement in Arabia and the Gulf, the subject has received little attention neither in the scholarly literature nor in the public discourse. This “silence” on slavery in the region has been attributed to numerous reasons such as the sense of shame and guilt slavery evokes and the prevailing social norms. Yet despite its obscurity, slavery in Arabia has been represented in a number of literary works by modern authors from the region. These works have not only broken the “silence,” but have also illuminated the experience of enslavement and its legacy in modern Arabian societies. However, the representation of slavery is not limited to literature, but can also be found in various forms of cultural practices such as songs, music, and dance, and rituals. One of the most important religious rituals in Arabia and the Gulf in which the story of slavery remains alive is the zar and tanbura or spirit possession. These African cultural traditions were used to treat mental and physical illnesses and were introduced and popularized in the Gulf by enslaved African slaves. Their lyrics reveal a great deal about enslavement as well as the trauma, the suffering, and the humiliation that are associated with it. Drawing on a number of novels, this paper will discuss the way in which modern authors have discussed and reflected on a subject that has remained a taboo in Arabian societies. The paper will also analyze some spirit possession songs to show how the experience of enslavement was communicated and passed from one generation to another.


Dagmawi Woubshet
Associate Professor, English Department, Cornell University
“Encounters with Africa: James Baldwin and the Making of Global Black Consciousness”

By the end of the 1970s, James Baldwin's characterization of Africa had changed significantly. Africa was no longer a metaphor for a void waiting to be filled, as it was in his early essays, most notably "Stranger in the Village" (1955), nor a place to be mediated through Europe, as in essays like "Encounter on the Seine" (1950) and "Princes and Powers" (1957). In Baldwin's last novel, Just Above My Head (1979), we find instead an Africa that is (pre)occupied, self-reflective and self-referencing, beyond the purviews of the (white or black) western gaze. After living in Abidjan, Julia, one of the central characters in the novel, declares: "No one has ever discovered Africa. They don't dare." What might it mean to dare discover Africa? What might that enterprise look like for a vanguard of global black consciousness like James Baldwin? And, why does Baldwin wait until the late 1970s to begin imagining Africa from within and not without? While Baldwin had made his first trip to Africa in 1962, visiting Senegal, Guinea, Cote d'Ivoire, and Liberia, he waits almost two decades before recasting Africa from within its own continental vantage point—why? Reflecting on these questions and exploring Baldwin's changing relationship to Africa will help us to illuminate global black consciousness as it took on new forms in the wake of the 1960s.


Penny M. Von Eschen
Professor, History Department, University of Michigan
“The Collision of African American Modernities at the 1966 World Festival of Negro Arts in Dakar”

This paper will focus on the problem of modernity among African American artists at the Dakar festival. Participants included the composer and bandleader Duke Ellington, the choreographer Alvin Ailey, the gospel singer Marion Williams, and the writer Langston Hughes, and William Greaves, an African American filmmaker who produced a documentary on the festival. In addition, the anthropologist, choreographer and dancer Katherine Dunham was deeply involved in the festival as an adviser to President Senghor. In 1958, Duke Ellington wrote that America could not be modern because of racism. Yet by 1963, in the wake of Kennedy’s declaration that Civil Rights was a moral issue that must be addressed by the nation, Ellington seized on the opportunity to take the vibrancy of the Civil Rights movement to the world stage by touring for the U.S. State Department. For the State Department, the presence of such artists as Ellington and Ailey at the Festival represented the triumph of American liberalism. Yet for the artists, the U.S. sponsorship led to many ironies and challenges, including a boycott of the festival and a controversy at the festival over the statements of Katherine Dunham on the relationship between dance and modernity. The differing involvement of black American artists and the controversies that arose at the festival offer a window into a moment of crisis in the evolving relationship between race, modernity and liberalism. I explore these issues by focusing on radio interviews with Alvin Ailey, along with the production of the Greaves film, and Dunham’s role at the festival. Originally commissioned by the USIA to produce a five-minute news clip on the festival, upon arriving in Dakar, Greaves immediately realized the value of a longer piece and he and his cameraman began shooting as much footage as possible. The resulting forty-minute documentary was largely shot without synchronous sound. Greaves edited the sound and footage together by structuring the film around the poetry of Langston Hughes and the music of Duke Ellington, with prominent spots on both artists as well as narrative commentary on the cultural contributions (and especially dance) of numerous new African nations. In the film’s featured spots on African dancers, the influence of the anthropologist and choreographer Katherine Dunham in organizing the festival is evident. Dunham had spent the past three decades studying Afro-diasporic dance bringing these forms to audiences around the world. Dunham herself, however, is a shadowy figure in the film, not identified, but merely shown walking by a group of people and not looking at the camera. I explore Dunham’s absent/presence, striking for an artist known for her arresting presence on a stage, in terms of gender politics as well as the controversy over the “modern” that she provoked at the festival. Greaves’ subsequent problems with attaining distribution rights for his film, (which took nearly three decades) further illustrate the limits of modernity within U.S. liberalism.

Schedule

Sunday | May 11, 2014

 

10:00 • Opening Session 

Manthia Diawara - Welcoming Remarks

Margo Natalie Crawford – Introducing the Conference

Salah Hassan - Introductory Remarks

 

10:30 -13:00 • Blackness, Pan-Africanism, and Internationalism

Moderator: Joanna Grabski

The Third Pan-African Conference and Black Internationalism

Zita Nunes

Of Black Gloss: Reading Bingo Magazine in the Age of Pan-African Festivals

Tsitsi Jaji

Blackness and Pan Africanism: Le Festival Panafricain d’Alger 1969

Ahmed Bedjaoui

Discussants: 

Manthia Diawara and Souleymane Bachir Diagne

 

13:00 • Lunch Break

 

14:00 –14:30

Special Presentation: Melvin Edwards: Journey of a Sculptor and the Poetics of Relations (Melvin Edwards: Parcours d’un sculpteur et poétique de la relation)  

Lydie Diakhaté

14:30 –16:30 • Blackness and Pan-Africanism: Literary and Visual Aesthetics

Moderator: Kokahvah Zauditu-Selassie

Re-Reading Senghor today

Souleymane Bachir Diagne

The Dak’Art Biennial and Global Black Cultural Politics in the 20th Century

Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi

Let's Talk About Consciousness: Black Art in 1970s South Africa.

Shannen Hill

Encounters with Africa: James Baldwin and the Making of Global Black Consciousness

Dagmawi Woubshet 

Discussants: 

Zita Nunes and Tsitsi Jaji

 

16:30 • Reception: Coffee and Tea

 

19:00 • KEYNOTE EVENT/FILM SCREENING:   

Keynote Address: "Présence Africaine and the 1956 First International Congress of Black Writers and Artists"                                                                

Manthia Diawara, Distinguished University Professor, Department of Comparative Literature and Film, New York University.

Film Screening: Manthia Diawara, 

Edouard Glissant: One World in Relation 

(Color, 52 Minutes, French and English, 2010, K’a Yéléma Productions). 

Moderator: Samba Gadjigo                                                                                   

 

 

Monday | May 12, 2014

 

10:00 –12:30 • Global Black Consciousness: Aesthetically Speaking

Moderator: Selene Wendt

The Diasporic Power of Black Abstraction: “Black” as a Unifying Concept and a Strategic Abstraction

Margo Natalie Crawford

Bandung Holograms: The Black Voice as Movement Technology

Shana L. Redmond

Sudanesia

Richard J. Powell

The Collision of African American Modernities at the 1966 World Festival of Negro Arts, Dakar

Penny M. Von Eschen

Discussants: 

Dagmawi Woubshet and Salah M. Hassan

 

12:30 –14:00 • Lunch break

14:00 -14:20

 

Special Presentation: The Photography of Bob Crawford: FESTAC’77

Romi Crawford

 

14:30 -16:30 • Global Blackness Localized

Moderator: Amanda Gilvin

Harlem to the Kasbah: Claude McKay, the Jazz Age and the Gnawa Movement

Hisham Aidi

The Representation of Slavery in Literature and Popular Culture in Arabia and the Gulf

Ahmad Alawad Sikainga

Global Blackness Localized: Rethinking the Color Line in Sudan

Salah M. Hassan

Discussants: 

Margo N. Crawford and Shana L. Redmond

 

17:00 • Poetry Reading/Closing Session:

Quincy Troupe and Kelvyn Bell

 

19:00 • Dinner Reception/Party

 

Sponsors

OFF

ICM

 

IAAA
INSTITUTE OF AFRICAN AMERICAN AFFAIRS 
NEW YORK UNIVERSITY 

Presence Africaine