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Fall 2016

Film Screenings and Q&A with Jihan El-Tahri

Tuesday, October 18, 2016 - 4:30pm to Wednesday, October 19, 2016 - 7:30pm

Multipurpose Room, Africana Studies & Research Center
ICM Film Series

Filmmaker and Author

Nasser (97 mins.)
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
4:30-7:30 p.m.
Film Screening and Q&A Session

Sadat (57 mins.)
Mubarak (58 mins.)
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
4:30-7:30 p.m.
Film Screening and Q&A Session

Souleymane Bachir Diagne, “On African Philosophy”

Monday, August 29, 2016 - 4:45pm

Lewis Auditorium, Goldwin Smith Hall
ICM Lecture Series

Professor, French; Philosophy, Columbia University

The phrase “African philosophy” has been an object of discussion and controversy, particularly in the so-called “francophone” region of the continent, as it poses the question of the possibility of critical thought in a context of orality. The lecture examines that question and insists on the significance of the tradition of written erudition in centers of learning and philosophy such as Timbuktu in the study of the intellectual history of Africa (the focus is on West Africa).

* Suggested reading for this event is The Ink of the Scholars: Reflections on Philosophy in Africa, chapter 1, “The Force of Living,” pp. 9-34. Available on the Codesria website.

Spring 2016

Workshop, "Jacques Derrida: A Figure of African Thought"

Saturday, April 23, 2016 - 9:15am

Hoyt Fuller Room, Africana Studies & Research Center, 310 Triphammer Road

Hala Halim - "Internationalist and Surrealist Inflections in Edwar al-Kharrat’s Resistant Literary Modernity"

Tuesday, March 8, 2016 - 4:45pm

Kaufmann Auditorium, Goldwin Smith Hall
ICM Lecture Series

Associate Professor, Comparative Literature History; Middle Eastern Studies, New York University

Although criticism of Arabic literature has increasingly interrogated the Nahda thesis whereby the Arab world awakens into modernity at the hands of the West and witnesses a literary revival by dint of translation and borrowing genres from Europe, much scope remains to foreground challenges and alternative formulations. This presentation addresses the Egyptian novelist, poet, and critic Edwar al-Kharrat (1926-2015) to extrapolate his articulations of an Arab literary modernity resistant to Eurocentrism. Taking stock of both his literary and critical texts, the presentation treats the critically overlooked import of the internationalist and surrealist aspects of al-Kharrat’s project.

Eric Tagliacozzo - "How the Spice Trade Made the World Modern"

Monday, February 29, 2016 - 4:45pm

122 Rockefeller Hall, Cornell University
ICM Lecture Series

Fall 2015

Saida Hodžić, "Against Sovereign Violence: Feminist Activism and Law in Ghana"

Thursday, December 3, 2015 - 4:45pm

Toboggan Lodge, Cornell University
ICM New Conversations Series

Assistant Professor, Anthropology; Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Cornell University

This talk draws on Saida Hodžić’s forthcoming book, How Cutting Ended: An Ethnography of African Activism. By shedding light on how Ghanaian activists and civil servants both fetishize the law and reckon with its violence, this work invites attention to the ordinary and to practice as sites where feminist critiques of liberalism are both challenged and reinvigorated.

MANTHIA DIAWARA - "Négritude: A Dialogue between Senghor and Wole Soyinka"

Tuesday, November 17, 2015 - 4:45pm

Africana Studies and Research Center, Multipurpose Room

Filmmaker, Africana Studies and Comparative Literature, New York University

4:45 p.m. Film Screening
5:45 p.m. Panel Discussion  

Salah M. Hassan (Moderator)
Africana Studies and Research Center and History of Art, Cornell University

Natalie Melas
Comparative Literature, Cornell University

Olúfémi Táíwò
Africana Studies and Research Center, Cornell University

Edward E. Baptist, “Abolitionism, Modern ‘Anti-Slavery,’ and #BlackLivesMatter”

Tuesday, September 29, 2015 - 4:45pm

Kaufmann Auditorium, Goldwin Smith Hall
ICM Lecture Series

Associate Professor, History, Cornell University

In recent years, concerns about forms of human trafficking in the neoliberal global economy have led to the emergence of a movement that defines itself as “anti-slavery.” While consciously identifying itself with historic abolitionist movements against the nineteenth-century enslavement of Africans in the Atlantic world, modern ‘anti-slavery’ has not drawn the lessons of abolitionists’ failure to reconstruct the racial economy of the Western world.

Spring 2015

Vijay Prashad, “The Futures of Indian Communism”

Thursday, April 16, 2015 - 2:45pm

Kaufmann Auditorium, Goldwin Smith Hall (April 16th)
ICM Lecture Series

George and Martha Kellner Chair in South Asian History; Professor, International Studies, Trinity College

Do the Lok Sabha elections of 2014 signal the end of the road for the Left? Over the past twenty years, the Indian political climate has shifted decidedly to the Right—with the BJP and the Congress dragging India into a growth trajectory that squanders the hopes of working people. The old consensus on Indian socialism is threadbare, and socialist parties are in disarray. The future of Indian communism is rooted in the popular hopes for a better tomorrow and in the popular discontent with the bitter present. The lecture will provide a critical examination of the past of Indian Communism and an assessment of its future.

Margo Natalie Crawford, “This Flesh That We Might Call Diaspora”

Monday, March 23, 2015 - 2:45pm

Toboggan Lodge, Cornell University
ICM New Conversations Series

Associate Professor, English, Cornell University

Fred Moten, echoing Hortense Spillers, describes the flesh created through the middle passage as “this flesh that we might call a body.” Crawford proposes that the “fleshwork” of black diasporic feminism recasts the political as the process of imagining the unimaginable. We often think that black bodies will be fully liberated when the bodies are no longer politicized, but Richard Iton’s theory of the black fantastic pushes past the sense that the state of non-politicized bodies is the goal, as if we are only struggling with erasing the ideology that has been written on black bodies. Iton pushes us to the illegible work of resistance and struggle performed as black subjects reanimate the overwritten black body and denaturalize the notion that political resistance cannot be tied to pleasure and play. This lecture is situated at the crossroads of 21st century African and African American women’s cultural productions. Crawford shows a black diasporic feminist urge to pay tribute to black women’s seizure of their right to animate flesh and to practice a type of proud flesh that is too excessive for normative texts of black feminism.