Deadline- Tuesday January 22 2019

The 2019 Boston University African Studies Center Graduate Student Conference will explore the theme “in and out
of Africa.” It seeks, on one hand, to contemplate Africa as a place of transit: as an origin, waypoint, or destination
for global-scale flows, circulations, and transmissions. This angle emphasizes the flux and mobility of people, nonhuman organisms, capital, cultures, languages, philosophies and more. But by another light the conference theme also points to boundaries and borders, lines marking what is “in” and what is “out.” It raises again perennial
questions about authenticity, indigeneity, and belonging. Ultimately, considering what is, has been, and will be “in
and out of Africa” raises the question of what ought to be “in and out” of African Studies itself.

The program committee invites graduate students to submit proposals for papers, presentations, or performances
attending to any aspect of the theme “in and out of Africa.” We welcome submissions from any disciplinary,
interdisciplinary, or undisciplined perspective, and particularly encourage the participation of scholars of
underrepresented backgrounds and identities. We further welcome proposals that engage with experimental or
exploratory modes of (re)presentation and practice. Selected papers from the conference will be published in the
Boston University African Studies Center series Working Papers in African Studies

Possibilities for approaching the conference’s theme include, but are not limited to:
• Human mobilities in and out of Africa: flows, (im)migration, diaspora
• Extraction and injection of value and commodities: natural resources, capital, remittances, markets
• Circulation and exchange of epistemologies, ideologies, religions, and spiritualities
• Studies of health, disease, and environment: factors and outcomes in and out of Africa
• Export and import of aesthetic values, artistic practices, and cultural priorities in various media: visual and
plastic arts, music, literature, film, theater
• Food and agriculture: crops, cuisines, and tastes in transit
• Africa “in and out” of global history, modernity, and futures, including perspectives such as Afrocentrism,
Afrofuturism, and Afropessimism
• Heteroglossic practices and Ajamization
• Ideologies and performances of gender and sexuality in and out of tradition and modernity
• Studies of empire, colonialism, decolonization, or neocolonialism as formations that have moved in and out of Africa
• Inter- and outer-nationalisms in Africa
• Ways of simultaneous being in and out of Africa: diasporic consciousness, transnational families, multinational industries


Modest travel grants (of up to 500USD) are available to help defray the cost of conference attendance
for accepted participants who are citizens of an African country. If you are interested in applying for a travel grant,
please submit an itinerary and budget, noting any other additional sources of travel funding available to you, along
with your abstract.

Submission Requirements

Please submit an abstract (no more than 300 words in .pdf or .doc format) to
by Tuesday, January 22, 2019. Note that the abstract should outline a presentation of twenty minutes to be
followed by ten minutes of questions and discussion. Those interested in proposing presentations in alternate
formats are welcome to contact the program committee to discuss their ideas at any time before the submission

Visit conference website for more information here

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