From the 16th to the 20th of July 2023 the international humanities conference, partly sponsored by IFRA-Nigeria, took place at the faculty of Arts of Obafemi Awolowo University on the following theme: "new theories of Africa: diversities, divergences and dreams". The conference featured Professor Karin Barber from the university of Birmingham, Professor Carole Boyce Davies from Cornell University and Professor Tunde Bewaji from the University of West Indies.
The Higher Education, Research and Innovation Department (ESRI) of the French Embassy is funding mobility grants (SSHN* grants) for researchers, doctoral students and post-doctoral students in Nigeria. The research stay must take place in a French laboratory, as part of an existing collaboration, for a period of one to three months during 2023. The stay in France must end no later than 31 December 2023 and must take place in one go.
On Thursday 6th of July 2023, IFRA-Nigeria invited Prof Olutayo C. Adesina to present his current research and upcoming publication on the Ibadan School of History. He gave a lecture on the making and meaning of the Ibadan School of History since the 1950s. He described the emergence of the school, the epistemological and historiographic achievements of its proponents as well as the intellectual mode and forms of civil engagement they proposed. He also discussed the lessons to be drawn for the experience of the Ibadan School of History on researching and writing Nigerian and African history in today’s world, especially around the development of African epistemologies and transforming African universities. The recording of the event is available here.
A revised version of “AFROBEAT! FELA AND THE IMAGINED CONTINENT” by Sola Olorunyomi was published on the 22nd of June 2023 by Africae and is freely accessible online following this link. Africae publishes academic works in the humanities and social sciences on Africa that shed light on political, economic and social dynamics in the past and in the present. Africae promotes the open access dissemination of knowledge and encourages publication in the languages of the territories concerned by the research. In this way, Africae aim to contribute to the circulation, without commercial barriers, of the products of contemporary scientific research in all regions of Africa.
The sixth issue of Sources just came out and is accessible here.
What do photographers and their pictures show about Africa? This special issue aims to analyses the social representations produced and disseminated by photographers, whether professionals or amateurs, researchers or not, African or not. The articles present numerous photographs, reflecting the longstanding nature of this practice as well as its contemporary vitality. The authors consider what is shown, what can be shown, but also the images that are not there or are no longer there. Examining the absence of images invites us to grasp the entire photographic process, from shooting to distribution. The aim is to unravel not only the photographs themselves, but also the various interactions that led to their production, reproduction or disappearance. In this way, the articles sketch out the area of the photographable in Africa.
On the 23rd of June, Rémi Jenvrin gave a methodological Seminar at the Institute of African Studies of the University of Ibadan. Rémi Jenvrin’s work aims at shedding light on the knowledge and practices that characterise the relationship between urban societies and tree vegetation in two West African cities, Osogbo and Porto Novo. These relationships are highly diverse, ranging from affective, memorial and ritual, to tourism, recreation, aesthetics, and ornamentation, to medicine and ecology. The interrelationships between this knowledge and practice about trees and urban forests also reflect a diversity of scales and players.
IFRA-Nigeria and the Tursday Film Series teamed-up again for an event on the 22nd to discuss the idea that, in the age of the sustainable city, urban development actors emphasise the importance of nature in cities although their perspective (subsitence, ecology and aesthetics) often overlooks or even oppose the local representations, knowledges and relationships with urban plants, trees and forests. Could the long-standing presence of urban nature in African cities be considered as a heritage that belongs to city dwellers who are concerned about preserving and transmitting it on their own and specific terms?
The 7th Annual Lagos Studies Association Conference took place between June 20 and June 24, 2023. IFRA-Nigeria is a sponsor of this important event. On the 20th of June Barbara Morovich, director of IFRA-Nigeria, and Cyrielle Maingraud-Martinaud, researcher and deputy Director of IFRA-Nigeria animated an event titled “Interrogating the Dynamics of Knowledge Production in North / South Research Contexts”. This event constituted an opportunity to discuss the consequences of knowledge production in transnational collaborations set-up.
On the 16th of June 2023, Tim Livsey (Northumbria University) organised a workshop for early career researchers in partnership with IFRA-Nigeria with the support of the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council. The workshop took place at the Institute for African Studies of the University of Ibadan. Tim Livsey offered an introduction to the history of the ‘migrated’ colonial archives, focusing particularly on the files removed from Nigeria. Prof. Abiola Abioye, an archives studies expert at the University of Ibadan, gave a keynote address positioning the ‘migrated’ archives in relation to the history of archives in Nigeria. His talk also explored possible ways forward in dealing with ‘migrated’ archives issues.
Building from research conducted within IFRA-Nigeria elections observatory, the institute hosted a day of roundtables and a keynote lecture by Professor Eghosa Osaghae on June 14th aimed at assessing what happened during this election cycle and what it means for the political and social dynamics of the country.
On Friday 2nd of June 2023 at the Alliance française of Lagos, the French Embassy in Nigeria launched a cycle of 3 conferences with a conference bringing together eminent Nigerian and French experts, exchanging ideas and opinion on a crucial subject for inclusive development and taking a step towards a better understanding of the Nigerian realities.
Between the 22nd and the 27th of May 2023, a series of workshops gathered under the title “The return of things: Objects, archives and creation in time of restitution” took place in Yaoundé, Cameroun. IFRA-Nigeria, with numerous partners, participated in these events that took place in the following locations: Musée National - Goethe Institut Kamerun –CIPCA – Institut Français du Cameroun – Bandjoun Station. Follow this link for more information (French & English versions available): https://retours.hypotheses.org/
On the 17th of May, Michael Eniola Oshindoro, Ph.D. student at the Department of African Cultural Studies of the university of Wisconsin-Madison presented his research methods and outputs. His doctoral work aims to document the historical development and context of animation production, distribution, and reception in Nigeria. Michael performs archival research and adopt ethnographic methods in his study of animation. His ethnographic work takes him to animation studios in Lagos and Abuja where he does participant observation, conduct one-on-one and group interviews, collect brochures and materials, and document the pipeline production process in the studios. In addition to looking at digital archives, He works in the National Archives inside the University of Ibadan.
On Wednesday 3rd and Thursday 4th of May, IFRA-Nigeria organised an introductory training in photogrammetry and 3D modelling as part of its research project on the religious architectural heritage of Ibadan. The training was provided by Lloyd Martin, an architect and independent researcher, at the Institute for African Studies of the University of Ibadan. Lloyd Martin has conducted extensive research on the philosophy and work of Nigeria architect and artist Demas Nwoko and he is preparing a 3D model on the Dominican Chapel (Ibadan) that will be part of the interactive map released by IFRA late 2023 or early 2024.
On the 19th of April 2023, Adejoke R. Adetoro, PhD student in History at the University of Ibadan, presented her methods and her fieldwork to fourteen master and PhD students during a methodological seminar at the university of Ibadan. Adejoke R. Adetoro presented her works that delve into how religious practices shape students’ experience of campus life. Her work contributes to the debate on religious revivalism focusing on the campus of the University of Ibadan, the oldest university of Nigeria. Exploring this topic from 1948, the date of creation of the university as a college of the university of London, to the present day, Adejoke mobilizes a transdisciplinary methodology to capture the multiple aspects of the topic she studies. She presented how she used historical sociology to mobilize sociological concepts such as social organisations and social curriculums within religion. In addition, she works in a team with and anthropologist and a sociologist.
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