The CAAS Distinguished Lecture will lead into the Saturday, March 28 CAAS day-long symposium Within Our Sites: Legacies and Imperatives of African American Historic Places. The symposium is inspired by the Beman Triangle that is part of our Wesleyan campus and that also stands as one of the nation’s earliest-known African American planned communities. Beman family members were at the forefront of many nineteenth-century religious, educational, social, and political movements and they had strong ties to the communities of color here in Middletown, Colchester, New Haven, Hartford, as well as Boston. We look forward to a day of illuminating presentations and inspiring discussions. We hope to see you in CAAS!
Africanizing Technology Conference — March 5 & 6
This is an exciting conference on campus that will be of special interest to students who are exploring global studies, development, or science, technology, and medicine from a global perspective in their studies. The keynote lecture is by Dr. Julie Livingston (Rutgers University), who is a recent MacArthur Genius Grant winner and author of Improvising Medicine: An African Oncology Ward in an Emerging Cancer Epidemic (Duke UP, 2012). Her talk and the conference panels are open to the public.
Thursday, March 5th
Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life, Room 311
5:00pm Keynote Lecture: Julie Livingston (Rutgers University)
“Pharmaceutical Technologies and the Nature of Efficacy in Botswana”
Friday, March 6th: Conference Panels
Usdan University Center, Room 110
9:00am Panel I: Technologies of Identity and Knowledge Production
Drew Thompson, Bard College–“Disputes over the Past: The biometric passport and studio photography in Mozambique, 1980-Recent Times”
Crystal Biruk, Oberlin College–“Standards and ‘gifts’: Soap as improvisational technology in Malawian survey research worlds”
Summer Wood, New York University–“Technologies of Identity in Tanzania”
Panel Chair: Jennifer Tucker, Wesleyan University
10:45am Panel II: Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Development
Susan P. Wyche, Michigan State–“‘If God Gives Me the Chance I will Design my Own Phone’: Rural Kenyan Repairers and Reimagining Mobile Phone Design”
Sean Jacobs, The New School and “Africa is a Country” Blog–“Shifting African Digital Landscapes”
Gloria Emeagwali, Connecticut State University– “Interconnections between female entrepreneurship and technological innovation in the Nigerian Context”
Solen Feyissa, University of Minnesota–“Contextualizing Educational Uses of Information Communication Technologies inside and outside of Ethiopian Classrooms”
Panel Chair: Mike Nelson, Wesleyan University
1:45pm Panel III: Imagining New Technological Cultures
Laura Ann Twagira, Wesleyan University–Becoming Master’s of Nature: Women’s Transformation of a Colonial Irrigation Project in French West Africa”
Joshua Grace, University of South Carolina–“Tinkering, Techne, and Cars: The Africanization of a Hindi-named European Technology”
Mahriana Rofheart, Georgia Gwinnett College–“Fictional Technologies of Collaboration”
Jennifer Hart, Wayne State University–“Of Mammy Trucks and Men: African Automobility and the Politics of Development in Colonial Ghana”
Panel Chair: Heidi Gengenbach, University of Massachusetts Boston
3:15pm Coffee Break
3:30pm Panel IV: Technological Cultures of Health and Healing
Anne Pollock, Georgia Tech–“Africanizing synthetic chemistry?: Hope in Drug Discovery ‘by and for’ Africa”
Donna Patterson, Wellesley College–“Pharmacy, Biomedicine, and Gender in Senegal”
Tara Dosumu Diener, University of Michigan–“Practice Makes Perfect: Signal, Noise, and Clinical Imagination in the Maternity Ward”
Sarah Hardin, St. Anselm College–“Modern Potions: The Social and Health Repercussions of Pesticides in Senegal and the Francophone World”
Panel Chair: Paul Erickson, Wesleyan University
5:30pm Closing Discussion
For more information please see the conference website: africanizingtechnology.conference.wesleyan.edu
Or, contact the conference organizer Prof. Laura Ann Twagira (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Film Series & Talk: Ofir Touche Gafla, “In Praise of Fiction”–12/4, 8 pm
The last presentation in the fall series Contemporary Israeli Voices 2014 is writer and Schusterman Visiting Professor at the University of Texas, Ofir Touche Gafla, who will deliver a presentation entitled In Praise of Fiction on Thursday, December 4, at 8 pm at Russell House.
Ofir Touche Gafla’s first novel World of the End (2013) has become a cult classic. He has written several other novels including The Day the Music Died and The Book of Disorder, as well as short stories and scripts. He teaches at the Sam Spiegel School of TV and Film. In his presentation, he will talk about the creative process and how fiction serves his purposes as well as read from his novel The World of the End. The event will conclude with a book sale and reception to which all are invited.
Many thanks to those who attended this series, whichhas included many diverse, Israeli voices of renowned as well as emerging and promising voices in the film, literature and the arts. Please mark your calendar for the Eight AnnualRing FamilyWesleyan University Israeli Film Festivalwhich will be inaugurated on Thursday, January 29 at 8 pm at the Goldsmith Family Cinema. The festival will include 6 screenings, one every Thursday evening, of the best Israeli films and TV shows. Admission is free and all are welcome. More details to follow later on.
Best wishes, Dalit Katz
Lecture: “Prisons, Religion, and the Cultural Logic of Mass Incarceration” — Mon., 11/24
On behalf of the Religion Department, I would like to invite you to a public lecture by Dr. Joshua Dubler ’97, Assistant Professor of Religion at the University of Rochester, this coming Monday, Nov. 24, at 4:15 pm, in 001 PAC.
The lecture is entitled: “Prisons, Religion, and the Cultural Logic of Mass Incarceration.”
Here is a brief description of the lecture: Drawing on his recent book, Down in the Chapel: Religious Life in an American Prison (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013), Dubler explores the role played by religious ideas and practices in nurturing the American prison boom. Special attention will be given to prisoners’ religion–how it is practiced, how it is regulated, and how it is popularly imagined.
The lecture is being co-sponsored by the African American Studies Program, the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life, the American Studies Department, the Anthropology Department, the College of Letters, the Government Department, and the University Chaplains.
Ron Cameron, Professor of Religion
Lecture: ” Treasure My Love to the Nation of Muhammad: Jews and Muslims in Modern Iraq” — Tues., Nov. 18 at 8 p.m.
The inaugural Jewish Cultures of the World lecture will take place this evening (Tues., Nov. 18) at 8:00 pm, in Russell House. This event is being sponsored by the Center for Jewish Studies together with the Religion Department, Middle East Studies, the History Department, as well as by two student groups, The Bayit and the Muslim Students’ Association.
The lecture, entitled “‘I Treasure My Love to the Nation of Muhammad’: Jews and Muslims in Modern Iraq, will be delivered by Professor Orit Bashkin.
Orit Bashkin, Professor of Modern Middle Eastern History at the University of Chicago, is a renowned scholar of modern Iraqi history, literature, and culture, and of the unique history of the Iraqi Jewish community. She is the author of The Other Iraq: Pluralism and Culture in Hashemite Iraq (Stanford University Press, 2009), and New Babylonians: A History of Jews in Modern Iraq (Standford University Press, 2012), and numerous articles.
Center for the Humanities Talk–Tonight!
ANDREW MELLON POST DOCTORAL FELLOW, WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY
In what sense are mobile phones, and related devices, mobile? Mobile phones, and mobile computing generally, facilitate particular kinds of mobility—especially elite, cosmopolitan, voluntary forms of movement and circulation—due in no small part to their user interface design. But what counts as movement, culturally speaking? How are mobile devices mobile in relation to the body? When are they characterized instead by locatability, for example, in relation to location-based services? This talk takes up these questions to consider how circles of friends in Berlin interact with the interface design of mobile technologies, especially smartphones, which expect a singular, indivisible subject as the user. Everyday mobile phone practices often challenge implicit norms built in to mobile devices, with implications for sociality, mobility, and experiences of urban space.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2014 | 6 P.M.
DANIEL FAMILY COMMONS | USDAN UNIVERSITY CENTER
Hip Hop Festival — Sat., Sept. 20
Wesleyan University’s Center for the Arts presents
Planet Hip Hop Festival with Maimouna Youssef a.k.a. Mumu Fresh, Meryem Saci, and Poetic Pilgrimage
Curated by Nomadic Wax
What: Afternoon workshops and evening performances by international Muslim women in hip hop, including London’s spoken-word duo Poetic Pilgrimage, the U.S. debut of Montreal-based Algerian singer-songwriter and rapper Meryem Saci as a solo artist, and the New England debut of Washington, D.C.-based and Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter, poet, and emcee Maimouna Youssef a.k.a. Mumu Fresh as a solo artist. Using hip hop as a platform to explore issues of social importance—faith, peace, unity, social justice—educate individuals, and inspire change, the evening concert will also feature the Nomadic Wax Collective, a live backing band that will include bass, drums, keys, guitar, and a DJ. This event is part of Muslim Women’s Voices at Wesleyan.
When: Saturday, September 20, 2014
- Three workshops (between 11am and 5pm): World Music Hall, located at 40 Wyllys Avenue on the Wesleyan University campus in Middletown, Connecticut.
- Concert(9pm): Fayerweather Beckham Hall, located at 55 Wyllys Avenue on the Wesleyan University campus in Middletown, Connecticut.
About: As a teenager, singer-songwriter and rapper Meryem Saci moved with her family from her native war-torn Algeria to Canada. She joined the multi-cultural Montreal hip hop group Nomadic Massive in 2005, opening for Mos Def, Wyclef Jean, Public Enemy, and Busta Rhymes, and appearing with the group at Trinity College’s International Hip Hop Festival in 2010. This performance at Wesleyan will be Ms. Saci’s United States debut as a solo artist. Meryem Saci’s workshop, “Music Is Medicine: Hip Hop Therapy for the Bifurcated Soul,” will take place at 11am. In the workshop, Ms. Saci will explore her experiences as a refugee, an artist, and a Muslim woman. She will unpack the therapeutic and spiritual benefits that music can provide, pulling examples and lessons from her own history and life story.
Singer-songwriter, poet, and emcee Maimouna Youssef a.k.a. Mumu Fresh was featured on the track “Don’t Feel Right” on the album “Game Theory” (2006) by The Roots, which was nominated for a Grammy Award for “Best Rap Album.” She also appeared with the group in Dave Chappelle’s hip hop documentary “Block Party” (2005). Ms. Youssef ‘s first full-length solo album “The Blooming” (2011) was included The Washington Post’s list of best D.C. music of that year, saying “This R&B/soul/hip-hop dynamo delivers a vibrant collection of songs…every track is an impressive showcase of the up-and-coming performer.” Her single “I Got A Man,” produced by DJ Jazzy Jeff, has been featured on VH1 and BET. Ms. Youssef has toured as a supporting vocalist for The Roots as well as Lalah Hathaway, Zap Mama, and Common, and has performed with Angelique Kidjo, Femi Kuti, Nas, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Mos Def, and Talib Kweli, among others. This performance at Wesleyan will be Ms. Youssef’s New England debut as a solo artist. Maimouna Youssef’s workshop, “Freestyling through the History of American Music – Improvisation 101,” will take place at 1:45pm. The workshop will take participants on a vocal journey chronologically through various genres of American music using the pillars of Islam from a female perspective. Participants will learn to use improvisation techniques to share their personal experiences while having loads of musical fun.
Born in Bristol, England to Jamaican migrant parents, Muneera Rashida and Sukina Abdul Noor formed the spoken word duo Poetic Pilgrimage in 2002, and converted to Islam in 2005. Fusing the spiritual mysticism of Alice Coltrane with the sounds of Gil Scott-Heron and A Tribe Called Quest, their music is a portrait of resistance, challenging a hostile environment with unparalleled lyricism and thought-provoking content. Poetic Pilgrimage opened for Talib Kweli’s 2008 tour of Norway. In 2009, the duo were featured at the South by Southwest Festival supporting Mr. Lif, and were the first British group to perform at Trinity College’s International Hip Hop Festival, sharing the bill with Blitz the Ambassador. Poetic Pilgrimage’s workshop, “The Art of Rhyme: Exploring Islam and Hip Hop through Verse Writing,” will take place at 3:30pm. In this workshop, the group will explore the topic of Islam and hip hop using poetry and verse writing, supported by a live DJ. After a short lecture, participants will have an opportunity to write a four-bar verse on a topic relating to the subject of Islam and hip hop. Poetic Pilgrimage will coach participants through the writing and performing process, and participants will have the opportunity to present their verses at the Planet Hip Hop Festival Concert at 9pm.
Nomadic Wax is a U.S.-based social enterprise that produces music, film, and educational events aimed at creating cross-cultural exchange and increasing awareness of global issues. Nomadic Wax links diverse communities and encourages social and cultural dialogues through art. Founded in 2001 as a fair trade record label and production company of African hip hop and urban music, Nomadic Wax has grown into an internationally recognized brand firmly rooted at the intersection of urban media and social change.
- Three workshops (Meryem Saci – 11am; Maimouna Youssef – 1:45pm; Poetic Pilgrimage – 3:30pm): $12 per workshop, or $30 for all three workshops. Workshops are free for Wesleyan students. Lunch provided for participants.
- Concert (9pm): $18 general public; $15 senior citizens, Wesleyan faculty/staff/alumni, non-Wesleyan students; $6 Wesleyan students.
Special Offers: Purchase a Passport to Muslim Women’s Voices at Wesleyan by Saturday, September 20, 2014 and see the evening concert for only $12.50! Click here for more details about this special offer: http://www.wesleyan.edu/cfa/events/passportevents2014-2015.html
Ticketing Information: To purchase tickets online, please visit http://www.wesleyan.edu/boxoffice. Tickets may be purchased at the door beginning one hour prior to the performances, subject to availability. The Center for the Arts accepts cash, checks written to “Wesleyan University,” and all major credit cards. No refunds, cancellations, or exchanges.
For More Information: For more information and to watch preview videos of all the artists, please visit http://www.wesleyan.edu/cfa/mwv.