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Workshop “Popular Culture in Africa- and Diaspora-related Research”

Invitation to join us for a

WORKSHOP

on

Popular Culture in Africa- and Diaspora-related research:

Politics and Positionalities

 

24 May, 2017

1:00 – 6:00 pm

Location:

Seminarraum 4,

Department of African Studies

University of Vienna Spitalgasse 2-4, Hof 5.1.

1090 Vienna

 

Has scholarly thinking about popular culture in Africa changed in the discipline of African Studies since Karin Barber (“ Popular Arts In Africa,” 1987) published her highly influential article on popular arts in Africa 30 years ago? If so, how might we tie these changes to new social and cultural ways of perceiving and narrating societies in Africa in the last twenty years or so? What, if anything, does the rise of the new media have to do with the way popular culture is produced, disseminated and consumed?

On the basis of some selected texts dealing with the issues raised above and drawing from insights from current research projects by Onookome Okome, who is visiting the Department of African Studies, and members of the research project “Popular Culture in Translocal Spaces” at the same department, this workshop revisits key issues raised in Barber’s essay as entry points into questions such as:

Is the category of popular culture still useful in Africa- and diaspora-related research and in what sense?

How does it relate to other categories such as popular arts or, more recently, social media?

How can the relationship of popular culture and politics be thought through?

How might we think through the politics of popular culture and the representations of politics in the age of the new media?

What are the positions and what are the methods from which we can approach research on popular culture?

 

All are welcome to join the discussion – especially also interested students and younger scholars!

 

Preliminary Schedule:

1:00 – 1:30 pm:                 Introduction of the aims and format of the workshop,  introduction of all participants

1:30 – 3:30 pm:                 Discussion of concepts and approaches on the basis of selected texts

3:30 – 4:00 pm:                 Coffee break

4:00 – 6:00 pm:                 Panel with short inputs and time for discussion, with contributions by

 

  • Onookome Okome (University of Alberta) on „Nollywood“
  • Birgit Englert (University of Vienna) on film translation into Swahili in Tanzania
  • Katharina Fritsch (University of Vienna) on popular culture in the context of ‘Franco-Comorian diaspora’ in Marseille
  • Hanna Stepanik (University of Vienna) on ‘Cape Verdean’ popular cultural practices and ‘diaspora’ in Lisbon

 

Key texts as input for discussion:

Englert, Birgit. 2008. Popular Music and Politics in Africa – Some Introductory Reflections. In: Englert, Birgit (ed.). Popular Music and Politics in Africa. Special Issue of Stichproben. Vienna Journal of African Studies, Nr. 14, 1-15.

Newell, Stephanie; Okome, Onookome. 2014. Introduction. Popular Culture in Africa: The Episteme of the Everyday. In: Newell, Stephanie; Okome, Onookome (eds.) Popular Culture in Africa: The Episteme of the Everyday. New York / London: Routledge, 1-23.

Willems, Wendy; Mano, Winston. 2017. Decolonizing and Provincializing Audience and Internet Studies. Contextual Approaches from African Vantage Points. In: Willems, Wendy; Mano, Winston (eds.). Everyday Media Culture in Africa. Audiences and Users. New York / London: Routledge, 1-26.

Further suggested reading:

Barber, Karin. 1987. Popular Arts in Africa. African Studies Review 30(3): 1-78.

 

Please register until 22 May 2017 by sending an email to birgit.englert@univie.ac.at.

The texts will then be sent to you via email.

 

Organised by Birgit Englert, Katharina Fritsch and Hanna Stepanik of the research project „Popular Culture in Translocal Spaces“

(https://translocalculture.com/)

funded by the Austrian Science Foundation (FWF) together with Prof. Onookome Okome, (University of Alberta).

In cooperation with the Department of African Studies, University of Vienna

(http://afrika.univie.ac.at/)

WORKSHOP “Mobilität erforschen – mobil forschen: Methoden – Positionierungen – Repräsentationen”

Die Forschungsplattform

„Mobile Kulturen und Gesellschaften. Interdisziplinäre Studien zu transnationalen Formationen“

 lädt herzlich ein zum

WORKSHOP „Mobilität erforschen – mobil forschen: Methoden – Positionierungen – Repräsentationen“

 am 5. Mai 2015 von 13-18 Uhr

 im Alois Wagner Saal, C3 – Centrum für Internationale Entwicklung

Sensengasse 3, 1090 Wien

Ziel des Workshops ist der Austausch und die Diskussion über Forschungsmethoden im Themenfeld Mobilität sowie über Fragen der Positionierung als Forschende in mobilen Kontexten. Diese Fragen werden anhand von Inputs aus geistes- und sozialwissenschaftlichen Perspektiven reflektiert. Daher werden insbesondere auch Herausforderungen des transdisziplinären Forschens zu mobilen Subjekten und Objekten im Mittelpunkt der Debatten dieses Workshops stehen, der neben Inputs und Diskussion im Plenum auch Gespräche in Kleingruppen beinhalten wird.

Neben den an der Forschungsplattform (FoPla) beteiligten Forschenden sind alle, die sich für diese Fragen interessieren, insbesondere auch Studierende, herzlich willkommen.

Nach Möglichkeit bitte Anmeldung per Email an mobilecultures@univie.ac.at bis zum 1. Mai 2015. Spontane Teilnahme ist auch möglich, die Voranmeldung würde uns jedoch die Organisation erleichtern.

Organisation: Petra Dannecker, Birgit Englert, Katharina Fritsch

Programm

13:00 – 13:15

Begrüßung, Vorstellung des Ablaufs und der Vortragenden

13:15 – 14:45

Input mit anschließender Diskussion: Nadine Sieveking, Centre for Area Studies und Institute of African Studies an der Universität Leipzig

Nadine Sieveking forscht in den Themenfeldern Performance, Embodiment und Gender im Kontext von Transnationalisierung und Migration. http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~cas/research/senior-researchers/nadine-sieveking/

14:45 – 15:15

Kaffeepause

15:15 – 15:45

Input: Katharina Fritsch und Birgit Englert, Institut für Afrikawissenschaften, Universität Wien

An der Forschungsplattform beteiligtes Teilprojekt: „Populärkultur in translokalen Räumen. Prozesse von Diasporisierung bei Komorianer_innen in Marseille und Kapverdianer_innen in Lissabon“ http://mobilecultures.univie.ac.at/projekte/populaerkultur-in-translokalen-raeumen/

15:45 – 16:15

Input: Marianne Windsperger, Franz M. Eybl, Annegret Pelz, Institut für Germanistik, Universität Wien

An der Forschungsplattform beteiligtes Teilprojekt: „Constituting Global Convivence. Album – Collection Book – Portable Archive“ http://mobilecultures.univie.ac.at/projekte/constituting-global-convivence/

16:15 – 17:00

Diskussion in interdisziplinär zusammengesetzten Kleingruppen

17:00 – 17:15

Erfrischungspause

17:15 – 18:00

Präsentation der Diskussionsergebnisse im Plenum und abschließende Diskussion

“Afrikaforschung in Österreich: Zugänge und Einordnungen”, Innsbruck, March 2015

The conference “Afrikaforschung in Österreich: Zugänge und Einordnungen” took place in Innsbruck, Tyrol, on March 19-20 and was the second meeting of researchers working on Africa at Austrian Universities or other institutions.

Birgit presented parts of the film “Creating Comoria. A documentary on the Franco-Comorian music group AFROPA in Marseilles” and a paper on “Forschen mit der Kamera im postkolonialen Kontext. Afrikanische Diaspora im Fokus” (“Doing research with the camera in postcolonial contexts. Focus on African Diasporas”)

The methodological reflections on researching with the camera are going to be continued within the framework of our project and a symposium is scheduled for autumn 2015 which will deal in depth with the questions relating to research with visual means in postcolonial contexts. More information on this event will follow soon!

Presentation of POCUTRAS at the initial workshop of “Mobile Cultures and Societies”

On November 13, Birgit presented the research project at the initial workshop by the research platform “Mobile Cultures and Societies. Interdisciplinary Studies on transnational formations”.

For more information on the platform and its events, please have a look at:

http://mobilecultures.univie.ac.at/veranstaltungen/

Visit at AFROPEA NOW! in Linz

Andres, Katharina and Birgit visited the International Festival AFROPEA NOW! which took place in Linz from September 25-27. Unfortunately we could only attend the session on Saturday afternoon but recommend anyone to have a look at what was going on in Linz at the website of the organisers, the Stadtwerkstatt Linz at ta.stwst.at

Quote from their website:

“At the core of the festival is a two-day symposium accompanied by film screenigs, concerts, a workshop and an exhibition, at Stadtwerkstatt and on board of MS Schönbrunn.
Local and international artists, experts and activists will discuss aspects of African-European identities and cultural productions from various points of view. With contributions from across Europe and Africa, “Afropea Now!” will focus on the social, cultural, historical and artistic interaction of African and European cultures in a global world regardless of national boundaries.”