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African Studies Lecture Series 2011-2012

October 23, 2011

African Studies Lecture Series

All Lectures Start at 1 pm. Lectures are held in the Mills International Center, in the EMU.

The formal talks will be followed by Q&A and refreshments.  The speakers will meet with interested undergraduates from 2:30-3:00 pm, and be available to meet with faculty and graduate students between 3-5 pm.

Contact or to arrange a meeting with a speaker.

Monday, October 17, 2011—Dr. Juli McGruder, Anthropology and Occupational Therapy, University of Puget Sound

“Interrogating the WHO’s finding of a more benign schizophrenia in poor countries: Lessons from Zanzibar”

Dr. McGruder is an occupational therapist and medical anthropologist who has worked on the island of Zanzibar for over 20 years.  Her work combines practical experience in mental health therapeutic programs with an academic interest in cross-cultural concepts of health and disease. In this talk, she will contextualize the WHO’s finding that individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia have a better chance of recovery in poor countries than rich ones through a discussion of her ethnographic work in Zanzibar.

Thursday, October 27, 2011—Dr. Lioba Moshi, Linguistics/African Languages, University of Georgia

“The Manifestation of Cultural and Gender Roles in Some African Languages”

Dr. Moshi is a leading scholar in the pedagogy of African languages and Director of the African Studies Institute at the University of Georgia.  Educated in Tanzania, England, and the United States, she has worked extensively on the importance of cultural contexts in Kiswahili language instruction and has run numerous study abroad programs for undergraduates interested in learning Kiswahili.  In this talk, she will examine how cultural concepts of social and gender roles are embedded in African languages.

Thursday, November 10, 2011—Dr. Joyce Millen, Anthropology, Willamette University

“Philoblidarity:  New Paradigms for a More Authentic African Independence”

Dr. Millen holds graduate degrees in public health and anthropology and was the Director of the Institute for Health and Social Justice in Boston prior to joining Willamette.  She has conducted ethnomedical and epidemiological research in West Africa, particularly in Senegal where she was a Peace Corps volunteer and lived for over eight years. She is also an editor of Dying for Growth: Global Inequity and the Health of the Poor, and Global AIDS. In this talk, she will discuss her current ethnographic work with skilled Africans living abroad who are bringing health resources to their home countries.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012 — Dr. Steven Rupert, History, Oregon State University

“An Environmental History of Zimbabwe’s Highveld”

Dr. Rubert is an economic historian with a long-standing interest in colonial era Zimbabwe and is the author of The Historical Dictionary of Zimbabwe.  He has studied such topics as tobacco farming and wage labor, and, more recently, a comparison of the cultural, socio-political, and economic contexts of health care for indigenous Africans and white settlers.  In this talk he will explore how colonial policies impacted the environment of the central region of Zimbabwe, as well as events since the late 1990s.

Watch the Video of Dr. Rubert’s Talk

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 — Dr. Jocelyn Mueller, Biology, Tufts University

“Including Local Ecological Knowledge in Global Initiatives in Niger”

Dr. Mueller is an ecologist with an interest in the potential contributions of local knowledge to formulating better models of ecological process.  Working in the W Transborder Park in southwestern Niger, where she was a Peace Corps volunteer, her fieldwork combines  ecological surveys with interviews and participatory research in collaboration with local communities.  In this talk, she will explore the advantages and difficulties of incorporating local ecological knowledge into conservation policy.

Watch the video of Dr. Mueller’s talk now.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012 — Dr. Stephen Dueppen, Anthropology, University of Oregon

“Spiritual Leadership and Dispersed Power in Prehistoric Burkina Faso”

Dr. Dueppen is an archaeologist who is spending two years at the University of Oregon as an ACLS New Faculty Fellow.  He has conducted fieldwork in Senegal, Kenya, and Burkina Faso, where he currently directs the Kirikongo Archaeological Project.  His research at Kirikongo focuses on the development of institutionalized inequalities and their rejection and replacement by an egalitarian political system in the 12th century CE.  In this talk, he will discuss sources of spiritual authority and power in Voltaic societies and their diverse local manifestations.

Watch the Video of Dr. Dueppen’s Talk.

Thursday, April 19, 2012 — Dr. Jennifer Tappan, History, Portland State University

“A Healthy Child Comes from A Healthy Mother: Malnutrition and Motherhood in Buganda, 1950-1974.”

Dr. Tappan is a medical historian who has conducted extensive archival work in Uganda and Great Britain with an emphasis on the local reactions to policy changes and public health campaigns.  In this talk, she will examine popular conceptions and policy regarding nutrition for expecting and new mothers in pre- and post independence Buganda.

Watch the Video of Dr Tappan’s Talk Now

Thursday, May 10, 2012 — Dr. Isidore Lobnibe, Anthropology, Western Oregon University

“The Immigrant Factor in Ghanaian Electoral Politics and The Politics of Belonging in Brong Ahafo.”

Dr. Lobnibe is a socio-cultural anthropologist working in Ghana with interests in peasant economy, political economy, agrarian and environmental systems, labor migration, social organization, popular culture, historiography, and the Black Diaspora.  Educated in Ghana and the United States, his current research focuses on the impact of migration from rural villages to plantations on both home communities and the migrants themselves.  In this paper, he will explore how these migrants are incorporated into the modern state political system.

Organized by Daphne Gallagher & Melissa Graboyes

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