Morocco tag

CFP: Berber Societies: New Approaches to Space, Time, and Social Process

Monday, November 7th, 2011

Since the mid-nineteenth century, North Africa’s Berber (Amazigh) populations have constituted quintessential ethnographic subjects for various ends, whether colonial, military, missionary, nationalist, or academic. Central to these endeavors was a sustained effort to document their language, laws, customs, institutions, and lifeways. Berbers (Imazighen) later turned this gaze on themselves as they sought to carve out a place in the national fabric or redefine it altogether. Recent scholarship on Amazigh populations provides important correctives to the nationalist narratives that have long shaped understandings about both the region’s populations and their relations to the nation-state. These scholarly correctives in part have been possible through alternative historiographies that both allow for new interpretations of French archival sources and look more closely at older vernacular sources to investigate claims about Berber ethnicity and solidarity (or lack thereof). Equally important have been new ethnographic field studies by anthropologists, social scientists, historians, and others whose research methods include extended participant observation and critical reengagements with familiar social practices. This conference investigates new ways of situating Berbers in space, time, and social process. Potential participants will be asked to present paper proposals on specific, focused topics grounded in original research and to avoid broad overviews of the Amazigh movement, descriptions of the Amazigh situation, and literature reviews.

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Confluence of Cultures or Convergence of Diasporas: An International Symposium. Marrakech, Morocco 20-22 May 2011

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

The symposium proposes to examine the interconnections and convergence of cultures under conditions of slavery. While slavery tended to impose the culture of the master society on enslaved people of foreign or alien origin, whenever the enslaved population was of sufficient size, we are more accurate in considering the clash of cultures, as when Muslims were enslaved in Christian lands, or people of Yoruba culture were enslaved in Brazil or Cuba. In these situations, we can talk of enslaved populations being in diaspora, with sufficient cultural memory to link with a homeland. We want to examine slavery through a paradigm that explores the convergence of diasporas. The symposium assembles specialists of slavery under different historical regimes, whether in the Mediterranean, the Atlantic world, or the Indian Ocean.

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Review of Ghislaine Lydon’s “On Trans-Saharan Trails” by Amanda Rogers

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

Ghislaine Lydon’s “On Trans-Saharan Trails” not only fills a gap in knowledge of premodern Saharan economic history, but also bridges the cultural and historical terrains of the region in a manner relevant to a variety of disciplines. Chapter 1 introduces the central argument, presents the methodological premises, and deconstructs predominant myths plaguing the study of Saharan history. Lydon posits that Arabic literacy and Muslim religious institutional frameworks enabled the success of trans-Saharan trade despite the lack of shared currency and unified state systems, allowing for the cultivation of trust-based relationships between Muslims and Jews in a “paper economy of faith” that facilitated commercial transfers across wide distances (p. 3). The text focuses on nineteenth-century Wad Nun, a regional network of traders whose caravans circulated throughout the areas of northern and western Africa, today encompassing Mauritania, Senegal, Mali, and Morocco.

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CFP: US militarization of the Sahara-Sahel: Security, Space and Imperialism (4 Jan 2010)

Thursday, December 10th, 2009

The Concerned Africa Scholars Bulletin is currently compiling papers, interventions and reviews for a special issue on the post-9/11 US securitization of the Sahara-Sahel region of West Africa. We are seeking contributions that will elucidate and dissect the various logics and effects of the increased US military presence in the countries of Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Algeria and Morocco. Contributions other countries in the region — e.g., Nigeria, Chad, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Tunisia, Libya — will also be warmly welcome.

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