Conference Reports Archives - ROAPE
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Conference Reports

The Tunisian student movement played an important part in the country’s liberation struggles and has continued to play a vital role in the decades that followed political independence. However, Moutaa Amin Elwaer argues that the student movement often defends an elitist conception of society, which silences indigenous knowledge accumulated over the centuries, with a perspective not radically different from the national consensus....

At the workshop in Tunis, Malek Lakhal presented a scathing critique of ‘capacity building’ and ‘awareness-raising campaigns’ promoted by Northern NGOs that rely on orientalist tropes of lacuna and deficiency to reinforce how Tunisians – and the Global South generally - are perpetually ‘lagging behind’ or ‘catching up’ and in need of western tutelage and knowledge....

Continuing the series from the Tunis workshop in January, Corinna Mullin looks at the conditions of the Tunisian university from the period of the anti-colonial struggle to the era of neoliberalism. Drawing parallels with universities and activism elsewhere on the continent, she examines how these conditions have shaped resistance within and beyond the university....

Considering the university as the institutional context where the majority of knowledge production continues to take place on the continent, Carlos Cardoso at the Tunis workshop argued that prominent intellectual and scientific production in African states today facilitate the drainage of information and marginalization of other forms of knowledge. Where, he asks, can we look for a new dream, a new critical and creative utopia, to move forward?...

As part of our series on the Tunis workshop, Ndongo Sylla focuses on the CFA franc, one of the most tangible elements of the ‘colonial pact’ in Africa. Under French control the currency continues to circulate in fourteen African countries divided into two monetary zones in West and Central Africa. Despite an announcement in December 2019 of changes to the currency, the most critical aspects of this colonial monetary arrangement remain in place....

On 6-8 January a three-day workshop was held in Tunis, it brought together scholars, activists, organizations and artists who work for the liberation of Asia and Africa. Each day this week roape.net will be posting contributions by participants of the workshop on political economy, knowledge production and solidarity and liberation. In this introduction to the themes of the workshop, the organisers celebrate a gathering of anti-imperialist, anti- and decolonial researchers and activists who shared experiences, knowledge, strategies and tactics with the overall goal of liberation....

In a report on a recent conference in Dakar on the Revolutionary Left in sub-Saharan Africa, Adam Mayer celebrates a gathering of activists and researchers, which could not have been more different from the mega-conferences of academia today. The conference examined the extraordinary vibrancy of left politics and movements across the continent in the 1960s and 1970s....

Njuki Githethwa discusses a recent workshop in Nairobi of activists and researchers on social movements in East and Southern Africa. The workshop set itself the task of asking a number of questions. How do social movements build and sustain resistance? What should the relationship between scholars and activists look like? What role can universities play in building and sustaining connections among social movement scholars and activists? Githethwa argues that the analysis and understanding that came out of the workshop provided rich ammunition for scholars and activists to transform protests across the continent into struggles for radical and lasting transformation.  ...