Harvard Africa Workshop
The new Harvard Africa Workshop (HAW) was inaugurated this Fall (2012). This workshop is convened by Jean and John Comaroff, Professors of African and African American Studies and of Anthropology, and Oppenheimer Fellows in African Studies; CAS Faculty Chair-on-Leave Caroline Elkins, Professor of History and Professor of African and African American Studies; and CAS Interim Faculty Chair, Lucie White, Louis A. Horvitz Professor of Law. Each Monday evening, starting at 6pm, a leading scholar of international repute presents a paper addressing one facet of the rapidly changing position of Africa in the global political economy and the impact of that change on global distributions of wealth, well-being, and power.
The Workshop runs, simultaneously, as a graduate seminar, a professional apprenticeship for doctoral Africanists-in-training across the disciplines, and a laboratory for international scholarly exchange. Its intellectual theme for the first three years, 2012-2015, is to be Africa and the World at Large: Or, What the New Global Order Has to Learn from the Contemporary African Experience. Under this theme, three major topic foci will be addressed:
- Changing Economies, Changing Politics, Changing Faces of Capitalism
- State Transformations, Social Order, and the Problem of Crime
- Health and Crises of Reproduction
Two graduate seminars are being held in conjunction with the HAW. Africa Rising? New African Economies/Cultures and Their Global Implications (AAAS 209A), led by Professors John and Jean Comaroff, will explore Africa’s changing place in the world – and the new economies, legalities, socialities, and cultural forms that have arisen there. It will also interrogate the claim that the African present is a foreshadowing of processes beginning to occur elsewhere; that, therefore, it is a productive source of theory about current conditions world-wide.
Professor Lucie White will lead a second seminar in conjunction with the series, entitled Harvard Africa Workshop: Changing Economies, Changing Polities, Changing Faces of Capitalism (2536). The Law School Workshop meets simultaneously with the HAW throughout the academic year, where students precede the paper presentations with discussion on the upcoming topic.