CfP – ICES 2018 – Transnational entanglements of cultural festivals in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa

 

The 20th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies (ICES20) is scheduled from 1st to 5th October, 2018 and will be held at Mekelle University, Ethiopia. The committee is now accepting abstracts through its dedicated website (see information below)

Transnational entanglements of cultural festivals in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa (panel 0212)

Convened by Alessandro Jedlowski (University of Liege) and Marian Nur Goni (EHESS, Paris)

Over the last decade the complex format, manifold histories and stakes of cultural festivals attracted the interest of scholars to the extent of creating a new, thriving field of inquiries which analyses the ongoing processes of the « festivalization of culture » (Murphy 2016, Dovey 2015, Boum 2012). However, very few studies have focussed on festivals set up in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa. But events of this kind do exist in the region and, being the result of collective efforts, they mobilize a fair amount of people, energies and ideas. Festivals which are not run anymore also survive in the scattered memories and often fragile archives of institutions and individuals involved as organizers, artists, politicians, volunteers or viewers.

To appreciate the wealth of existing experiences, suffice here to think at the Addis Foto Fest (2010) which is today firmly established in the world map of photographic festivals along with, in Africa, the Bamako Biennale (1994) and LagosPhoto (2010) or, back in the 1980s, the Mogadishu film festival Mogpafis which had Pan-African and Pan-Arabic scope and views. Indeed, as political objects in their own rights (Malaquais et al. 2015), festivals offer fascinating opportunities to excavate entangled histories dealing at once with political, economic, social and cultural issues, which have impacts and resonances with local and international debates.

We are interested in proposals highlighting the transnational connections and circulations (in all directions and, particularly, beyond the well-known, top-down, North-South route) of ideas, persons, fundings and « objects » related to specific festivals. Special attention will be granted to festivals in the area of visual arts (cinema, photography, fine arts) which will be analysed through different angles (the nature of the organizing institutions and their purposes, the trajectories of the people involved or of the objects shown, the production aspects, etc.). But proposals on other art forms will be equally considered. Papers may also focus on festivals which had ephemeral lives or which were planned but never came into being; on festivals organized within the diaspora; and on significant experiences of collaboration between artists from the Horn and international festivals.

Deadline: 30 November 2017

Submit through http://www.ices20-mu.org/abstract.html
(Submission through email is not accepted)

Format: simple text only (no pictures or special formatting: bold, italic, underline, small letters etc.)

Abstract length: 100-350 words (briefly describe the issue, methods and finding)

Expected length of presentation at ICES20: around 20 minutes

All the abstracts must be placed under one of the panels. Please refer to http://www.ices20-mu.org/Panels.pdf or http://www.mu.edu.et/ices20/Panels.pdf for the list and description of the panels.

It is also acceptable for one researcher to make multiple presentations at ICES20.


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