The Centre's activities are diverse and many. The majority of its members are lecturers of the University of London, contributing to the teaching of undergraduate and Masters degrees and the supervision of Doctoral research within the humanities, social sciences and sciences. One of the most important functions of the Centre is to act as a forum for regional and interdisciplinary co-operation within the University of London which is predominantly organised through membership of disciplinary departments. Other activities of the Centre include representation on international and national committees for African scholarship, research and understanding; establishing and supporting funded schemes for Visiting Scholars from Africa; linking academe, government, and business through meetings, workshops and conferences promoting Africanist research and understanding, and through meetings of the Africa Business Group; raising the profile of its members for interdisciplinary research and consultancy, and much more.
In pursuit of its aims, the Centre maintains a broad range of institutional liaisons with other Africanist centres in Africa, the United Kingdom, Europe, the Commonwealth and the United States. It publishes its own briefing newsletter, African News, with a distribution of over 800 copies, three times a year. The Centre also keeps members informed of news, events and meetings on Africa throughout the year through the e-mail group mailing system run from the Centre office.
- Book Launch: Gamo-English-Amharic Dictionary
Richard J. Hayward & Eshetu Chabo
This is a major work in the study of Omotic languages, being an extensive dictionary and substantial introductory grammar to Gamo (spoken in south west Ethiopia). The dictionary is the result of 25 years of work by the authors Richard J. Hayward (Former Head of Department of Languages and Cultures of Africa at SOAS) and Eshetu Chabo (a lawyer and a mother-tongue speaker of Gamo).
- Dammed Progress: hydropower, modernization and the politics of development in Southern Africa
A discussion about the social history of one of the most ambitious infrastructural projects in the history of colonial Africa: the Cahora Bassa dam in Mozambique, which still provides electricity for mining and industrial sectors in the region. The talk contrasts the conflicts over the long-term benefits and impacts of development projects.
- Oil and Rural Infrastructure Development: Discourses, Methodologies, and Outcomes of Intervention in Oil Communities of Nigeria
Dr Babajide Ololajulo
Leventis Fellow and anthropologist Dr Babajide Ololajulo will present from his research on the experience of state organised oil-led development intervention among the Ilaje, a coastal Yoruba speaking group in Ondo state, Nigeria.
- Ebola Beyond the Headlines: Discussion & Fundraiser
Douglas Farngalo; Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr; Deborah Johnston; David Mabey
International hysteria about isolated incidences of Ebola in the US and Europe have dramatically diverted attention away from containing the disease at its source. Come hear about why this outbreak of Ebola has eclipsed all other outbreaks of its kind and what diaspora actors are doing to contain the disease in their respective countries of origin.
- ABG Seminar: Cutting Edge Community Based Tourism in East Africa
Dr Mulugeta Feseha (Addis Ababa University) & Professor Tom Selwyn (SOAS)
This event explores new routes and opportunities for tourism in Ethiopia. Rich cultural, historical and physical landscapes suggest limitless tourism potential for Ethiopia and this meeting will reiterate existing offerings and suggest new strategy for tourism development throughout the country and the region.
- Basil Davidson's AFRICA: A Voyage of Discovery, Episode 8: The Legacy
Mick Csáky & Gus Casely-Hayford
Part of Film Africa 2014, this screening celebrates 30th anniversary of this ground-breaking television series which first appeared in the UK on Channel 4 television in April 1984 and went on to play worldwide. Episode 8 looks at Africa in the aftermath of colonial rule. Interviews with political leaders illuminate Africa's problems and successes.
- Structure, Function and Text of Ìrègún music in Yagbaland, Kogi State, Nigeria
Dr Titus Olusegun Stephen
Leventis Fellow and lecturer in the Department of Music (Obafemi Awolowo University) Dr Titus Olusegun Stephen will present his research on Ìrègún music in Yagbaland, Kogi State, Nigeria.
- The Memory of the Crowd: Exploring the Potential of Digital Media Platforms to Re-imagine a National Narrative in Kenya
Sam Hopkins (Slum TV)
Sam Hopkins is a site-specific and media artist with acclaimed critical, public projects in Nairobi, Kenya. In this presentation and discussion with Annie Coombes, he shares his current research project 'The Memory of the Crowd', looking at the role of collective memory in representing national history.
- The African Roots of the New World Banjo
Daniel Laemouahuma Jatta
The Jola scholar and musician Daniel Laemouahuma Jatta presents findings from three decades of research on the relationship between the akonting and the banjo of the American south.