“Time, Place, and the Problem of Uncertainty in Africa”

“Time, Place, and the Problem of Uncertainty in Africa”

African Studies Workshop spring conference

Wilder House, University of Chicago May 27-28, 2011

Keynote addresses by: Jane Guyer, Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, Johns Hopkins University, Adeline Masquelier, Professor, Department of Anthropology, Tulane University, and Derek Peterson, Associate Professor, Department of History, University of Michigan

Friday

8:30-8:45: Breakfast

8:45-9:00 : Welcome Remarks – conference organizers

9:00-9:30 : Opening Remarks – Jean Comaroff and John Comaroff, University of Chicago

9:30-11:00 : Panel 1 – Uncertainty as Social Threat Anita Hannig, University of Chicago – "Spiritual Border-Crossings: Motherhood from the Margins" Zebulon York Dingley, University of Chicago – “The Eighth Door: Of Bond and Boundary in Kenya’s South Coast” Robert Blunt, University of Michigan – “Witchcraft, Theology, and the Unnameable: The Deinstitutionalization of the Occult in Kenya” Discussant: Jean Comaroff, University of Chicago Chair: Lauren Coyle, University of Chicago

11:00-11:30 : Coffee / Tea

11:30-12:30 : Panel 2 – Knowledge & Uncertainty Hylton White, University of Witwatersrand – “Beyond Materiality: The Uncertain Value of Marriage Payments in Zululand” Betsey Brada, University of Chicago – “False Positives: Epistemological Experiments in Botswana’s AIDS Epidemic” Discussant: François Richard, University of Chicago Chair: Theo Rose, University of Chicago

12:30-2:00 : Lunch

2:00-3:30 : Panel 3 – Reckoning Precarious Economies Bernard Dubbeld, University of Chicago and Stellenbosch University – “Nostalgia and the Problem of 'Changing Times' in Glendale" Lauren Coyle, University of Chicago – “Tender Reckoned in Time: Dispossession and Reconstitution on the Edges of a Gold Mine in Ghana” Jeremy Jones, University of Chicago – “Opportunity in Hyperinflationary Zimbabwe – Mind the Gaps” Discussant: John Comaroff, University of Chicago Chair: Zebulon York Dingley, University of Chicago

3:30-3:45 : Coffee / Tea

3:45-5:00 : Keynote 1 – Jane Guyer, Johns Hopkins University, “Experience in Punctuated Time: Rigid, Rhythmic or Random?”

Saturday

9:30-9:45 : Breakfast

9:45-11:00 : Keynote 2 – Adeline Masquelier, Tulane University – “While We Wait: Boredom, Tea-Drinking, and the Temporalities of Youth in Niger”

11:00-12:30 : Panel 4 – Conflict & Value Michael Ralph, New York University – “The Forensics of Debt” Theo Rose, University of Chicago – “Moments of Uncertainty in the Sierra Leone War” James H. Smith, University of California-Davis – “Tantalus in the Digital Age?: Coltan, Time, and Movement in the Eastern Congo” Discussant: Paul Ocobock, University of Notre Dame Chair: Anita Hannig, University of Chicago

12:30-2:00 : Lunch 2:00-3:30 : Panel 5 – Time & Transition Lisa Simeone, University of Chicago – “Riding the Recession in the Post Postcolony: Development Imaginaries of an Integrating Africa” Kelly Gillespie, University of Witwatersrand – “Hegel and Post-Apartheid Time” Ralph Austen, University of Chicago – “The Great Uncertainties of Africanist Historiography: Is There an ‘African’ Time and Can Its Past Predict Its Future?” Discussant: Emily Osborn, University of Chicago Chair: Bernard Dubbeld, University of Chicago

3:30-3:45 : Coffee / Tea

3:45-5:00 : Keynote 3 – Derek Peterson, University of Michigan – “The Work of Time in Western Uganda” All are welcome, and no registration is required.

This conference is generously sponsored by the Center for International Studies, the Norman Wait Harris Memorial Foundation Fund, the Marion R. and Adolph J. Lichtstern Fund of the Department of Anthropology, the Council on Advanced Studies, the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture, the Committee on African and African American Studies, and the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT) at the University of Chicago.