His30
African students in European universities from c.1800 to present: uncovering lost histories, decolonising the academy

Convenors:
Henry Mitchell (University of Edinburgh)
Chair:
Simukai Chigudu (University of Oxford)
Discussant:
Tom Cunningham (University of Edinburgh)
Stream:
History
Location:
David Hume, LG.06
Sessions:
Wednesday 12 June, 8:45-10:15

Short abstract:

This panel invites panellists to engage with the long and significant history of African students at European universities. Motivated by the recognised need to decolonise the academy, the panel aims to uncover and critically reflect upon histories that remain largely unacknowledged or unknown.

Long abstract:

This panel invites papers that engage with the long and significant history of African students at European universities. Motivated by the recognised need to decolonise the academy, and taking inspiration from numerous recent and on-going collaborative public history projects, the panel aims to uncover and critically reflect upon histories that have in the main remained unacknowledged or unknown. Papers might take various forms. We welcome submissions relating to political and intellectual histories of student associations and papers that examine the role played by universities as venues for the emergence of pan-Africanist, anti-colonial, and nationalist thought. Alternatively (or simultaneously) panellists may chose to focus on in social, cultural and gender histories of how African students navigated student life in Europe. We welcome papers that examine such topics as: scholarship schemes, racist discrimination, colonial development, student accommodation, social life and personal relationships. We are interested in these topics in relation to the present, but also in the past and as far back as the nineteenth and even eighteenth centuries. In relation to the conference theme, we encourage papers to think of universities in relation to their place within imperial, colonial and post-colonial power-relations and how, as such, they are sites of both connection and disruption. We encourage biographically-oriented papers, as well as more thematic, structural approaches examining, for instance, the patterns of migration for education and the global and imperial networks that shaped these movements - especially with regard to the social and political importance of this history to contemporary issues.