The Podcast about African History, Culture, and Politics
Peter Mark (Emeritus, Art history, Wesleyan Univ.) on his personal and scholarly journeys through precolonial Mande worlds. He shares insights from decades of experience working with an eclectic range of primary sources and archives. He then discusses the history of a Portuguese Jewish diaspora in Senegal and Afro-European identities. The interview closes with Mark’s preview of his latest research on trade and culture in Casamance and Guinea-Bissau, from the 15th to the 17th centuries.
Marissa Moorman (Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison, African Cultural Studies) on Angolan social history and media studies. We discuss the evolving trajectory of her scholarship, research in southern Africa and Portugal, and her latest book, Powerful Frequencies: Radio, State Power, and the Cold War in Angola, 1931–2002. The interview features a musical interlude (courtesy of Paulo Flores). It closes with insights on Moorman’s public-facing work with Africa Is A Country and provides a sneak peak into her current book project.
Historian Jessica Marie Johnson (Johns Hopkins Univ.) digs into her award-winning new book, Wicked Flesh: Black Women, Intimacy, and Freedom in the Atlantic World. The conversation brings out how Black women in Senegambia, the Caribbean, and Louisiana devised ways to gain control over parts of their lives and defined freedom for themselves in the age of slavery and the slave trade. The interview closes with Dr. Johnson’s thoughts on LifexCode: Digital Humanities Against Enclosure, which she directs, and on the critical role of ethical collaborative scholarship in academic endeavors.
Dr. Gerard Akindes discusses his experience playing and coaching basketball in West Africa and Europe, and the new Basketball Africa League. He considers the role of “electronic colonialism” in the sport media landscape and then reflects on his work advancing African scholarship through research publications and through Sports Africa, a coordinate organization of the U.S. African Studies Association that he co-founded in 2004.
Dr. Chambi Chachage (Princeton) discusses his intellectual journey from Dar es Salaam to Cape Town, Edinburgh, and Cambridge, Mass., his book manuscript on the history of Black entrepreneurs in Dar, and the changing role of digital humanities in the field of African studies. The interview concludes with Chachage’s insights on the controversial recent elections in Tanzania.
Cherif Keita (French and Francophone Studies, Carleton College) reflects on his life as a scholar from Mali and on his documentary films about John Langalibalele Dube and Nokutela Dube, founding figures of the African National Congress of South Africa. The interview closes with a discussion of musician Salif Keita’s journey from social outcast (as an albino) in Mande society to icon of world music.
Excellent variety of topics
I highly recommend this topic for anyone interested in learning more about Africa and the broad field of African Studies.
Extremely interesting podcast. I have been looking for a podcast on Africa and there were not many options. This podcast explores issues that are taking/have taken place and provides great guest speakers with valuable commentary.
A Compelling Look Into the Heart of Africa
There are few parts of the world that have received less exposure in the media than Africa, a continent rich in history, culture, and diversity. Africa Past & Present is a welcome effort to bring stories from the African past and modern world to listeners across the globe. Hosted by Peter Limb and Peter Alegi of Michigan State University, the show features interviews, commentary, and debate from African scholars and Africans themselves on an array of topics relating to the continent's diverse history and peoples, both past and present. For those interested in the history and culture of Africa or the world of international affairs, Africa Past & Present is an essential listen.