The Rhodes Must Fall and Black Lives Matter movements have issued new challenges to the field of International Development. Calls to decolonise the curriculum, remove public statues, and disrupt received wisdom have swept across the world. What are the implications for International Development of these calls for diversity in development thinking and practice?
The LSE Department of International Development will engage with this question in honour of the renowned development economist, Prof. Thandika Mkandawire. As we enter our first academic year in his absence, this panel takes up the debate in the spirit of Thandika’s commitment to transformative development and the decolonization of knowledge.
New publication of tributes to Professor Mkandawire:
Special Issue: Tributes to Thandika Mkandawire (1940-2020), CODESRIA Bulletin, Nos 2&3, 2020 https://codesria.org/IMG/pdf/tribute_to_thandika_-final.pdf
The event will be convened by International Development's Head of Department, Professor Kathy Hochstetler.
Professor Alcinda Honwana is Strategic Director at the Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa and Centennial Professor at the Department of International Development. She is also a Visiting Professor of Anthropology and International Development at the Open University, where she held a Chair in International Development. Professor Honwana has been an Inter-regional Adviser on social development policy at the United Nations and a Program Director at the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) in New York. She taught anthropology at the New School of Social Research in New York and at the University of Cape Town. Alcinda has carried out extensive research on political conflict and politics of culture, the impact of war on children, youth and women, as well as on youth politics, social movements and political protest. Her most recent books include Youth and Revolution in Tunisia (2013) and The Time of Youth: Work, Social Change and Politics in Africa (2012).
Professor Mahmood Mamdani is appointed in both the Department of Political Science and the Department of Anthropology. His current work takes as its point of departure his 1996 book, Citizen and Subject: Contemporary Africa and the Legacy of Colonialism. He has two major interests. The first is in the reproduction of political identities. Starting with a historical exploration of political identities enforced by the colonial state, his research looks at the reform/reproduction of these through the definition of citizenship in the post-independence period. He frames these questions through empirical work in different African countries: e.g., South Africa, Rwanda, Uganda, Nigeria. His second interest is in the institutional reproduction of knowledge, particularly in what is called "African Studies."
Dr Robtel Neajai Pailey is a scholar-activist whose research centres on how structural transformation is conceived and contested by local, national and transnational actors from ‘crisis’-affected regions of the so-called Global South. She is author of the forthcoming monograph Development, (Dual) Citizenship and Its Discontents in Africa: The Political Economy of Belonging to Liberia (Cambridge University Press, 2021). Her current project, Africa’s ‘Negro’ Republics, examines how slavery, colonialism and neoliberalism in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, respectively, have shaped the adoption and maintenance of constitutional clauses barring non-blacks from obtaining citizenship in Liberia and Sierra Leone.
Dr Kate Meagher is a specialist in the informal economy and formal-informal linkages, with a focus on Africa. She has carried out extensive empirical and theoretical research on cross-border trading systems, regional integration, the urban informal sector, rural non-farm activities, small-enterprise clusters, and the politics of informality, and has engaged in fieldwork in Nigeria, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. She has published numerous articles on various aspects of the informal economy, and is the author of Identity Economics: Social Networks and the Informal Economy in Nigeria (Boydell and Brewer 2010), and most recently co-edited Overcoming Boko Haram: Faith, Society & Islamic Radicalization in Northern Nigeria, with AR Mustapha (James Currey, 2020). Her current research focuses on the gig economy, labour informalization and the new social contract in Africa.
Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEDiversityMatters
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