A Formidable First Year for our Department of Black Political Thought and Culture

African History Project - Black Girl Studying (4) copy

Celebrating a year of providing a range of innovation programmes to its students, the African History Project has shown a deep passion for teaching the intellectual history of the continent and its diaspora.

This passion and dedication was shown in the creation of the Department of  Black Political Thought and Culture whose sole aim is to help students explore thematic Black historical narratives.

Public Lecture Series

To begin with, our public lectures have shown our desire to deliver high quality public education. One of our best attended events was our Introduction to African Religion lecture. We took participants through the pillars of African religion, exploring its philosophies, theologies and cosmologies to understand how Africans understand and relate to the divine and the spiritual. This event so far has recorded the most registrations of all events organised by the African History Project.

Another particularly interesting lecture was the one that explored the life and work of Dr Edward Blyden. In this lecture we charted his vehement advocacy for African development, and dissected the evolution of his ideas from a veneration of all things western to a genuine reverence for what he called the “African Personality”.

Frantz Fanon’s Blueprint for African Culture was also one lecture that grabbed the attention of many as we explored the life and work of eminent Martinican psychiatrist and political thinker, Frantz Fanon. Fanon was a key ideological leader of the Algerian resistance during the war of independence from France and he challenged Africans to attain the necessary consciousness to construct the new sense of self he felt was essential to their success in the post-colonial world.

Such public lectures have provided an amazing opportunity to engage with our growing community of knowledge seekers. These events have afforded many an introduction to great minds and the inspiring vision they had for their people.

Past Lecture | An Introduction to African Religions

Past Lecture | Frantz Fanon and his Blueprint for African Culture[s]

Past Lecture | How Edward Blyden Found His African Personality

Short Courses and Foundation Certificate

We are also continuously curating and launching courses that give students the chance to engage with African intellectual history more profoundly.

Our short course ‘An Introduction to African Religions’ and our Foundation Certificate in Black Political Thought and Culture have received a lot of interest in a short space of time and we anticipate even more interest moving forward

Partnerships

In addition to our work with students, we have formed deep and sustainable relationships with a number of leading Black cultural institutions. We have collaborated with The Africa Centre on a number of projects with the most recent being a discussion moderated by our director, Apeike Umolu, held at the The Africa Centre in London on the topic of  ‘Contemporary Pan-African Education’. From this we have produced a number of articles and launched projects on the subject of Pan-Africanism.

We are also very committed to thought leadership in the space of African political and intellectual history as well as in relation to African philosophies of education and history. Thus, we are spearheading a White Paper on the topic “Pan-African Citizenship Education: families, communities and educators” due for publication later in the year.

Thus, the Department of  Black Political Thought and Culture is committed to sharing Black historical narratives with as many people as possible while leading the way in challenging Black communities to think critically about the way they teach their histories and challenging all communities to think critically about the way we teach our children.

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