~ WE ARE AWARE THAT THE CONFERENCE DATES AND/OR MEETING CIRCUMSTANCES MAY BE ALTERED BECAUSE OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. CONVENIENT ALTERNATIVES WILL BE PROPOSED IF NECESSARY ~
From Monday March 1st to Friday March 5th, 2021, the Université libre de Bruxelles and the Royal Museum for Central Africa will welcome international scholars from disciplines as diverse as linguistics, anthropology, archaeology, genetics, palaeobotany and others, to discuss methods and the latest results regarding the precolonial past of Africa. Contributions must address the precolonial history of Africa, but may be both theoretical or presenting research results, mono- and multidisciplinary. We especially encourage contributions reflecting on the central theme of the conference: “Extracting the Past from the Present”. Many of us analyze data that have been collected recently – words and phrases, observations of contemporary pottery techniques, genes, etc. – in order to formulate hypotheses on the past. Hardliners argue that only direct evidence – such as ancients objects – may inform us on the past and that such inferences are mere speculation. Yet, many of the insights we value today are based on contemporary evidence. Given its controversial nature, we also welcome critical approaches. More details on the conference’s incentives and central theme can be found here.
We foresee five days of conference as to avoid parallel sessions and instead foster the exchange between scholars working at opposite sides of the continent, on different epochs and diverging research interests, but all facing the same multidisciplinary challenge.
Call for papers
Please send an abstract of no more than one page, including all authors and references, to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than June 30th, 2020. All accepted papers should result in a 20-minute oral presentation at the conference.
You may submit abstracts individually. However, if you would like a panel on a particular topic, related to or other than the central theme of the conference, you may invite colleagues for a session of 4 to 6 presentations. In this case, we ask the organizer of the panel to send us the individual abstracts together with a brief introduction to the panel (again no more than one page) in one e-mail, not separately. Abstracts of the same panel will be reviewed together.
We encourage participation from scholars based in Africa. and we invite these colleagues to mention in their reply if they wish financial support for travelling.
- Abstracts due: June 30th, 2020.
- Notification of acceptance: September 30th, 2020.
Proceedings of the conference will be published in a special volume of the international bilingual open-access journal Afriques: Débats, méthodes et terrains d’histoire.
The program will be announced early 2021.
We plan several social activities, amongst which an excursion to the renewed Royal Museum for Central Africa and a conference dinner. More details will be announced in Fall 2020.
The registration fee includes conference materials, lunch and coffee breaks:
125 € for postdocs and academic staff
75 € for students
No fees are charged for colleagues based at African institutions.
Conference dates: March 1-5, 2021
Conference venue: Université libre de Bruxelles, Solbosch Campus, Institute of Sociology, Avenue Jeanne 44, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
Directions are indicated on the ULB website: https://www.ulb.be/en/solbosch/directions#acces .
Your stay in Brussels
In Fall 2020, you will find suggestions for accommodation, travel and tourism here.
Birgit Ricquier, ULB
Daou Véronique Joiris, ULB
David Kopa wa Kopa, ULB – UNIKIS
Shingo Takamura, ULB
Els Cornelissen, RMCA
Alexandre Livingstone Smith, RMCA
Laurent Nieblas Ramirez, RBINS
Chiara Batini, University of Leicester
Koen Bostoen, Ghent University
Kathryn de Luna, Georgetown University
Pierre de Maret, ULB
Jeffrey Fleisher, Rice University
Olivier Gosselain, ULB
Alexa Höhn, Goethe University
Susan Keech McIntosh, Rice University
Alice Mezop Temgoua, University of Yaoundé 1
Karim Sadr, University of the Witwatersrand