Candidates for the position of CAAS Vice-President
Professor, Département d'études littéraires, Université du Québec à Montréal.
Contribution to CAAS
I hope, you are in excellent health in this difficult context marked by the coronavirus pandemic.
It was a great challenge and honor to be the UQÀM team leader for the organization of the 2019 CAAS Conference in Montreal. That was a rich experience because it allowed me to work with the former president, Meredith Terretta, but also with the board members of our association. This experience also allowed me to get a good idea of the diversity and dynamism of ongoing research on Africa in Canada. That motivates me to get more involved, in order to make my contribution to the vitality of CAAS. This contribution would include the following, should I be elected to the position of Vice-President:
-Support the President, the board members as well in all the specific tasks related to the position of Vice President but also, support the organizing committee of the next conference.
-Contribute to the formalization and consolidation of good practices in order to facilitate the transfer of tasks and the organization of major events.
-Continue the efforts and projects already undertaken to get more young researchers (graduate, post-doctoral) involved in the Association: Meetings for graduate students in African Studies before or during the annual conference, (virtual) forum for emerging research in African Studies, etc.
-Work for a greater participation of francophone researchers in the life of the association.
-Strengthen links with researchers and institutions working in Africa: invitation of speakers at the conference - Consider organizing the annual conference in Africa - Continue to work on improving the conditions for obtaining visas for researchers from Africa.
-Support the necessary reflection on challenges and consequences of the (post)pandemic context for CAAS activities.
Isaac Bazié hold a Ph.D. (summa cum laude, 1998, Universität Bayreuth, Germany) in Comparative Literature. He taught in Europe, Africa, and Canada since he has been hired into his actual position at UQAM in June 2001. 2015, he gets to the rank of Full Professor with specialization in Francophone African Literatures, World Literature, Africa in the Global discourse as well. From 2009 to 2015, he has been chair of the Department of Literary Studies at UQAM) and supervisor of the BA Program in Education (French). In 2016 Isaac Bazié co-created a research group named LAFI (Laboratoire des Afriques Innovantes, www.lafi.uqam.ca ), which gathers professors and young scholars from diverse disciplines, all related to Africa. In the last twenty years, he received many grants in Canada (CRSH), Quebec (FRQSC), and in Germany (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation).
Isaac Bazié’s current research and publications follows three main axes and can be summarized with the concept of Africa in the global discourse, with a strong cultural and historical perspective: 1. African Literatures and the Canon of World Literature. 2. Reading and Reception Theory: Reading as mediation in the context of Genocide Studies. 3. Representations of Africa (in Literary and Media Discourse). He is about to launch two academic journals (Afroglobe in Montreal, and Dɔnko. Études culturelles et littéraires africaines in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso) with the aim of publishing sound research on World-Africa and African cultures.
During the last years, he succeded in bulding up a strong network of collaborations in North America, Europe, China and Africa as well. He participated and organized himself many international conferences, including 2019 CAAS Conference in Montreal during which he played the role of local committee leader. Isaac Bazié is involved in several academic but also social groups. He founded Havila Canada and the Havila Centre in Burkina Faso (http://havila.ca/qui_nous_sommes/qui_nous_sommes.html) with Blandine Tankoano in 2009 to improve the living conditions of people in need.
Professor of political science and Islamic Studies and Chair of the African Studies Program at McGill University
Contribution to CAAS
I would be greatly honored to serve on the executive of the Canadian Association of African Studies (CAAS). I believe strongly that I would have a great deal to contribute to the Association for a number of reasons. First, I have served as Chair of the African Studies undergraduate program here at McGill University for the last eight years. During my tenure as Chair I have successfully recruited students and scholars of Africa to teach our core African Studies Courses, expanded the membership and activities of the African Studies Students Association (ASSA), overseen the inauguration of the McGill Journal of African Studies, sponsored a wide range of lecture series and panels on African related issues, actively supported (and participated in) the annual McGill-Concordia African Studies Graduate Student Conference, and served as a primary mentor to the McGill Association of African Students (MAAS) as well as the Black Student Network (BSN). Second, during my time at McGill I have not only taught African Politics to thousands of undergraduate students, I have also supervised seven doctoral students and twenty-two master’s students working on a wide range of topics on Africa. Third, in addition to bringing this experience and dedication to my work with CAAS, I have a great deal of experience building networks among scholars of Africa and African diaspora in Canada which I believe will prove to be a strong asset to CAAS. I have lectured at African Studies Centers at a variety of Universities, including the University of Toronto and the University of Ottawa, and I was selected as a keynote speaker at the CAAS conference in the past. More recently, I played a central role in founding the Dr. Kenneth Melville McGill Black Faculty Caucus. The first of its kind, this Caucus aims to forge cooperation between scholars working on Africa and the African Diaspora in Canada, set up mentoring programs for junior African and self-identified Black faculty, and promote the expansion of course offerings on Africa and the African World at McGill. I hope to utilize this rich experience of building scholarly networks across academic institutions in Canada, promoting African Studies at McGill, and supervising and mentoring younger scholars working on Africa across universities in ways that would continue to enhance the intellectual and professional objectives of CAAS. Fourth, I am also a long-time member of the American Political Science Association and the African Studies Association which, I believe, will afford me the capacity to work with CAAS members to increase the international profile of the association. Finally, as a scholar working on the Horn of Africa, I would be honoured to expand CAAS’s work in that region in ways that would complement the scholarship of other CAAS members working in other geographical areas of the continent.
Dr. Khalid Mustafa Medani is currently associate professor of political science and Islamic Studies and Chair of the African Studies Program at McGill University, and he has also taught at Oberlin College and Stanford University. Dr. Medani received a B.A. in Development Studies from Brown University (1987), an M.A. in Development Studies from the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University (1994), and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley (2003). His research focuses on the political economy of Islamic and Ethnic Politics in Egypt, Sudan and Somalia. Dr. Medani has published widely on the on the roots of civil conflict and the funding of the Islamic movement in the Horn of Africa, the question of informal finance and terrorism in Somalia, and the role of informal networks in the rise of Islamic militancy. Dr. Medani has also worked as a researcher at the Brookings Institution and at Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC). He also served as a Homeland Security Fellow at Stanford University in 2006-2007, and he has worked with a variety of international organizations including the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and the UN Office of the Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs. He has also served as a senior consultant for a variety of international organizations such as US AID, IDRC, the UN and the World Bank on issues such as the roots of Islamic militancy, the Darfur crisis, youth politics in Sudan, and electoral reforms in Morocco. He has also served as a consultant on research projects for the governments of the United States, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Norway. Dr. Medani is a previous recipient of a Carnegie Scholar on Islam award from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. He is currently working on a manuscript on the popular uprising and democratic transition in Sudan.
Who can vote?
CAAS Bylaws state that the regular members shall elect the Vice-President, Secretary-Treasurer, and the Members-at-Large of CAAS. Regular membership shall be open to any individual who is committed to the objectives of CAAS and who pays the annual regular membership dues. (Sections 4&15)
If you want to vote but have not yet paid the membership dues, click on this link here, pay and secure your right to vote.
Regular membership gives you the right to the subscription to the Canadian Journal of African Studies (CJAS) published three times a year, including access to e-copies.
Dates of the Vote
The online vote will be held from 22nd to 26th June 2020. Elected vice president will be announced on the 27th, June 2020.