[URBANTH-L]CFP: AFRICA AND THE WORLD: Intercultural Communication, Interpersonal Relations and Governmental Politics

Veronica Usachyova veronius at rambler.ru
Wed Apr 11 12:31:34 EDT 2007

«AFRICA'S DEVELOPMENT: possibilities and constraints»
22-24 May, 2008 Moscow, Russia

If you are interested in participating in the panel below, please 
Veronica Usacheva at veronuis at rambler.ru

AFRICA AND THE WORLD: Intercultural Communication, Interpersonal 
Relations and Governmental Politics

Among the Panel's goals is to reveal the images of Africa and Africans 
in the non-Africans' consciousness on the one hand, and those of the 
non-African countries and peoples in the Africans' consciousness on the 
other, as well as the images' mutual influence. The Panel conveners’ 
basic premise is that the images of other cultures influence crucially 
the attitude to those cultures representatives. In particular, the 
images of Africa and Africans play a fundamental part in the shaping of 
public opinion toward immigrants. Owe to them the stereotype visions of 
people of other races are formed and reproduced, they influence directly 
the practice of the relations with them. The role of mediators and 
regulators in the relations between a country's racial majority and 
immigrant communities is to be played by the civil society and the state 
that pursue policy in the legal, economic, cultural, educational, 
information, and other spheres.
Although papers on any country will be considered non-discriminatively, 
those examining the postsocialist states are especially welcomed. The 
Eastern and Central European countries have not got such a long-lasting 
and contradictory experience of interaction with the Africans as the 
West; the experience that by present had resulted in firm establishment 
of diaspora communities there. However, nowadays the process of the 
African diasporas formation is on there, though this process has not 
been pinpointed and studied sufficiently yet. Nevertheless, it does 
deserve special attention, as there are grounds for expecting the growth 
in the inflow of Africans to the postsocialist countries and eventual 
formation (socio-cultural and institutional) of their communities there. 
In the meantime, the «closed» nature of the socialist societies, the 
difficulties of the transitional period reforms predetermine the 
problems in communication between the Africans and Eastern and Central 
Europeans, the specific features of the situation with the forming 
diasporas in the respective states and of their probable position in the 
accepting societies.
Thus, the basic problems to be discussed in the panel include (but may 
not be limited to):
- The historical backgrounds for the formation of the images of Africa 
and Africans in the world (especially in Eastern and Central Europe) on 
the one hand, and of those of non-African countries and peoples in 
Africa on the other;
- The specific features and historical dynamics of these images in 
different African and world areas;
- The specific features of the African diasporas formation processes, 
the diasporas' socio-cultural integration in the postsocialist states 
compared to those of the West;
- «White» and «black» racism in the context of intercultural 
communication and interpersonal relations in contemporary world;
- The role of the civil society, government, and mass media in the other 
cultures images' shaping;
- The ways of, and possibilities for, providing tolerance in the 
relations between a country's population majority and the immigrants;
- The role the other cultures images and the phenomenon of African 
diasporas has been playing in the different nations' foreign policy from 
the time of decolonization to present.

Paper proposals are due on November 1, 2007, and should be no more than 
300 words in English, accompanied  by the information includes full 
name, title, institutional affiliation, full mail and e-mail addresses, 
and fax #. Full papers (up to 5000 words) expected by March 15, 2008. 
The working languages of the Conference are Russian and English.

Convenors: Prof. Dmitri M. Bondarenko, Dr. Veronica V. Usacheva 
(Department of Cultural Anthropology, Center for Civilizational and 
Regional Studies, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of 
Sciences, 30/1 Spiridonovka st., 123001 Moscow, Russia; Tel.: + 7 495 
291 4119; Fax: + 7 495 202 07 86; E-mails: dbondar at hotmail.com, 
veronius at rambler.ru)

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