The University of Wisconsin Press is pleased to announce the launch of a new book series, Women and Gender in Africa, edited by Jacqueline-Bethel Mougoué and Aili Mari Tripp. The series seeks to publish innovative book-length works, based on original research, primarily in the areas of history, politics, and cultural studies.
Jacqueline-Bethel Mougoué, associate professor of African cultural studies and history at UW–Madison, says, “I am thrilled to highlight the works of innovative scholars who bring fresh perspectives on issues of gender and women in Africa. We are especially excited to focus on scholarship that transcends traditional scholarly frameworks by defying disciplinary boundaries and geographical constraints, exploring diverse methods, and spanning the vast expanse of the African continent.”
The series welcomes submissions that address questions and debates of broad theoretical, empirical, and methodological significance of interest to a wide readership, including manuscripts that demonstrate the comparative implications of women’s experiences across and beyond the African continent. The editors are especially interested in such topics as women and religion, sexuality, LGBTQI+ concerns, human rights, migration, health, the family, the environment, law, conflict resolution, race and ethnicity, women’s movements and feminism, and globalization. Projects addressing agency are particularly welcome, including authority, political and spiritual leadership, economic activity, and forms of knowledge and healing. The series welcomes manuscripts that incorporate discussions of literature and popular culture, representation and identity construction, and testimony and life writing.
For Aili Mari Tripp, Vilas Research Professor of Political Science at UW–Madison, the series is an opportunity “to give visibility to the growing body of first-rate research in Africa and beyond that focuses on women’s agency and challenges in a wide variety of social science and humanities fields.”
The series advisory board includes Ousseina Alidou (Rutgers University, USA), Nwando Achebe (Michigan State University, USA), Naminata Diabate (Cornell University, USA), Ainehi Edoro (University of Wisconsin–Madison, USA), Marc Epprecht (Queens University, Canada), Shireen Hassim (Carleton University, Canada), Dorothy Hodgson (Brandeis University, USA), Stanlie James (Arizona State University, USA), Alice Kang (University of Nebraska–Lincoln, USA), Siphokazi Magadla (Rhodes University, South Africa), Fatima Sadiqi (Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah University, Morocco), Laura Ann Twagira (Wesleyan University, USA), and Olajumoke Yacob-Haliso (Brandeis University, USA).
Editor in chief Nathan MacBrien adds, “The University of Wisconsin Press has long had a commitment to publishing scholarship on Africa, and in particular writing on women’s lived experience in Africa. This new series provides inspiration for us, and the disciplines, to both broaden and deepen our commitments by giving space to imaginative work from new generations of scholars in Africa and across the world.”
Manuscripts will be selected based on significance of the topic, quality of scholarship, clarity and style of presentation, list balance, and marketability. For more information about submission, please contact Nathan MacBrien, editor in chief, at firstname.lastname@example.org. For other inquiries, please contact the series editors, Jacqueline-Bethel Mougoué (email@example.com) and Aili Mari Tripp (firstname.lastname@example.org).
About the University of Wisconsin Press
The University of Wisconsin Press is a not-for-profit publisher of books and journals. With more than 1,500 titles and 8,000 peer-reviewed articles in print, its mission embodies the Wisconsin Idea by publishing work of distinction that serves the people of Wisconsin and the world.
Sabine Gross, book review editor of UW Press–published journal Monatshefte, has received a prestigious Hilldale Award for her research, teaching, and service as the Griebsch Bascom Professor of German at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
In a press release announcing the award, Gross is praised for “brilliant interdisciplinary scholarship” in the areas of poetry, theater, literary analysis, and philosophy, as well as her “innovative and inspiring teaching.”
Gross’s contributions to Monatshefte mirror the high level of commitment and excellence celebrated by this award. For two decades she has overseen the journal’s robust book review section, which can include up to twenty-five reviews per issue. For a journal published on a quarterly basis, this represents a tremendous feat.
On receiving this honor, Gross says, “Being part of the UW community and working with great colleagues has been the foundation for all I’ve done here, including my position as Monatshefte book review editor, which connects me with hundreds of colleagues nationally and internationally every year.”
Now on its 113th volume, Monatshefte has appeared continuously since 1899 and has been published at UW–Madison since 1927. For a sample of Gross’s interdisciplinary interests, see the most recent issue, which is focused on the theme of rhythm. Gross coedited this special issue with Hannah Vandegrift Eldridge, and their introduction is freely available to read.
An actor, playwright, novelist, poet, theorist, and radio journalist, Aras Ören (1939–) is one of the earliest and most significant contributors to the emergence of Turkish-German literature. He had his literary breakthrough in 1973, with the publication of the first part of his highly acclaimed Berlin trilogy: Was will Niyazi in der Naunynstraße [What Does Niyazi Want in Naunyn Street]. Ören has been a regular participant in a variety of cultural events and also an important public figure in his role as editor for the first regular Turkish-language radio programming in (West) Germany. This special issue brings Aras Ören’s literary oeuvre as well as cultural-political contributions to the fore, while also highlighting their continued significance. It features well-known scholars from a variety of institutional and national contexts, and not only offers new approaches to Ören’s work, but also includes selected first-time Englishtranslations expanding his readership and therefore providing opportunities for inclusion into the English-language classroom. At the same time this special issue draws attention to the extensive archive, Ören’s Vorlaß at the Akademie der Künste, which not only includes documents relevant to his own work, but also his collection of materials on Turkish-German cultural activities and events in (West) Berlin since the 1970s.
The editors of Monatshefte are pleased to announce a call for proposals for a special issue in 2022. They invite interested guest editors or co-editors to propose a topic with a German Studies focus (broadly conceived) by sending them a list of contributor names, brief abstracts from contributors (300 words maximum), mini-bios of the guest editor(s), and a rationale for the volume of 500–1000 words by January 1, 2020. Typically, Monatshefte issues consist of 5 to 7 articles with 6000–8000 words, but the editors are open to alternative formats provided they remain roughly within that total length.
The editors will evaluate the proposals on the basis of the interest and timeliness of the topic, the coherence of contributions as a single issue, the representation of diverse identities and career stages by the contributors, and the expertise of contributors in the topic.
The inspiration for this special issue on Biography and Economics was the realization that economic history often does not focus on individuals and what their personal testimonies can tell us about economics and economic relationships. The issue brings together five articles that address this theme in different ways; the first through the lens of Philip Quaque on the Gold Coast in the eighteenth century; the second the case of the Ologoudou family on the coast of the Bight of Benin; third through biographical perspectives on enslavement in the upper Guinea coast; fourth, through the memories of indentured women in Natal; and lastly through the autobiographical details found in the wills of freed Africans in Brazil.
Ghana Studies journal is proud to welcome two new editors, Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai and Jeffrey Ahlman. Abdulai and Ahlman take over for outgoing editors Carina Ray and Kofi Baku. The UW Press would like to thank Ray and Baku for all their hard work on behalf of the journal over the course of their three-year term. The following is a brief introduction to the new editors.
Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai holds an MPhil in Development Studies from the University of Cambridge (UK), and a PhD in Development Policy and Management from the University of Manchester, UK. He is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Public Administration at the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS), and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Global Development Institute, University of Manchester. His research centers on the intersection between politics and development, with particular focus on public sector reforms, natural resource governance, spatial inequalities, social policy and social protection, and democratization. He is the co-author of Governing Extractive Industries: Politics, Histories, Ideas (Oxford University Press, 2018). His published work has also appeared in African Affairs, Politics & Policy, New Political Economy, Democratization, Development Policy Review, European Journal of Development Research, Journal of International Development,and Labour, Capital & Society. He won the prestigious Gerti Hesseling Prize (2017), awarded for the best journal article by an African scholar, and was also recipient of a runner-up position for African Affairs’ African Author Prize for best paper published in 2016/2017. In his new role as co-editor of Ghana Studies, he looks forward to deepening the visibility and multidisciplinary outlook of the Journal.
Jeffrey Ahlman is an Associate Professor of History and the Director of the African Studies Program at Smith College, where he specializes in African political, social, and intellectual history. His research reflects on issues of decolonization, political and social sovereignty, citizenship, and the Cold War in mid-twentieth-century Africa. His book, Living with Nkrumahism: Nation, State, and Pan-Africanism in Ghana, was published by Ohio University Press in 2017. He is currently completing two books. The first is a biography of Ghana’s first president, Kwame Nkrumah, which is under contract with Ohio University Press. The second—under contract with I.B. Tauris—is a history of Ghana since approximately the mid-nineteenth century. His other published work has appeared in the Journal of African History, the International Journal of African Historical Studies, Africa Today, Ghana Studies, and Kronos: Southern African Histories. He looks forward to his new role as co-editor of Ghana Studies, where he strives to further promote the journal as the premier site for the interdisciplinary study of Ghana.
Call for Papers
The editors welcome submissions of original research about Ghana for potential publication in Ghana Studies. Submissions from all disciplines will be considered. Manuscripts of interest could explore, but are not limited to, topics such as:
In response to the COVID-19 crisis, volumes 41–56 (2004–present) of Luso-Brazilian Review are now freely available until May 31, 2020, on Project MUSE. In opening content, the journal joins a wider initiative led by Project MUSE to provide free access to many books and journals, in order to support scholars as they transition to remote teaching and learning. You can find a complete list of free resources on MUSE here.
Luso-Brazilian Reviewpublishes interdisciplinary scholarship on Portuguese, Brazilian, and Lusophone African cultures, with special emphasis on scholarly works in literature, history, and the social sciences. Each issue of the Luso-Brazilian Review includes articles and book reviews, which may be written in either English or Portuguese.
of Shells describes
the relationship between West Africa and European colonial powers as it evolved
through the growth of the slave trade. Prior to the fifteenth century, gold-rich
African kingdoms and European economies had been on equal terms, but Green
shows through six case studies how European merchants created an imbalance by
importing large quantities of objects used as currency in African kingdoms,
such as cowrie shells and copper rings, to exchange for gold and slave
laborers. This influx of currency created inflation and lead to economic
instability and social upheaval in West African societies. The book then traces
political developments that led to a revolutionary nineteenth century in
In an interview on the British Academy’s blog, Green emphasizes the importance of fieldwork to his project and for anyone studying the history of West Africa. “The problem with using just written materials . . . is that in the end you will reproduce the perspectives of the authors. In this case, they were white male slave traders and that’s going to give you a very lopsided view – which is what traditionally has happened.” To avoid this pitfall, Green’s research supplemented written narratives with archival research, oral histories, art, archaeology, and letters. The book is the culmination of over twenty years of research.
This Luso-Brazilian Review article was part of my dissertation research for my PhD in ethnomusicology, and it examines the national and international repertoires of the brass movement known as neofanfarrismo (“new brass band-ismo”) that emerged from Rio de Janeiro’s street carnival. I came very haphazardly to write my dissertation on this musical community and its engagements in local activism. Though I had always loved and played Brazilian music and had majored in music and Romance languages, my earliest graduate studies were focused elsewhere. In 2011, Occupy Wall Street exploded, and I found at those protests the Brass Liberation Orchestra (BLO), a brass band in the Bay Area that emerged to play solely for protests during the 2003 Iraq War and is still going strong. Though I was also a music major focused on guitar and piano, I hadn’t been playing trumpet much, but I was quickly swept up into playing in the BLO during those exciting political times. Now trumpet is my main performing instrument!
In 2012, we played at the HONK! Festival of Activist Street Bands in the Boston area, where alternative and activist brass bands play on the streets for free in support of social and political causes. Through that festival network, I learned of a vibrant musical world in Rio de Janeiro where brass ensembles historically connected to the street carnival were experimenting with diverse global repertoires and playing on the front lines of protest. In search of a dissertation topic, I first visited Rio de Janeiro for a preliminary fieldwork trip during the momentous 2013 June protests, which these bands were musically supporting. Still, I couldn’t grasp the full, massive scope of what goes on in the neofanfarrismo community until undertaking fieldwork in Rio de Janeiro between 2014 and 2016 spanning two carnival seasons. This was a fascinating eighteen months between the World Cup and the Olympics and, in retrospect, it was the beginning of the end of the Workers’ Party and the Pink Tide, which had helped set the conditions for the street carnival revival to explode in the early twenty-first century.
What is one part of your research that surprised you, and why?
It would be quite an understatement to say that the neofanfarrismo community “surprised me”—more that it stunned me—but I would say that the biggest thing that stuck with me is the difference between a musical scene and musical movement, the street carnival and neofanfarrismo communities most certainly being the latter. I had no concept of the level of dedication and organization that could be put into community-led mass street music events. The scale of carnival beyond the samba schools, which I also participated in and are also amazing, is bafflingly awe-inspiring. The main group I worked with, Orquestra Voadora, the band that really pushed the neofanfarrismo community beyond traditional repertoires like the marchinha (traditional carnival songs), is a band of about 15 people who organize around 400 people to play for over 100,000 people on carnival day. That’s not even a really big bloco (carnival music ensemble). The more traditional brass bloco Bola Preta brings two million to the streets!
Despite, or because of, this enormity, the neofanfarrismo community is incredibly close-knit and collaborative, with musicians actively working through oficinas (classes or workshops) to teach music to other people. The “-ismo” suffix really underlines the fact that the bands are not just a loosely-connected scene but a social movement. Though the Bay Area also has a vibrant musical scene, I can’t say that there is anything that comes close to neofanfarrismo in the United States; though the international HONK! movement and New Orleans come to mind as related phenomena, they seem quite small in comparison. I certainly believe that this difference between the countries is especially due to the availability of playing in, and yes also drinking in, public space. I have come to see the ways public space is regulated as being a crucial part of the abilities of social movements, especially culturally defined ones, to thrive. Scenes are what evolve in a more splintered cultural worlds like the Bay Area where we are bound to celebrate most often in private clubs.
How did your role as a musician combine with your role as an ethnomusicologist to guide the direction of your research?
As a professional trumpet player, I was immediately “dentro do cordão,” or inside the cords that separate bloco musicians from the crammed audiences that would follow the musicians. It would certainly be possible to study street carnival and neofanfarrismo from alternative perspectives (which some are doing), focusing, for example, on the experiences of the audience or what it is like to be a new musician learning in the movement’s oficinas. But certainly playing trumpet was an asset in accessing “key informants,” getting the insider perspectives, and being a “participant-observer.” That research methodology language really does not capture my experience with the community, however, which could be summed up, with all due respect to more “sober” disciplines, by what I would tell people at the time: if you can’t do academic research while playing music and drinking in the street, is it really worth doing?
As a trumpeter, I was able to play in almost all of the bands and blocos I wrote about. I taught trumpet in the oficinas and participated in their movement of mass musical education. In 2016, I went on tour with the Carioca band Bagunço for five weeks in France. I helped organize the very first HONK! Rio Festival de Fanfarras Ativistas, which Mission Delirium, a band I co-founded, attended in 2015. The HONK! festivals are grass-roots international street/brass band festivals that originated in the US in 2006 and are spreading around the world. There are now five HONK! Festivals in Brazil alone! During preparations for that first festival, I and some co-organizers were robbed at gunpoint in Santa Teresa, and I lost my trumpet, my most crucial “fieldwork tool.” The local community took it upon themselves to organize busking events to help me, an American researcher, with the finances of my loss. I can’t speak for my informants, but I felt known first and foremost as a musician who was firmly part of the movement, rather than a researcher. I wouldn’t want to have done it any other way.
Andrew Snyder’s research explores the political and social impacts of mass public festivity, especially focused on brass and percussion ensembles in diverse locations including Rio de Janeiro, New Orleans, San Francisco, and beyond. He completed a PhD in Ethnomusicology at UC Berkeley in 2018 with a dissertation focused on the carnival brass band community in Rio de Janeiro, the basis for his current book project with Wesleyan University Press. Beyond his article in the Luso-Brazilian Review, his research appears in Journal of Popular Music Studies, Latin American Review, Yearbook for Traditional Music, and Ethnomusicology, and he is co-editor of HONK! A Street Band Renaissance of Music and Activism (Routledge 2020). An avid trumpet player in diverse musical groups, he is co-founder of San Francisco’s Mission Delirium Brass Band, which has toured to Brazil and throughout Europe. Currently a Research Associate at UC Santa Cruz, he has taught at UC Berkeley, University of the Pacific, and UC Davis.
A special issue of African Economic History, “Colonial Economic History in West Africa: The Gold Coast and Gambia in Comparative Perspective,” reconsiders the comparative place of economic frameworks in British colonies in West Africa. One of the issue’s important aims is to emphasize the difference in divergent spaces, between the “profitable” colony of the Gold Coast and the “economic drain” of The Gambia colony. Edited by George M. Bob-Milliar and Toby Green, the issue is also characterized by new and distinctive archival research from archives in the countries considered; this empirical detail places the economic impact of colonialism in an important new light.