Postcolonial Perspectives in/of Africa

Year Three, Semester Two

Course Code: GY3155

This module views Africa from a postcolonial framework. It aims to bring postcolonialism and development into dialogue to give a critical reading of development through a productive engagement between postcolonial criticisms of how we speak and write about the world, with the material realities of global inequalities, which are the focus of development. This engagement will be explored through a series of case studies which will include: thinking about postcolonial responsibility through the global reparations movement; considering language and representation through exploring metaphors of 'The dark continent' and representing Africa in contemporary times through the media, tourist and development industries; assessing the links between knowledge creation and power, through case studies of indigenous technical knowledge of rice farming in The Gambia, recent 'land grabs' by foreign-owned companies, and the role that ICTs play in rural development in Tanzania; and understanding development discourse and its material effects in making contemporary African spatialities through consideration of the shifting terrain of China in Africa, the biopolitics involved in the extract of minerals for mobile phones in Congo, considering the ordinary lives of waste-pickers in Lagos and the contemporary roles of African Hometown Associations and Development Volunteering in Africa.

The module assessment is: 50% One two-hour unseen examination (two questions from five), 50% One 2,500 word essay.

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