Spring term 2017
  • Fri 10 Feb 2017, 10:15–11:30

    Uppsala University’s Engagement with Africa

    Friday 10th February 2017

    Room 3-2028, Engelska Parken

    What does Uppsala University’s engagement with Africa look like

    Presenter: Molly Sundberg, Researcher at the Dept. of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology

    During the autumn of 2016, Forum for Africa Studies embarked on a mapping exercise of all significant academic activities involving Africa at Uppsala University. Sources of data include interviews with a selection of researchers; a university-wide, online questionnaire; a review of doctoral dissertations published during 2000-2016; and department websites and documents. The results from that mapping will be presented at this Fredagsforsk, and will be followed by an open discussion of conclusions and recommendations regarding Africa-oriented work at the university.


  • Fri 17 Feb 2017, 10:15–11:30

    Mental ill-health and psychological treatments in a Ghananian context

    Mental ill-health and psychological treatments in a Ghananian context



    Joakim Norberg, Department of Psychology, Uppsala University

    Jan Carlsson, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work, Örebro Universitet


    Location: 3-3028 Engelska Parken


    This presentation will outline a planned research collaboration between Ghana and Sweden to provide public mental health care in the West-African region with culturally sensitive knowledge about depression. Most available research on depression and psychological treatments for depression was carried out in Europe and North America. However, this research does not easily carry over to Ghana due to cultural differences that include lifestyle, views, beliefs, values, and attitudes. The planned research collaboration aims at exploring the expression of depression and lay theories on the etiology and cure of depression in Ghana by using qualitative methods. The presenters are hoping for feedback on how to develop this project.


  • Thu 23 Feb 2017, 16:00–18:00

    Multiple Marginalities, Enslaving Culture!

    Multiple Marginalities, Enslaving Culture!

    Maasai Women Navigating Culture, Tradition and Patriarchy in their Quest for Political Leadership in Kenya

    Presenter: Dr. Damaris S. Parsitau

    Location: Ihresalen, Engelska Parken

    Dr. Parsitau is Senior Lecturer in Religion, Gender and Public Life, and Director at the Institute of Women Gender and Development Studies, Egerton University in Kenya, and Visiting Research Fellow at the University of South Africa. She also serves as Vice President and the East and Central African Representative for the African Association for the Study of Religions. 

    Location: Ihre salen, Campus Engelska Parken

  • Fri 17 Mar 2017, 10:15–11:30

    The Making of Authority in Plural Legal Systems

    The Making of Authority in Plural Legal Systems

    The case of the community courts in the city of Maputo, Mozambique

    Presentation by Fabio Provenzano (University of Copenhagen, Centre of African Studies)

    Location: Engelska Parken 3-2028


    Since the early 1990s, Mozambique has been experimenting with a transition from a socialist to a capitalist system, a process common in many other African countries. This has involved various political reforms affecting, among other spheres, its juridical system. Such changes galvanised the emergence of local institutions settling disputes in both rural and urban areas. Among the most popular of these institutions in the capital is the 'community court', which are used for solving cases that state institutions do not have the capacity to address, like witchcraft accusations and spiritual curses. As such, these courts stand for forms of ordering that are parallel to the Mozambican state and they are especially present in economically deprived neighbourhoods unsatisfied with the many governments represented by the political party FRELIMO. Although these courts have been thriving, FRELIMO’s influence on these areas is unshakable. 


    This presentation analyses the ways in which multiple authorities in the plural legal system of urban Mozambique are constructed and legitimized, using community courts as a study case. These courts are approached in the presentation as hybrid legal spaces mirroring the Mozambican plural system, which is understood as a composition of different forms of knowledges and authorities. The presentation is drawn from fieldwork conducted in Maputo, Mozambique, from August 2015 to April 2016, including interviews and six months of participant observation inside two community courts

  • Tue 28 Mar 2017, 17:00–18:00

    Migration and Mobility in the Age of Trump

    Speakers: Jesper Bjarnesen (Nordic Africa Institute), Véronique Simon (Dept of Education)

    Location: Smålands Nation, S:t Larsgatan 5, Uppsala

    The past few years have seen a rise in populist movements in several Western nations.  Perhaps the most notable manifestation of this trend has been the election of Donald Trump to the office of the President of the United States. The rhetoric used by Trump and his European counterparts, as well as their proposed policies, seem to be explicitly aimed at preventing immigration and fostering fear and hate. We live in a world that is more ethnically, culturally, and religiously diverse than it has ever been in the past, and yet many of the most powerful public figures in Western society are claiming this diversity is not just undesirable, but dangerous. This Pub Dicusssion, jointly hosted by Forum for Africa Studies and Studentföreningen Etnograferna, will provide a space in which we can discuss these issues in a more casual atmosphere than is often the case within the academy. Sandwiches will be provided to those who RSVP to:

  • Thu 30 Mar 2017, 15:15–17:00

    China in Africa - for whose benefit?

    China in Africa - for whose benefit?

    Interests and impacts explored

    Presenter: Henning Melber (Nordic Africa Insitute)

    Location: House 2, Room 1024, Engelska Parken, Thunbergsv. 3H

    Since the turn of the century, China’s increased economic and political partnerships with governments in Sub-Saharan Africa has provoked at times sensational speculations as regards its forms and consequences. Meanwhile, the initial hype over the markedly expansionist course by the anything but new kid on the bloc has been largely replaced by more nuanced and informed analyses. This presentation summarizes some aspects of the Chinese engagement and seeks to put it into a wider perspective of the continent’s interaction with external agencies and interests, while also reflecting on the role of local partners in these relations. The general assessment is followed by a case study assessing the various aspects of the Chinese-Namibian ‘all weather friendship’.

  • Fri 31 Mar 2017, 14:00–16:00

    Jeux et enjeux: Parenté à plaisanterie et culture politique burkinabè

    Jeux et enjeux:

    Parenté à plaisanterie et culture politique burkinabè (en français)

    Alain Sissao (Institut des sciences des sociétés)

    Sten Hagberg (Dept of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology, Uppsala University)

    Location: Engelska Parken, 3-2028

    En mobilisant l'institution culturelle diversement appelée « parenté à plaisanterie », « alliance à plaisanterie » ou encore « alliance cathartique », cette table-ronde portera sur comment une telle institution a pu survivre, voire même être revitalisée, au Burkina Faso. Prof. Alain Joseph Sissao parlera sur les alliances et parentés à plaisanteries, notamment entre les ethnies et les membres de la famille, les théâtralisations sociales, ainsi que des manifestations culturelles comme la semaine nationale de la culture. Prof. Sten Hagberg engagera une réflexion sur la place de la plaisanterie et de la satire dans les transformations sociopolitiques burkinabè. 


  • Thu 11 May 2017 – Fri 12 May 2017

    Multiple Healths: Pasts, presents and futures of bio-medicine and wellbeing in/with Africa

    Multiple Healths:

    Pasts, presents and futures of bio-medicine and wellbeing in/with Africa 


    • Abena Osseo-Asare, Dept of History, University of Texas at Austin, USA
    • Bilinda Straight, Dept of Anthropology and Dept of Gender and Women’s Studies, Western Michigan University, USA
    • Esmeralda Mariano, Dept of Anthropology, Eduardo Mondlane University, Mozambique
    • Hannah Akuffo, Unit of Research Cooperation, Sida, Sweden
    • Hussein Kidanto, Ministry of Health and Dept of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Muhimbili National Hospital, Tanzania
    • Noemi Tousignant, Dept of History, Université de Montréal, Canada
    • Ruth Prince, Dept of Community Medicine and Global Health, University of Oslo, Norway
    • Wenzel Geissler, Dept of Anthropology, University of Oslo, Norway

    In this symposium we ask how local aspirations for, and visions of, health and well-being in African contexts are, or have been, facilitated, compromised, or bypassed by globally connected bio-medical projects and practices. Moving beyond critiques of evidence-based medicine or globally mobile models of medical knowledge and practice, the symposium explores cases where local actors and organizations seek to realize improvements in health that do not always conform to coexisting global/regional/national health priorities, programmes, policies or concepts. We further explore actor’s explicit, implicit and hidden strategies for capturing global practices and resource flows to facilitate local visions of health and well-being in Africa.

    The symposium is an activity of the Health, Politics and Culture in Africa theme at Uppsala University’s Forum for Africa Studies. Information about how to register to participate in the event is forthcoming in February.

    For more information about this event visit send an email to Eren Zink at 


  • Fri 26 May 2017, 10:15–11:30

    The Social Archaeometallurgy of Iron in Ancient Great Zimbabwe Urbanism, AD 900-1800

    The Social Archaeometallurgy of Iron in Ancient Great Zimbabwe Urbanism, AD 900-1800

    Ezekia Mtetwa (Dept of Archaeology and Ancient History, Uppsala University)

    Location: Engelska Parken, 3-2028

  • Fri 9 Jun 2017, 10:15–11:30

    A study on church organizations' health care delivery within the framework of Public Private Partnership in Tanzania

    A study on church organizations' health care delivery within the framework of Public Private Partnership in Tanzania

    Presenter: Josephine Sundqvist (Dept of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Dar es Salaam; Uppsala Religion and society Research Centre, Uppsala University)

    Location: Engelska Parken, 3-2028