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28th Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2016 Channeling Classical African Wisdom as a Response to Contemporary Challenges
We invite papers that offer broad topical approaches and critical applications that consider, as did Ptahotep and other African classical and traditional philosophers, the culture’s pedagogies of morality.  Presentations should consider “What is the desired moral code of contemporary Black life?” and “What does our culture offer as a premise for its ethical and moral ideals?”  We have a cultural continuity of intergenerational wisdom, ethics, morality, and values that (1) affirms the breadth and historicity of our culture’s core orientations to self-actualization and humanity and (2) can inspire and heal the communities of Ferguson and other national and global sites that have experienced racialized trauma and loss at the hands of Western systems of so-called justice and order.  This year’s conference aims to generate discourses of victorious consciousness by advancing research that resets the barometer and redirects Africans worldwide to re-learn and prioritize our own ancient cultural practices of ethics and morality. This conference aims to contribute to community development by demonstrating that our communities do not need social policing because our culture has its own models and orientations to justice, righteousness, and harmonious living.  This call for papers is inspired by scholarship on the teachings of Ptahotep, and we encourage participants and presenters to familiarize yourselves with the primary sources featured in Molefi Kete Asante’s The Egyptian Philosophers: Ancient African Voices from Imhotep to Akhenaten, Asa Hilliard’s The Teachings of Ptahotep:  The Oldest Book in the World, and Maulana Karenga’s Selections from the Husia: Sacred Wisdom of Ancient Egypt.  Papers should reflect the highest critical consciousness of Afrocentric and African-centered epistemologies of the discipline of Africana Studies.
 
 
27th Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2015 Critical Afrocentric Re-Framing of Intellectual Portraits: Contemporary Updates to Traditions of Genius

In his preface to his classic work, The African Origins of Civilization, titled “The Meaning of My Work,” Cheikh Anta Diop challenges us to continue his Afrocentric initiative of cultural retrieval and reconstruction and “to define an image of a modern Africa reconciled with its past and preparing for its future.” Indeed, he says, “Only a loyal determined struggle to destroy cultural aggression and bring out the truth, whatever it may be, is revolutionary and consonant with real progress.” Molefi Asante takes up this challenge in his seminal text, The Afrocentric Idea, and asks us in our scholarly work and social practice to engage in a “transformative turnabout,” a world-encompassing project of an Afrocentric preconception and engaging the world; “taking the globe and turning it over so that we see (and pursue) all the possibilities of a world where Africa, for example, is subject not object.” It is within these Afrocentric understandings of our social and intellectual duties coupled with a model from the closing “Vision Presentation” from the 2014 conference—a resurrection of the ideas and identity of the ancient Kemetic philosopher Plotinus—that collectively inspire the 2015 theme: Critical Afrocentric Re-framing of Intellectual Portraits: Contemporary Updates to Traditions of Genius.

We seek cutting-edge papers from an international cadre of scholars to introduce intriguing and effective ideas about using the Afrocentric paradigm to update, re-frame, modernize, and re-engage African global intellectual legacies. We are excited about the methods and applications presenters will offer to give contemporary Afrocentric readings of the knowledge and values found in experiential and life narratives from the global African intellectual tradition. Such a collective exploration of the possibilities of discovery and re-discovery of innovation and genius-thought has dynamic potential to inform contemporary strategies for liberation, agency, historical awareness, and ancestral acknowledgment. We invite scholars to present innovative applied interpretations of narrative, memoir, autobiography, biography, dirge, memorial, manifesto, speeches, personal philosophy, organizational philosophy, mythology, leadership, legend, and liberation visions from our culture’s exemplars, with an emphasis on introducing critical perspectives that advance new/renewed theoretical approaches commensurate with the Afrocentric paradigm. We anticipate that the 2015 Conference presentations will model and theorize, with Afrocentric precision, how to read, process, and recycle the culture’s most profound and functional ideas in order to increase consciousness, stabilize cultural memory, and reinforce traditions of masterful communication for the benefit of African people and for the improvement of humanity.

Program for the 27th Conference

 
26th Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2014 An Afrocentric Reimagining and Remaking of the World: Classical and Contemporary Paradigms, Projects and Practice

In his preface to his classic work, The African Origins of Civilization, titled “The Meaning of My Work,” Cheikh Anta Diop challenges us to continue his Afrocentric initiative of cultural retrieval and reconstruction and “to define an image of a modern Africa reconciled with its past and preparing for its future.” Indeed, he says, “Only a loyal determined struggle to destroy cultural aggression and bring out the truth, whatever it may be, is revolutionary and consonant with real progress.” Molefi Asante takes up this challenge in his seminal text, The Afrocentric Idea, and asks us in our scholarly work and social practice to engage in a “transformative turnabout,” a world-encompassing project of an Afrocentric preconception and engaging the world; “taking the globe and turning it over so that we see (and pursue) all the possibilities of a world where Africa, for example, is subject not object.”

It is within this Afrocentric understanding of our tasks that we have framed this year’s theme: “An Afrocentric Reimagining and Remaking the World: Classical and Modern Paradigms, Projects and Practice.” Moreover, this year’s conference meets at the intersection of two main historical milestones and anniversaries, the centennial of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) founded by Marcus Garvey and dedicated to the global liberation of African peoples; and the sesquicentennial of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, an important marker in the African American struggle for civil rights and social justice in U.S. society which invite critical and varied reflection and discourse on these significant historical achievements. Finally, we have an ongoing concern in critically examining, reflecting on and engaging in dialogue and discourse on a wide range of topics and issues in Africana Studies.

Program for the 26th Conference

 
25th Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2013 Afrocentricity and Africana Studies: Diop, Asante and the Radical Aesthetic of African Culture

Sponsored by the Molefi Kete Asante Institute for Afrocentric Studies and the Diopian Institute for Scholarly Advancement

The Molefi Kete Asante Institute for Afrocentric Studies and the Diopian Institute for Scholarly Advancement (DISA) are pleased to announce our collaboration on the 25th anniversary of the annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference. Over the years, there have been hundreds of papers delivered at the Diop Conference, scores of publishing opportunities, and numerous networks created among the most consistently insightful and productive of scholars. We have achieved far more in 25 years than we could have ever imagined. Yet there is more to do. This is why we are urging you to attend this year’s celebratory conference. The Diop Conference coincides with the 25th year of the first doctoral program in African American Studies at Temple University. These two events, combining the academic and the professional, represent dual achievements of our field. Your attendance, alongside that of your colleagues, will mark this year’s conference as one of the most rewarding ever.

In the latter part of the 20th century, the Afrocentric Idea, as a philosophical and theoretical construct centered on African subjectivity and agency and Hip Hop, as the manifestation of African artistic expression exploded onto the American, and subsequently, the international intellectual and cultural landscape. Also, there was during this period an increasing study of the works of Cheikh Anta Diop on a global level, raising the question of the value of the study of the classical African civilization of Egypt as a way to enrich and expand our thought and practice as African people. At this historical juncture, a critical analysis of the influence of Afrocentricity and the classical African tradition on hip hop is a timely and necessary initiative in the rescue and recovery of the contemporary African mind. In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference and the first Ph.D. program in the field, the MKA Institute and DISA invite scholars, educators, artists, and community activists to engage this landmark conference and embrace the opportunity to critically examine and reflect on the evolution of Africana Studies, Afrocentricity, and Diopian thought, and their impact in fostering one of the most influential intellectual, social, and cultural movements of the era.

Program for the 25th Conference

 
24th Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2012 Re-igniting the Pan-African Imperative: Fortifying a Consciousness of Victory

The historical narrative of African peoples’ ongoing quest for a liberated and righteous world is characterized by its imperatives toward social justice and ensuring human dignity. The 2012 Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference welcomes scholars, activists, educators, and the community to contribute papers and to convene around the theme of reigniting a Pan-African vision and reasserting an African ethic to move beyond the rhetoric of (1) “the age of Obama” and (2) “the African Renaissance” as an effort to more precisely confront the many global challenges facing African people. This year’s theme is a reminder that we achieve victory through the uncompromising processes of applying consciousness, engaging in activism, and inspiring behaviors that are consistent with the ethical principles that have guided our struggles. We encourage scholar-activists to translate this consciousness of victory into intellectual initiatives that will help transform the Pan-African world.

Program for the 24th Conference

 
23rd Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2011 Fundamentals and Innovations in Afrocentric Research: Mapping Core and Continuing Knowledge of African Civilizations

Enhancing and transmitting competence and expertise on ancient African civilizations is an enduring enterprise in the Afrocentric engagement of the world and its phenomena. The 2011 conference theme encourages scholars, activists, educators, and the community to accept the challenge to ensure that the legacies of ancient African cultures are maximized as practical tools based on the genius and model they provide for daily cultural advancement, ethical consciousness, well-being, character building, leadership, socio-political stability, learning, behavior, resistance, and problem-solving. This year’s theme serves as a reminder that a premise of Afrocentricity is linking contemporary knowledge with the appropriate classical African reference point, and we encourage scholars to stretch intellectual capacity to new heights of discovery and application in this area.

Program for the 23rd Conference

22nd Annual Cheikh Anta Diop International Conference, 2010 Afrocentric Imperatives for the Pan-African Personality: The Challenge and Promise of African Agency
This year’s conference amends Kwame Nkrumah’s and Cheikh Anta Diop’s challenge to the African Personality—to move beyond mere festivals and cultural celebrations of African identity—to introduce a cohesive Pan-African Personality configured to reflect the distinct cultural character of African aspirations at home and abroad. The Pan-African personality embodies the historical memory, common sense, collective consciousness, artifacts, social institutions, innovations and creative visions of the composite African People. As such, the Pan-African Personality reflects the contemporary conditions of African people globally. Africans are involved in a wide range of activities to improve our conditions and life chances. The efficacies of our institutions, programs and activities require reflective evaluations that use Afrocentric criteria.
 

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