African Feminisms Lecture Series: "Crafting an Inclusive Citizenship for Women in the Post-Colonial African Moment"
Fri, October 29, 2010 | ISES Gallery (JES A230) - Warfield Center for African and African American Studies and African and African Diaspora Studies Department
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
African Feminisms Lecture Series
Friday, October 29th
3:00 PM, ISESE Gallery/Warfield Center Jester Center A232A
"Crafting an Inclusive Citizenship for Women in the Post-Colonial African Moment"
Dr. Patricia McFadden, Distinguished Visiting Professor, Women's and Gender Studies and African American Studies, Syracuse University
“Crafting Inclusive Citizenship for Women in the African Post-colonial Moment”
Patricia McFadden, Syracuse University, October 2010
Through anti-colonial/liberation struggles over the past 50 years African societies and women in particular moved from the margins and shadows of colonial/authoritarian repression and ‘invisibility’, into the ‘light’ of independence as a temporal moment of euphoria and seemingly endless opportunity. In a myriad of way, this was the real lived experience of Africans across the various gendered and class divides of the continent. African women who participated actively (and in various forms) in struggles against colonial repression and exclusion, stepped into the public, civic spheres of their respective societies emboldened by the knowledge that resistance and persistence do bear political, economic and socio-cultural fruit. For the next half century, African women strode into a different kind of future; a future that they were crafting as emerging citizens of their respective societies. The evidence is plentiful and unavoidable. Africans have made a real difference for themselves, and the future of the continent is unstoppable.
However, as with working people’s communities everywhere in the world today, Africans have also had to contend with the familiar hurdles of capitalist exclusion and impunity. Burdened by centuries of unequal, exploitative relations of production and power (structural adjustment; militarization and war; environmental and ecological degradation; and a dysfunctional social and political infrastructure which affects the majority of women and their community in especially egregious forms) - the imperative of re-conceptualizing women’s political visions and of re-building the vehicles for social transformation has become central to the contemporary African feminist project.
This presentation will attempt to set out some of the critical challenges that most women and the people of the continent face; and some of the emerging strategies in terms of crafting and implementing the core entitlements that will constitute an inclusive citizenship in the context of the contemporary African post-colonial moment.