Centring Africa: Postcolonial Perspectives on Architecture

Geschrieben am 14.08.2018
Kategorie(n): ARCH+ news, CCA, Forschung, Africa, Call for Papers

The CCA is launching a collaborative and multidisciplinary research project on architecture’s complex developments in sub-Saharan African countries after independence.
Deadline for proposals: 31 October 2018

Centring Africa: Postcolonial Perspectives on Architecture Photograph of National Printing Press, Nouakchott, Mauritania, ca. 1971. Slide from Kiran Mukerji Collection, CCA. ARCH280728

What would a history of architecture look like with Africa positioned at the centre? The Canadian Centre for Architecture solicits proposals for research projects that address crucial historiographic questions about the built environment in sub-Saharan Africa after independence, arising from the complexities of the new world order created around the idea of the Global South.

The architecture practice and discipline, along with academic institutions, archives, libraries, and museums, have been integral to what Valentin-Yves Mudimbe calls “the invention of Africa” by the West. This project therefore asks, first, how to understand architecture’s historical role in decolonization, neocolonialism, globalization, and their manifestations across the continent, at local and regional scales; and, second, how this understanding can challenge established methods and disciplinary conventions of architectural and urban studies. “Centring Africa: Postcolonial Perspectives on Architecture” seeks to contextualize such seemingly paradoxical relations as those among building and unbuilding, formal and informal, appropriated and expropriated, and modern and traditional. The project aims to question, and eventually shift, perspectives shaped by North/South knowledge divides.

To learn more and apply to the eighteen-month multidisciplinary research project, please visit www.cca.qc.ca/centringafrica

Applicants may propose projects that complicate Africanist, global, and postcolonial approaches to architectural history. Projects addressing cases that cannot be contained within a post-independence periodization and the sub-Saharan context will still be considered. Collective projects are also welcome, but responsibilities and roles must be clearly defined. Proposals should also address the multidisciplinary methodology inherent to the theme of architecture’s role in decolonization, articulating how their project addresses broader questions in disciplines beyond architecture, urbanism, and planning such as anthropology, cultural studies, history, geography, political science, and political economy. 

External advisors
• Johan Lagae, Ghent University, Belgium
• Taibat Lawanson, University of Lagos, Nigeria
• Ijlal Muzaffar, Rhode Island School of Design, USA
• Itohan Osayimwese, Brown University, USA 

CCA Committee
• Mirko Zardini, CCA Director
• Giovanna Borasi, CCA Chief Curator
• Kim Förster, CCA Associate Director, Research 

Application requirements
The collaborative and multidisciplinary research project is open to researchers, journalists, practitioners, and cultural producers from architecture history and other relevant disciplines. Those interested should submit a proposal through the online application portal by 31 October 2018.

For questions regarding the program, please contact studium@cca.qc.ca


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