Deadline: 7 February 2020
Open to: early-career scholars based in an African institution
Benefits: fellowships will cover return air-fare, accommodation and living costs for a period of four weeks
This year’s Cadbury program and conference is concerned with processes of interpretation in African societies and African studies: “Making Sense: Language, Text and Interpretation in African Studies”.
How do the authors of what we call ‘sources’ convey meaning in their written and oral texts? How do these meanings develop in historically specific semantic worlds? How is meaning transformed through translations, reinterpretations and struggles over meaning? How is the world made sense of in African languages and epistemic traditions, and what changes when analysts – African and non-African – make sense of African texts and societies in different discursive contexts? We wish to discuss what makes the understanding of African societies possible; what is at stake when different types of exegetes interpret the past or the present of Africa.
The Cadbury program (and conference) invites contributions that engage this order of questions in relation to concrete processes and projects of research. It is open to researchers coming from various disciplines and multi- and inter-disciplinary backgrounds and all types of sources on all African regions and historical periods. We particularly encourage applications from researchers who work on a specific source or corpus of sources in an African language (including Arabic and other languages used in Africa) and who intend to carry out a critical semantic analysis of the meanings, interpretations and uses of this material. Fellowship applications will be selected on the basis of their interest and originality with regards to questions of interpretation: how can the meanings of what we call our sources be accessed? What problems arise in the process of interpreting? How is the researcher positioned in relation to the authors of his/her sources, and the users and audiences of the knowledge s/he analyses and/or produces? And how do researchers represent the phenomena they study – are their interpretations new representations? How are they related to the original meanings conveyed by the producers of their sources?
- They are looking for early-career scholars whose research would benefit from a residential fellowship of up to four weeks at the University of Birmingham;
- Applicants must be based in an African institution;
- They should be in the early stages of their academic careers (that is, they should have completed a PhD within the last four years, or now be close to completing one) and they must demonstrate that their research is relevant to the theme outlined above.
Fellowships will cover return air-fare, accommodation and living costs for a period of four weeks. The Cadbury fellows will have time to use the University’s excellent library resources, discuss their work with academic staff and postgraduate students at DASA, and contribute to the intellectual life of the department by participating in the numerous events that will be organised here during the period of the fellowships.
How to apply?
If you would like to be considered for the 2020 scheme, please send your application by email to Dr Ceri Whatley on [email protected] by 7 February 2020.
In your email, please let us know how you learned about this program and confirm that, if selected, you would be able to come to Birmingham during the fellowship period 27 April 2020 to 6 June 2020. Attached to your email should be two documents:
- A research project description of 1500 words, describing: a) the research that you have already done, b) the specific aspect that you seek to develop during the fellowship, and c) how this relates to the theme of Language, Text and Interpretation in African Studies.
- A CV of no more than 3 pages including the names and contacts of two referees.
For more details, visit the official web site.