Black Mobilities: Performance, and WorldWide Webs of 21st Century Black Identity

Organizer and Panelist: Abimbola Adelakun
Panelists: Adedoyin Ogunfeyimi (Dartmouth College), James Yeku (University of Saskatchewan)

This panel takes off from Gilroy and George-Graves to critically examines ongoing issues related to performance, black identity, and the contours of the emerging formations in the experiences of mobile Africans as they navigate new territories in the 21st century.

Dr. Abimbola A. Adelakun is an assistant professor in the Department of African/African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She studies modern African culture through the disciplinary lenses of performance, gender, religion, Africana, and Yoruba studies. Her academic articles have been published in Journal of Women and Religion, and Jenda: Journal of Culture and African Women Studies, and several book collections. She recently published a co-edited book collection titled Art, Creativity, and Politics in Africa and the Diaspora. Abimbola is also the author of Under the Brown Rusted Roofs (Kraft Books), and writes a weekly column for PUNCH Newspapers.

Dr. Adedoyin Ogunfeyimi has a faculty position with the Institute for Writing and Rhetoric in Dartmouth College. As a faculty member at the Institute, he carries out a rigorous qualitative research method on writerly pleasure and designs and teaches courses in writing and rhetoric that emphasizes inclusion in the US higher education, minority social movement uprisings, and truth and reconciliation processes in South Africa, Canada, United States, and Asia. In addition to his research and teaching roles in the Institute, Ogunfeyimi pursues research interests on minority rhetorical practices that focus on how ethnic minorities in Africa repurpose their visual and discursive cultural practices –deities, puppets, naked bodies, war canoes, etc. –as sites of resistance to negotiate a hospitable condition for themselves. He has presented his research in major rhetoric, writing, and Africa studies conferences, seminar, and workshop such as the African Studies Association (ASA), International Society for the History of Rhetoric (ISHR), Rhetoric Society of America (RSA), and Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC). Presently, he is working on his monograph, which he tentatively titled: Hybrid Ethos: The Making of a Hospitable Ecology, and many other article and chapter manuscripts, some of which have been published or/and accepted for publication. He was a Fulbright scholar and Walter John J. Vollrath Fellow at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he completed his doctorate in rhetorical studies.

Dr. James Yeku recently completed a Ph.D. in English at the University of Saskatchewan where he currently teaches as a sessional instructor. His research explores interdisciplinary areas such as cultural studies, digital media, social media in Africa, as well as African literature. His work has appeared in both African Studies Quarterly, and the Journal of African Cultural Studies. He is currently working on a book project that highlights the relationship between social media, performance, and online popular culture in Africa.