African Musics of the Portuguese and French-Speaking Worlds


by Nelima Kerré | April 14, 2009 • The University International Center will be hosting an interesting event.

International Symposium on Popular Music Studies: African Musics of the Portuguese- and French-Speaking Worlds

Thursday, Friday, and Monday April 23, 24 & 27, 2009

Link to Program (in .pdf format)

Link to Poster (in .pdf format)

Schedule of Events: (click on titles to learn more about each event)

Thursday, April 23, 7:30pm – Film Screening of “Fados” – Walker Art Center [Free]

Friday, April 24, 8:45am-6:30pm – Panels, Speakers, reception (.pdf file) – 100 University International Center

Friday, April 24, 8:00pm – Carmen Souza in Concert – Cedar Cultural Center

Monday, April 27, 4:00pm –“Jazz Transatlantic” Lecture by Gerhard Kubik, Universität Wien – 125 Nolte Center

This international symposium will bring together scholars offering different interdisciplinary approaches and thematic foci centering on the popular musics of Angola, Cape Verde, Congo, Mali, Mozambique, Portugal, and Senegal.

Popular Music Studies has now consolidated itself as an established multidisciplinary field, particularly in the Anglophone academy. In the cultures that are the focus of this symposium Popular Music Studies still remains a marginal field. Yet, this field has proven to be particularly fertile in the realm of knowledge production as it actively engages a wide spectrum of disciplines, media, and thematic areas such as musicology, political economy, cultural studies, history, globalization, critical theory, national identity formations, literary studies, digital media, translocal diasporic identities, race and ethnicity, visual culture, gender and sexuality, performance studies, as well as pedagogy, among others.

The aims of this symposium are manifold: (1) to showcase cutting edge scholarly work in the field of Popular Music Studies focusing on musical cultures that are less well-known in today’s Anglophone-dominated globalized world and that are rarely in dialogue with one another; (2) to critically explore the multidimensional role of Africa or the Black Atlantic as major reference points in the historical formation of musical cultures in the Lusophone and Francophone worlds; (3) to enhance the academic life of the university with an international event that highlights a very dynamic and lively field of scholarly inquiry that intersects with popular culture, where there are a number of faculty and graduate students in CLA pursuing research projects; (4) to involve the community at large by organizing, together with the symposium, a film session on Portuguese popular music at the Walker Art Center (Fados [2007] by Spanish director Carlos Saura) and a concert at the Cedar Cultural Center (Carmen Souza [Cape Verde/Portugal]); (5) to collaborate with departments across the University of Minnesota campus, as well as other colleges in the Twin Cities area through active participation and attendance to the events.