The Journal of West African History

International Launch Conference on

“The State of the Field and New Directions”

East Lansing Marriott at University Place

April 8-9, 2016

I am pleased to announce the Journal of West African History (JWAH) International Launch Conference. This free two-day conference will take place at the East Lansing Marriott at University Place, East Lansing, Michigan from April 8-9, 2016; and will bring together seminal scholars and students of West African History, to elucidate the region’s role in world affairs, the cultural linkages between West Africa and its Diaspora, as well as the impact of globalization on this western portion of the African continent.

Twenty-four established US-based and international West Africanist scholars, of Anglophone, Francophone, Lusophone, and Arabophone histories will present papers that explore the state of the field, as well as new directions on the following panels: (1) Women, Gender, and Sexuality in West Africa; (2) History, Health, Security and Contemporary Media in West Africa; (3) West African Narratives of Slavery and the Slave Trades; (4) West African and Diasporic Religions; (5) West African Oralities and Oral History; and (6) Traditional Archives and New Media.

I have lined up three distinguished keynote speakers—Dr. Johnnetta Cole, President Emerita of Spelman and Bennett Colleges, and Director of the National Museum of African Art (NMAfA); Akwasi Opong-Fosu MP, Minister of State at the Presidency, Republic of Ghana; and Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili, former Nigerian Federal Minister of Solid Minerals, former Nigerian Federal Minister for Education, former Vice President of World Bank’s Africa Division, and founder of the “Bring Back Our Girls” Campaign—to address the gathering.

I ask that you please join us for what promises to be a very important and illuminating conference; and consider offering this opportunity as an extra credit option for your students.

Thank you and best regards,


Nwando Achebe, Ph.D.
Professor of African History
Founding Editor-in-Chief, Journal of West African History (JWAH)

For more information, please contact

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Nwando Achebe’s Thanks and Words of Appreciation:

My heartfelt thanks and appreciation go out to my colleague, Dean Rehberger, of History Department and  MATRIX: The Center for Digital Humanities and Social Sciences, for setting up this marvelous website. My appreciation also goes to my assistant and JWAH office manager, Tara Reyelts, for updating and managing it.