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Summer School: "The Value(s) of Science. The normative order of African Studies"

Teilnehmende Basel Summer School 2017

Basel Summer School 2017 (Mbaraka Matitu and Anthony Stewart)

The Centre for African Studies Basel (ZASB) calls for applications for the 4th Basel Summer School in African Studies (9-13 September 2019).

The Summer School aims at stimulating and consolidating a new perspective on African Studies. Its focus is on African Studies as an instance of “area studies”. It addresses themes that are theoretically, conceptually and methodologically relevant to the pursuit of reflection on the intellectual challenge of Africa as an object of knowledge and its contribution to general scholarship. The Summer School is organised by the Centre in Basel every second year alternating with the CASB-CODESRIA Summer School held on the continent. It is offered in the framework of the swissuniversities-funded Graduate Network African Studies Basel.

The Value(s) of Science. The normative order of African Studies

The Basel Summer School in African Studies 2019 addresses the issue of the normative order in African Studies. Science is a highly normative enterprise in that its ultimate goal, producing knowledge to render the world intelligible, constitutes a broad commitment to some notion of a better world. Part of the challenge of doing African Studies, therefore, should be a commitment to uncovering the values underlying science not to dispose of them, but to harness them to even better research. The title of the Summer School is cast purposefully in an ambiguous way. On the one hand, it speaks to the fundamental value of science and, on the other hand, to how interests come together to lend legitimacy and purpose to science. The basic goal of the Summer School is to address this ambivalence by inviting proposals which look into “the value(s) of science” from several angles: 

  • Which values underlie development research and how do they affect methodological choices?
  • How do ethical commitments shape how researchers frame their research?
  • Is there a politics of Western epistemology and, if so, what would be a scientific Asian Studies’ approach to problematize it?
  • What is the precise methodological argument behind decolonial calls for delinking?
  • How do the values of science inform its value?
  • What role is played by ideological commitments in the validation of knowledge?
  • How do ideas of a better life or world inform research projects?
Advanced Study Skills workshop: Composing Attractive Abstracts 

The half-day Advanced Study Skills workshop offers guidance on the content, structure and language conventions of conference and research article abstracts in the social sciences and humanities. At the end of the workshop, participants are expected to have gained independence in writing ready-to-submit abstracts for conferences or journals.

Deadline for registration is 5 August 2019.

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