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The Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies

Welcome

The Ferguson Centre promotes the interdisciplinary study of empire and postcolonial conditions with a particular focus on Africa and Asia. Since its establishment in 2002, it has hosted seminars, exchanges, postgraduates and run collaborative research projects.

Members have contributed to the writing of a range of current Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences courses including:  A326 Empire 1492-1975; A300 20th century literature: texts and debates; A215 Creative writing; A815 MA English; A230 Reading and studying literature. Members have also contributed to previous courses including: AA316 The nineteeth-century novel; A180 Heritage, whose heritage?; AD281 Understanding global heritage.

Centre Director: Dr Sandip Hazareesingh
Assistant Director: Dr John Slight

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News

Workshop on Sustainable Farming Practices Past and Present

Sandip workshop photo

The AHRC-funded Changing Farmers’ Lives Past and Present research project held its first event in Bangalore, India on 21-22 February 2018, co-organised by the Open University and the Karnataka based NGO Green Foundation.

A variety of presentations by academic researchers and development practitioners explored the potential, first, of Arts and Humanities approaches, in particular aspects of oral history, stories, drama, and film, to document and support small farmer creativity in developing resilience to livelihood challenges in relation to food, biodiversity, and climate issues; and second, of participatory methods aimed at local community conservation of agricultural biodiversity and revival and control of indigenous seeds. Each session was followed by lively discussions. See workshop programme.

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Events

Migration in colonial Africa and Asia: historical perspectives, connections and comparisons

Date: Monday 2 July Time: TBC; Venue: Seminar Room 6, The Library, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes

Migration is one of the foundational pillars of the story of humanity. The study of migration has been energised in recent decades by new sources and frameworks such as transnational history and diaspora studies. Migration is a topic that engages the attention of scholars in numerous disciplines, including history, human geography, development and literature. Understanding migration in its myriad forms has an urgent contemporary relevance in light of current migration movements driven by factors such as conflict (inter-state, intra-state, and non-state), labour demands in a globalised world, and climate change. By bringing together scholars working on historical migration in sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and Southeast Asia during the colonial period, this event enables area studies specialists who practice transnational history to engage in a productive intellectual dialogue with each other and attendees. The event aims to bridge the gap between scholars of Africa and Asia, and enable historical perspectives to inform research in other disciplines. See more details.

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The British Empire and the HAJJ book cover

New publication

The British Empire and the Hajj, 1865-1956 by John Slight, Harvard University Press, 2015.

Find out more about this book

Masjid Sultan (Sultan Mosque), Arab Street, Singapore (2007). Photo: Karl Hack

Masjid Sultan (Sultan Mosque), Arab Street, Singapore (2007). Photo: Karl Hack

Egyptian Prime Minister Abdel Nasser with Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru at the Bandung Conference, Indonesia, 1955

Egyptian Prime Minister Abdel Nasser with Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru at the Bandung Conference, Indonesia, 1955