5th AEGIS Thematic Conference of the Collaborative Research Group Africa in the Indian Ocean: A Passage to/from Africa: rhythmic exchanges in the Western Indian Ocean



Seascapes and landscapes in the Western Indian Ocean have long been intertwined. Given its geomorphology, the sea waters were and are an asset rather than a barrier to human exchanges and to the assertion of power. Communication along its shores developed forms of contiguity that overcame its expanses. Islands became bridges between continents and regions; languages such as Kiswahili cemented contacts, spread beliefs and created common heritages, seeping from coastal areas to the hinterland.

For centuries, the rhythm of such movements and exchanges was made possible but also conditioned by the seasonality of the monsoon regime. This cadence is a major structuring feature of the fluid networks linking East Africa to the Arabian Peninsula, the Persian Gulf, and the Western regions of the Indian subcontinent.

How did the rhythmic nature of these complex exchanges shape a plurality of practices and historical processes, and what of this shared heritage influences contemporaneity? Delving through its many variations, interactions and incidences is the challenge this interdisciplinary and interregional Conference aims to address.

This Conference calls for papers on issues concerning Africa and the Indian Ocean, bringing together researchers interested in discussing the following topics:

- Interpretations and representations of cultural encounters
- Mobility as a way of life, and its local impacts
- Diversification of religious ideas and practices
- Hegemonic powers and the dialectics of dependence and resistance
- Social asymmetries, economic exchanges, and political reconstructions
- Popular culture, oral and written literary traditions
- Colonialisms and decolonizing perspectives

The Conference will be held at the University of Urbino in Italy on the 4 - 5 of April 2024.

Deadline for sending abstracts is 8 January 2024; see here for the call for papers.

Please send your abstract to our secretariat at: crg.wio.urbino@gmail.com

We invite you to visit the conference site at this LINK.


We look forward to seeing you in Urbino.
Francesca Declich, University of Urbino Carlo Bo
Manuel Ramos, ISCTE, Lisbon