This blog is associated with the Fall 2015 course for the African Democracy Project at Wayne State University. It provides a space to link student research projects through affiliated blogs, to share issues of contemporary significance, to explore themes of popular politics in the age of neoliberalism, and to document our experiences in Tanzania.
Jennifer Hart is an Assistant Professor of African History at Wayne State University. Her research explores the social, cultural, political, and economic significance of the “mundane” or “everyday” experiences and practices of Africans. She has spent the last 10 years conducting research in Ghana (West Africa) and London. Most of that work has been focused in Accra, Ghana, where she has conducted archival and ethnographic research on the history of African automobility, urban planning, and development. Her forthcoming book, Ghana on the Go: African Mobility in the Age of Motor Transportation, traces how different groups of Ghanaians shaped a distinct culture of automobility that reflected both the influence of foreign technological cultures and the socioeconomic priorities of African residents throughout the 20th century. You can follow her personal blog at www.ghanaonthego.com, and you can follow her on Twitter at @detroittoaccra. You can also follow her digital humanities project, which seeks to create an interactive map of the trotro system in Accra, Ghana, on Twitter at @accramobile.
Irvin D. Reid is President Emeritus, and Eugene Applebaum Distinguished Professor of Community Engagement at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. He also direct the Forum on Contemporary Issues in Society (FOCIS), which he created and ran before he left the presidency of Wayne. Under FOCIS, he along with two other faculty colleagues have initiated a documentary course entitled “Democracy in Africa” which initially focused on the presidential election in the Republic of Mozambique, but which has expanded to include Liberia, Ghana, Botswana, Namibia, and Tanzania. You can learn more about Dr. Reid’s work at the FOCIS website or on his personal blog.