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Ohio Wesleyan Announces Speakers for 2011 Sagan National Colloquium
Lecture Series to Examine Issues of Governance, Equity, Global Citizenship in Africa

August 29, 2011

DELAWARE, OH – Ohio Wesleyan University’s 2011 Sagan National Colloquium will kick off Sept. 7 with a year-long look at the issue of “Africa: Governance, Equity, and Global Citizenship.”

With the end of apartheid in South Africa and the discovery of oil on other parts of the continent, Africa is poised for its third wave of accelerated economic development, regional economic cooperation, and genuine democratic reform, said Randy Quaye, Ph.D., director of Ohio Wesleyan’s 2011 Sagan National Colloquium.

“Africa, as a continent, has been understudied and misunderstood – in spite of the remarkable progress made since independence in the early 1960s,” said Quaye, also an OWU professor of Black World Studies. “The colloquium will provide a forum for students, faculty, and the general audience to examine, thematically, issues affecting the continent and, in the process, help dispel some of the negative stereotypes about the continent.”

All colloquium presentations will begin at 7 p.m. in the Benes Rooms of OWU’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., unless otherwise noted. All colloquium events are free and open to the public.

  • Sept. 7 – Richard Fusch, Ph.D., will discuss “Africa: An Introduction to a Continent and its People.” Fusch, an Ohio Wesleyan professor of Geography, is a specialist in urban geography, urban planning, regional development, and cultural geography.
  • Sept. 13 – Students who have spent a semester in the Ohio Wesleyan in Tanzania program will discuss their research and internship experiences. Topics will include medical systems, women’s status, economic development, and social policy. Read more about OWU in Tanzania.
  • Sept. 14 to Oct.25 – Photography by Ryan Spencer Reed documenting the war in Darfur will be on exhibit in Gallery 2001 inside Beeghly Library, 43 Rowland Ave. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.
  • Sept. 15 – Simon Gikandi, Ph.D., will discuss “Africa and the Culture of Human Rights.” Gikandi, the Princeton University Robert Schirmer Professor of English, has expertise in Anglophone literatures and cultures of Africa, India, the Caribbean, Postcolonial Britain, the “Black” Atlantic, and the African Diaspora.
  • Sept. 20 – Julius Nyang’oro, Ph.D., will discuss “The Depth of Democratic Change in Africa.” Nyang’oro, professor and chair of Afro-American Studies at the University of North Carolina, researches Africa’s comparative political economy, particularly the role of the State in national development.
  • Sept. 27 – Sean Kay, Ph.D., will discuss “Africa’s Wars: What Somalia, Rwanda, and Libya tell us about Global Security.” Kay, an Ohio Wesleyan professor of Politics and Government and chair of OWU’s International Studies Program, is a frequent commentator on international security issues in the media and has written multiple books on related topics, including “Global Security in the Twenty-First Century.” This event will be streamed live and archived afterward at StreamOWU.
  • Oct. 6 – James Makubuya, Ph.D., will perform traditional African folk music. Makubuya, a professor of Music at Wabash College, plays the endongo (8-string bowl lyre) and other instruments including fiddles, harps, thumb pianos, xylophones, panpipes, flutes, and drums. This event will be held at 7 p.m. in Gray Chapel inside University Hall, 61 S. Sandusky St.
  • Oct. 18 – Karin Ryan, director of the Human Rights Program at The Carter Center, will discuss “The Dignity Revolution of 2011: Implications for U.S. Africa Policies.” Ryan works with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and Rosalynn Carter on issues including their efforts on behalf of victims of human rights violations through personal interventions with heads of state. This lecture is co-sponsored by the annual Corinne Lyman Lecture Series on International Studies.
  • Oct. 25 – Photographer Ryan Spencer Reed will discuss his images depicting the war in Darfur, at 7 p.m. in the Bayley Room inside Beeghly Library, 43 Rowland Ave.
  • Oct. 26 – Abena Busia, Ph.D., will present a documentary film that she and her sister, Ama Busia, made about their brother: “The Prof, A Man Remembered: The Life, Vision and Legacy of Dr. K.A. Busia.” The film tells the story of the extraordinary scholar who rose from humble beginnings to become Prime Minister of the Second Republic of Ghana.
  • Oct. 27 – Abena Busia, Ph.D., will discuss “Ghana in Search of Democracy: Civic Education and Democratic Governance in the Second Republic.” Busia, a professor in the Women’s and Gender Studies Department at Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences, is co-director of the groundbreaking “Women Writing Africa Project,” a multivolume anthology published by the Feminist Press at the City University of New York. She also serves on the advisory boards of the Ghana Education Project and the African Women’s Development Fund.

Topics to be announced:

  • Nov. 1 – George Mensah, M.D., F.A.C.C., F.A.C.P., F.A.C.N., is a visiting full professor at the University of Cape Town in South Africa; vice president of Global Nutrition, Global Research, and Development at PepsiCo; and a foundation fellow of the Ghana College of Physicians. He also is an honorary fellow of the College of Physicians of South Africa.
  • Nov. 3 – Deborah Bräutigam, M.A.L.D., Ph.D., OWU Class of 1976, is a professor in the International Development Program at American University. Her research looks at China-Africa relations, foreign aid, industrialization, state-building, and development.
  • Nov. 15– Ousmane Badiane, Ph.D., is the Africa Director for the International Food Policy Institute. He is in charge of partnerships with African organizations in issues of food policy research, capacity strengthening, and policy communications.

In addition to these presentations, Ohio Wesleyan faculty and students will participate in three travel-learning courses about Africa in 2012: “Nation Building in Ghana,” “Translational Research in Psychology” (Tanzania), and “Biology of East Africa” (Tanzania and Kenya). In addition, the Ohio Wesleyan in Tanzania Program will be held during spring semester 2012.

Each year, Ohio Wesleyan’s Sagan National Colloquium addresses an issue of international importance. It is funded through an endowment from the late Margaret (Pickett) Sagan and the late John Sagan, both members of the OWU Class of 1948. Past Colloquium speakers have included social activist Gloria Steinem, authors Barbara Ehrenreich and Kurt Vonnegut, Nobel Peace Prize winner Jody Williams, and former President Gerald Ford.


Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities, with more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Located in Delaware, Ohio, just minutes north of Ohio’s capital and largest city, Columbus, the university combines a globally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that translate classroom theory into real-world practice. OWU’s close-knit community of 1,850 students represents 45 states and 52 countries. Ohio Wesleyan was named to the 2010 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with distinction, is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” and is included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.