Chanco hosts 2017 Anthropology Southern Africa (ASnA) Conference
The Faculty of Social Science, through the Centre of Social Research (CSR) hosted this year’s conference on the theme “Strengthening the Teaching of Anthropology in Southern Africa”. The conference, which took place from 18th to 20th August, 2017, drew participants various universities and research institutions in southern Africa and beyond, including Malawi, South Africa, Zambia, Tanzania, Botswana, Cameroon, Kenya and USA.
The conference was officially opened by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Malawi, Professor John D. Kalenga Saka. In his speech, the VC highlighted that in most countries and universities in Southern Africa the teaching of anthropology is weak with the exception of South Africa where most universities offer this subject. He therefore underscored the need for other universities including the University of Malawi to learn from South Africa and make informed decisions on how as countries in the region we can both introduce and strengthen the teaching of the subject.
The conference benefited from two keynote speakers, Professor Owen Sichone from Copperbelt University in Zambia and Professor Paul Nkwi from the Catholic University of Cameroon. These learned colleagues set the tone of the conference as they stressed the need for strengthening the teaching of anthropology by clearly probing the key issues to be addressed to make anthropology desirable and the graduates from anthropology programmes relevant to social development in the countries concerned.
These conferences are rotated within the universities in southern Africa annually. The next ASnA conference is scheduled to be hosted by the University of Botswana in 2018.