The History Institute of Leiden University and the research institute CRASH (Chad) join hands to organize the end conference of the project ‘Connecting in Times of Duress’ (Leiden University) in the Chadian capital N’Djaména, 25-28 October 2017.
The conference presents and discusses the research findings of the project, which explored how the introduction of ICTs changes patterns of communication and information flows where people live in duress.
Connecting in Times of Duress, a five-year research project at the Leiden University, aims to understand the dynamics in the relationship between enduring conflict, hardship, governance regimes, mobility, migration and connectivity. The project has focused on these themes in Middle Africa, in particular in Cameroon, Chad, CAR, Nigeria, Congo-Brazzaville, DRC and Mali, a region with a shared history of mobility, of oppression and conflict and of connectivity. Reaching the end of the project, the conference in N’Djaména will present the research programme findings and address new questions that emerge from the research. It offers an opportunity for continuing the debate on the relation between conflict, mobility, and connectivity with those who share an interest in the rapidly changing societies and political dynamics in the Sahel and the broader region.
The programme of the conference is divided in six panels, themed ‘Escape Routes’, ‘Virtual Communities: Empowerment’, ‘Virtual Communities: Resistance’, ‘Duress and (Digital) Silence’, ‘Remembering in Generations’ and ‘Nomadic Minds’. Keynote speakers are Saïbou Issa and Shamil Jeppie. Read the full programme here.
The choice to organize the conference in the Chadian capital N’Djaména is based on the wish of the research team to be able to disseminate their research on the Middle African region in that same region, to allow a significant contribution from researchers in the area and to continue to engage with policy makers, academics, journalists and artists based there. To reach the broader academic, journalistic and policy-making community, the conference will be reported on in online audiovisual reports in collaboration with Voice4Thought.
In addition to the daytime programme, there will be attention for local artists who were ‘co-creators’ of some of the research of Connecting in Times of Duress. The conference coincides with the fourth edition of the music festival ‘N’djam s’enflamme en slam’ organized by renowned Chadian slam artist Croquemort, who also contributed to the research project. In collaboration with ‘N’djam s’enflamme en slam’, Connecting in Times of Duress presents a cultural programme consisting of the art exhibition ‘Vivre sous Contrainte / Living under Duress’, a film screening of Wùlu, and a public panel discussion on the theme ‘Revolution digitale / Digital Revolution’. Read more about the cultural programme here.