In the 1960s and 1970s, Portugal’s African colonies fought—and won—bloody wars for independence. Nearly a half-century after the end of these liberation struggles in Lusophone Africa, scholars are rethinking earlier narratives of these often-violent struggles for independence. What perspectives went overlooked in the contemporary discourse and early histories of these movements? What new approaches can highlight marginalized perspectives on the process of achieving independence? The organizers of this panel seek scholars putting forward new research on the independence struggles across Lusophone Africa. The panel currently consists of scholars looking at the liberation struggles in Guinea-Bissau and Mozambique, and welcome those looking elsewhere in Lusophone Africa, as well as those taking innovative approaches to the countries listed above. We are interested in emphasizing a diversity of approaches and the complexity of the lived experience of those fighting on either side and/or non-combatants. Some possible approaches include, but are not limited to, the transnational or transregional dynamics of these struggles, the place of historical memory, the role of gender, decisions of individuals to participate (or not) militarily, and/or a comparative approach looking at the liberation struggle in multiple countries.
Proposals consisting of a paper/presentation title and an abstract (maximum 200 words) should be submitted to David Glovsky (glovskyd[at]msu.edu) by Friday, March 6, 2020. Participants must also pre-register for the African Studies Association Annual Meeting by March 15, 2020.