Patrick Manning, World History Center, University of Pittsburgh
Two major meetings in world and global history took place in August 2013, with the result that the global character of world-historical discourse has advanced significantly. The meetings were the “Coloquio Internacional: Latinoamérica y la Historia Global” at the Universidad San Andrés in Buenos Aires (August 9-10) and the “Colloque International: L’Afrique dans l’histoire mondiale” at the Université de Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso (August 19-20). In both cases, the meetings were associated with NOGWHISTO (Network of Global and World History Organizations), the UNESCO-affiliated federation of regional and topical associations of world historians.
The Latin American colloquium was chaired by Sergio Serulnikov, Professor of History and vice-rector of the Universidad San Andrés, and by Andrea Lluch, Associate Professor of Business. (See the program at: http://www.udesa.edu.ar/Unidades-Academicas/departamentos-y-escuelas/Humanidades/Congreso-Internacional-sobre-Historia-Global) The conference included 22 presentations, roughly half from institutions in Buenos Aires and half from more distant parts of Argentina and from 6 other Latin American nations and from the U.S. Presentations and debate took place principally in Spanish language. Topics included issues in global history, in economic and social history, and in links of national and global issues. The conferenced was supported by the World History Center at the University of Pittsburgh, the World History Network, and by the Universidad San Andrés. At the conclusion of the meeting, participants agreed to form an organization in global history, “Red Latinoamericana de Historia Global” (RLHG). The new organization will affiliate with NOGWHISTO and plans to meet again in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro. The organizing committee of RLHG includes Rossana Barragán, Alexandre Fortes, Sandra Kuntz Ficker, Andrea Lluch (coordinadora), Fernando Purcell, and Sergio Serulnikov. RLHG is creating a blog, which will be administered by members of the committee. The proceedings of the conference are expected to be published in a series of special issues of historical journals.
The Ouagadougou meeting served as the second congress of the African Network of Global Historians / Réseau africain d’histoire mondiale (ANGH/RAHM), founded in Ilorin, Nigeria, in 2009. (See the program at http://www.worldhistory.pitt.edu/documents/ANGH-RAHM/Ouagadougou.pdf) The conference was organized by Lazare Ki-Zerbo of the Fondation Internationale Joseph Ki-Zerbo and by Patrick Manning of the University of Pittsburgh; Prof. Moussa Willy Bantenga of the Department of History, Université de Ouagadougou, headed the host committee. Papers and debate were in French and English, with simultaneous translation by two translators. Financial support for the conference came from the World History Network, Inc., and from the Association universitaire de la francophonie (AUF). Papers centered on honoring Joseph Ki-Zerbo, one of the early great scholars in African history, and included papers on women, archaeology, regional identity, and migration. The conference proceedings are to be published in a book. In the General Assembly at the conclusion of the conference, the group recognized the service of the officers selected in 2009: Peter Adebayo (University of Ilorin), President; and David Blanks (American University in Cairo), Executive Secretary). Elected for the next term were Rokhaya Fall (Université Cheikh-Anta Diop, Dakar), President; and Patrick Manning (University of Pittsburgh), Executive Secretary. ANGH/RAHM emphasized maintaining close ties to the Association of African Historians (president Doulaye Konaté).
Further, participants in both the ANGH/RAHM and the RLHG expressed interest in the possibility of a meeting bringing together members of the African and Latin American groups. Members of the African group suggested Dakar as a possible venue.