Friday, 1 March 2013

Centre of African studies, University of London
Africa Seminar
Child-naming Song Poetry of South-East Yoruba
Dr Rotimi Fasan
Leventis fellow, CAS
Osun State University, Nigeria
 Monday 04 March
5pm, Room 273, SOAS Main building
Chaired by Dr Akin Oyetade, SOAS
Previous studies in Yoruba oral poetry have largely focussed on Oyo, Egba and Egbado in the North-West, giving little attention to other areas of Yorubaland including Ondo, Ikale and Akoko in the South-East; Ijesa, Ife and Ekiti in the Centre. Furthermore, the forms these studies concentrated on, mostly among the chants, are invariably cultic and of a restricted spread. The more general, non-cultic forms, cutting across the vocal patterns of Yoruba poetry, significantly among the songs, are less frequently investigated where they are investigated at all. The consequence is that they are becoming extinct due to social modernity that is driven on the one hand by a combination of new spirituality and westernisation, sometimes misguided and newfangled; and on the other hand by neglect in the academy. This is the point at which this study seeks entry, focussing on the less investigated forms of indigenous songs that are performed at the birth of a child or during child-naming ceremonial rites in South-East Yorubaland . This genre of traditional songs is rooted in Yoruba philosophy and poetry and constitutes the life-spring of popular, neo-traditional music like juju, fuji , waka, dadakuada and highlife.   
All welcome, for more information:

3rd Africa – South America Summit (ASA) holds from 20 – 23 February 2013 in Malabo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea on the theme: “Strategies and Mechanisms to strengthen South-South Cooperation”.

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Malabo 22 February 2013 – “It is important to have unity so let us establish a common front by strengthening the socio-economic and cultural ties, to address the challenges faced by the two regions in the rapidly globalised world” she said. She urged both regions to form a strong political and economic block to enable them have a strong degree of freedom in order to customize the ambitions towards securing quality life for their respective populations” said Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) while addressing the 3rd Africa – South America (ASA) Summit, holding today Friday 22 February 2013, at the Sipoppo Convention Centre, Malabo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea.
Referring to the celebration of the golden jubilee of the continental organization, Mrs. Dlamini-Zuma underlined the importance of observing 50 years of achievement of Africa through a progressive path towards integration and unity, thus, the need to promote solidarity and partnership between South American and Africa, especially as they both share a common history and cultural heritage.
“We are proud of the achievements made by the great sons and daughters of Africa who sacrificed during the struggles against colonialism and apartheid to whom we shall forever be grateful”, said Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. She added that, the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) on the theme “Panafricanism and African Renaissance”, is an opportunity to “complete the emancipation of our peoples through a total recovery of our African identity and dignity and reach greater achievements in our quest for peace, stability and prosperity, in order to bear with proud and humility our responsibilities in the international arena” she emphasized. .
Dr. Dlamini – Zuma highlighted that Africa cannot ignore the common heritage shared by the two regions forged by historical ties. “We have no choice but to take responsibility over our respective destinies in a collective approach as this is dictated by our past and present as well as by the need for us to successfully fight for a bright future” she explained.
According to the AUC Chairperson, a strong South – South cooperation will facilitate trade and industry development for both regions, including the sharing of best practices in the fields of education, health, science and technology, culture and tourism; agriculture and rural development; employment creation; youth and gender mainstreaming, which are all identified areas of cooperation under the partnership.
Meanwhile, the ASA Summit represents a platform for the Heads of State and Government from the two regions to create a united front in promoting a sustainable framework for achieving peace and security as well as the consolidation of democracy, governance and social justice in the interest of the two parties. Amongst the ideas proposed by the Heads of State during the Summit is the creation and putting in place of a secretariat to enable a smooth and effective implementation of the Africa- South America Cooperation.