MAAAS 2009 Preliminary Program

University of Tulsa, Oklahoma

9-10 October, 2009



5:30 PM A special screening of Taking Root, The Vision of Wangari Maathai, sponsored by Up With Trees, the Tulsa Global Alliance, the University of Tulsa, and Tulsa Community College, at the Circle Cinema (12 S. Lewis Ave., Tulsa OK 74104).

Planting trees for fuel, shade, and food is not something that anyone would imagine as the first step toward winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Yet with that simple act Wangari Maathai, a woman born in rural Kenya, started down the path that reclaimed her country’s land from 100 years of deforestation, provided new sources of food and income to rural communities, gave previously impoverished and powerless women a vital political role in their country, and ultimately helped to bring down Kenya's twenty-four-year dictatorship. Taking Root weaves a compelling and dramatic narrative of one woman's personal journey in the context of the turbulent political and environmental history of her country.

The film will screen at 5:30 pm at the Circle Cinema, and will be followed by a special reception, discussion of the film, and performance by dancers from the TU Angolan Student Association.

Tickets are $20, and proceeds from this event will benefit the Greenbelt Movement.

Circle Cinema is an historic Tulsa theater that uses film to foster understanding and appreciation of the diversity of the human experience, and create community among the viewers. The theater was opened in 1928 and is an important part of the Tulsa arts community by showing documentaries, independent and foreign films.


9-10 AM  Registration – Second Floor Lobby, Allen Chapman Activity Center (ACAC)

10-10:30 AM  Formal Introductions – Chouteau, 2nd floor, ACAC

10:30-12:00 AM  Environment and Society in East Africa – Gallery, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Betty Harris, University of Oklahoma

  • Ginger Elliott-Teague, University of Oklahoma, “Public” Interests and the Development of Tanzanian Environmental Policy
  • Willis Okech Oyugi, University of California Los Angeles, Human-Wildlife Conflicts in Kenya: Maasai Group Ranches and Wildlife Conservation
  • Cora Ann Presley, Georgia State University, Gender and Environmental Activism in Kenya: Wangari Maathi and Kenyan Women’s Activist Traditions

12:00-1:30 PM  Lunch featuring University of Tulsa and Tulsa Community College Student Poster  Session – Second Floor Lobby, ACAC

1:45-3:15 PM  African Environmental History – Chouteau, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Stephen Harmon, Pittsburg State University

  • David Bresnahan, Ohio University, The Language of the Land: Cultural Space and Environmental Change in Kenya’s Kaya Forests
  • Nathaniel Mathews, Northwestern University, An Environmental History of the Swahili Arab Impact in Eastern Congo, 1850-1900
  • Jeremy Rich, Middle Tennessee State University, Colonial Cages: Exotic Animal Suppliers in Gabon and North American Zoos, 1900-1920

3:30-5:00 PM  Remaking Ethnicity and National Identity in Africa – Gallery, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Rachel Reynolds, Drexel University

  • Erin Kenny, Drury University, Dununba Fête: Masculinity at a Guinean Festiva
  • Theo Randall, Indiana University South Bend, Ethnic Group Identity Transformation in West Afric
  • Shimantini Shome, University of Kansas, Integration of Somali Immigrants in the Kansas City Area

5:00-6:00  break

6:00-8:00 PM  Dinner and Plenary Presentation: James Igoe, Dartmouth University, Thinking About African Environments in the Context of our Current Ecological and Economic Crises


8:00-9:00 AM  Registration – Second Floor Lobby, ACAC

9-10:30 AM  Roundtable: International Faculty Development Seminars and the Council on International Educational Exchange – Chouteau, 2nd floor, ACAC

  • Lara Foley, University of Tulsa
  • Jay Gellar, University of Tulsa
  • Ryan Saylor, University of Tulsa

10:30-12 AM  Agriculture and the Environment in Contemporary Africa – Gallery, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Jamaine Abidogun, Missouri State University

  • Margaret Buckner, Missouri State University, Heading for Disaster: Cashews as Development in Guinea-Bissa
  • Betty J. Harris, University of Oklahoma, Wheat, Wine, and Water: Environmental Issues in South African Agriculture
  • Hussien Oumer, Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia, Land Use and Land Cover Change, Drivers and Its Impact: A Comparative Study from Kuhar Michael and Lenche of Blue Nile and Awash Basins of Ethiopia

12:00-1:30 PM  Lunch and business meeting – Chouteau, 2nd floor, ACAC

1:30-3 PM  Introducing Environmental Change into African Studies – Gallery, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Stephen Kandeh, University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

  • Abimbola Asojo, University of Oklahoma, Sustainable Strategies for Housing the Urban Poor: A Case Study of Lagos, Nigeria
  • Byron Caminero-Santangelo, University of Kansas, A Greening of African Literature
  • Semira Mekonnen Mekuria, Ethiopia, Effect of Grazing Land Exclosure and Feeding Strategies on Livestock Water Productivity in Lencha Dima Watershed, Guba Lafto Woreda, Amhara Region
  • Sterling Recker, University of Missouri Saint Louis, Villagization in Rwanda: An Analysis of Economic and Political Trends since Vision 2020

3:15-5:15 PM  Environment, Politics, and Culture in Contemporary Africa – Chouteau, 2nd floor, ACAC
Chair, Jeremy Rich, Middle Tennessee State University

  • Jamaine Abidogun, Missouri State University, Where is the African in the Science Curriculum?
  • Stephen Kandeh, University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, African Poverty: Assessing the Relationship between Foreign Aid and Development
  • Edward Manyibe, Langston University, Refugees with Disabilities in Africa: Rehabilitation Opportunities and Challenges
  • B. A. Oyeniyi, University of Ibadan, Nigeria, Cultural Practices, Environment and HIV/AIDS in Africa
  • Victor Ojakorotu, Monash University, South Africa, Nature’s Gift, Man’s Curse: Oil, Violence and Prospects for Peace in the Niger Delta of Nigeria