Dr Natasha Shivji, a postdoctoral research associate in the African studies center and Political Science Department at Cambridge University, UK as well as the Director of the Institute of Research in Intellectual Histories of Africa (IRIHA) in Dar es Salaam, joined us for a public seminar engaging the core arguments within How Europe Underdeveloped Africa. The lecture was presented in a non-traditional way and began with questions from the audience which Shivji engaged and broke down into easy-to-understand concepts and analogies. This model of engagement and then input is unique for an academic context which traditionally involves an input or lecture followed by some questions and answers.
This lecture grounded much of the engagement following it during the program. Shivji’s iterations of imperialism and under-development as well as diverse understanding of different forms of development in different spaces was helpful for framing some of the questions young people would ask through the rest of the program in understanding the text for today’s activist context.