African Culture Week

Oct. 15, 2012 

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Illinois Wesleyan University will present "Explore Africa 2012," a series of events to celebrate African Culture Week, which begins Oct. 29 and ends on Nov. 4. The week is devoted to films, speakers and programs that educate the IWU community about African culture, traditions and social issues.

The events, which are free and open to the public, are sponsored by the African Studies Team and the African Students Association and friends of these organizations.

"Many of us do not know very much about Africa and Africans except the horror stories we get in the news," said Associate Professor of Anthropology Rebecca Gearhart. "The week is dedicated to exposing the campus to contemporary African issues such as the experiences African refugees have in the United States."

The schedule of events for the week is listed below:

Tuesday, Oct. 16
Film: Dear Mandela - 7 p.m. in the Beckman Auditorium in The Ames Library
 (1 Ames Plaza, Bloomington) - After the film, there will be a question and answer session with the film's director, Dara Kell, and Zodwa Nsibande and Mnikelo Ndabankulu, leaders of the South African Shack Dwellers Movement. The event is co-sponsored by the Political Science Department.

Tuesday, Oct. 30
"Uncovering Truth about the DRC: Displacement at Home and Abroad" - 7 p.m. in the Beckman Auditorium in The Ames Library - Members of the local Congolese community and the local organization, One Heart for Congo, will discuss the ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo and share their experiences as refugees in the Midwest. This event is co-sponsored by IWU Student Senate.

Thursday, Nov. 1
"Lost and Found: Sudanese Refugees in the United States" - 4 p.m. in the Beckman Auditorium in The Ames Library - Peter Magai Bul, Maketh Bul Mabior and John Dut Kuol will share their experiences as "Lost Boys" in a Kenyan refugee camp, as students and employees in Chicago and as leaders of development organizations that assist their communities in the Republic of South Sudan. The event is co-sponsored by the Provost's Office & the Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

African Drumming by Firelight – 6 p.m. at the Memorial Center Cabana (104 E. University St., Bloomington) - Join the Anthropology Club and the African Students Association for a night of drumming. Drums will be provided but feel free to bring your own if you have one.

Film: God Grew Tired of Us – 7 p.m. in the Beckman Auditorium in The Ames Library – There will be question and answer session after the film with the "Lost Boys," Peter, Maketh and John.

Sunday, November 4
• African Culture Night - 6 p.m. in the Hansen Student Center, Center Court (300 Beecher St., Bloomington) - The African Students Association will present "A Slice of Africa," an evening of African cuisine, music and dance, fashion, and entertainment.

For additional information about African Culture Week, contact Rebecca Gearhart at

Contact: Katherine Filippo, '12, (309) 556-3181