African dress competition part of Africa Day celebrations

24 May 2010

Deputy vice-chancellor Prof Thandabantu Nhlapo with his wife, MathokozaEye-catching: Deputy vice-chancellor Prof Thandabantu Nhlapo with his wife, Mathokoza, at last year's Africa Day celebrations.

Don your most eye-catching African attire on 25 May - Africa Day - get a colleague to take a picture for a university-wide competition, and you and your photographer could each be R1 000 richer.

The competition is part of UCT's Celebrating Africa programme of events, lectures, exhibitions and discussions that celebrate our African heritage, UCT's growing connections with other African universities, and the university's commitment to shaping the continent's future.

The best picture will be judged later by a panel. Alas, the R1 000 prize for best-dressed does not increase for group photos. There should also be evidence that the picture was taken on 25 May, between 08h30 and 21h00. Entries should be sent to Nan Warner at the International Academic Programmes Office.

Africa Day also offers many other events. At 12h30, there will be a panel discussion on The State of Democracy in Africa: Advance or retreat? with Professor Robert Mattes, the director of the Democracy in Africa Research Unit of the Centre for Social Science Research at UCT, a co-director of the Afrobarometer survey of public opinion in 20 African countries, and a co-director of the African Legislatures Project; Professor Joel Barkan of the University of Iowa in the US, who has a long association with UCT and is co-director of the African Legislatures Project, as well as a senior consultant on governance for the World Bank; Professor Kwesi Prah, an Associate at Cambridge University's Centre for African Studies, and currently the director of the Centre for Advanced Studies of African Society in Cape Town, where he promotes a pan-African literacy movement as a way of increasing access to learning; and Dr Somadoda Fikeni, a consultant at the Human Sciences Research Council, chairperson of the Council of the Walter Sisulu University, and former chief operating officer of the National Heritage Council.

At 17h30 on the same day, Dr Marta Lahr, a Reader in Human Evolutionary Biology and the director of the Duckworth Collection at the University of Cambridge, will speak on African Origins and the Evolution of Diversity at the Vice-Chancellor's Open Lecture. Dr Lahr is a Fellow of Clare College and a co-founder of the Leverhulme Centre for Human Evolutionary Studies in Cambridge. Among her publications is The Evolution of Human Diversity.

From 21 to 26 May, IAPO will host an exhibition titled UCT Connections, highlighting many of UCT's dynamic linkages with other African institutions. Please visit the Leslie Social Sciences Building during this time and take part in the various activities. UCT faculties are also participating, and many will host their own events to celebrate Africa Day.

The UCT Connections exhibition, panel discussion and Vice-Chancellor's Open Lecture are part of the Celebrating Africa campaign, which UCT is undertaking in collaboration with Iziko Museums.

For details of venues and times of events please go here.

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