ACAS expresses concern at Zanzibar election annulment, November 2015

11 November 2015

ACAS Executive expresses its concern at the Zanzibar election annulment, and agrees with the sentiments of a group of scholars of Zanzibar as below. (see link to full statement and initial signatories)


1 November 2015
We, as concerned scholars of Zanzibar, write to express our dismay at recent events
following the elections of 25 October 2015.
We continue to be deeply thankful for the repeated opportunities afforded us by the
Government of Zanzibar to study, document, and try to understand the lives of Zanzibaris
– their complexity and inventiveness, their countless achievements, and the challenges
they face.
Our work – our research, writing, and analyses of history, culture, geography and
language – has given us a firm appreciation for the people of Zanzibar. Treating us with
enormous generosity and patience, they have repeatedly taught us the value of community,
hospitality, and perseverance.
In our many combined years of listening to and learning from Zanzibaris about so many
aspects of their lives, we have consistently been struck by their decency, kindness, and
their remarkable ability to meet adversity with grace and good humor. Today we extend
our deepest gratitude to them. And we beseech the Governments of Zanzibar and of the
United Republic of Tanzania to honor their commitment to multi-party democracy and to
keep all of their citizens well and free from harm.
We present this statement in the hope that both the Government of Zanzibar and the
Government of the United Republic of Tanzania will reassert their belief in democracy’s
core values; that they will resolve this crisis with wisdom and humility; and that security
organs will exercise restraint and good judgment, prioritizing at all times the safety,
dignity and rights of the people with whose protection they are charged.

Amnesty Urgent Action Alert: Mozambique: Drop All Charges Against Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco & Fernando Mbanze

22 July 2015

Urgent Action Alert: Mozambique: Drop All Charges Against Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco and Fernando Mbanze (UA 162/15…

Urgent Action July 21, 2015
Economist Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco and newspaper editor Fernando Mbanze have been charged with crimes against the security of the state in relation to a Facebook post on poor governance in Mozambique. Their trial begins on 3 August.
1) Please write immediately in English, Portuguese or your own language:


Minister of Justice, Constitutional and Religious Affairs
Abduremane Lino de Almeida
Ministry of Justice
Av. Julius Nyerere, 33
Republic of Mozambique
Fax: 011 25821494264 and 011 25821487853
Salutation: A sua Excelência
General Prosecutor of Mozambique
Beatriz da Consolação Mateus Buchili
Office of the General Prosecutor
Av. Vladimir Lenine, 121
Republic of Mozambique
Salutation: Exma. Dra.
Also send copies to:
Ambassador Amélia Matos Sumbana, Embassy of the Republic of Mozambique
1525 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington DC 20036
Phone: 1 202 293-7146 I Fax: 1 202 835 0245 I Email:


19 May 2015


As members of the North Eastern Workshop on Southern Africa (NEWSA) and scholars of African Studies, we are deeply distressed by ongoing injustices in Swaziland. These include the current crisis engulfing the Swazi judiciary, the conditions of political prisoners such as PUDEMO President Mario Masuku, Human Rights Lawyer Thulani Maseko, SWAYOCO Secretary General Maxwell Dlamini, Nation Magazine Editor Bheki Makhubu, MK and ANC cadre Amos Mbedzi and PUDEMO stalwart Zonke Dlamini, as well as the intensified persecution of political and civil society activists and trade unions. We express particular concern about the worsening health conditions of PUDEMO President Mario Masuku, who was recently hospitalized in relation to his poor prison conditions. Masuku’s alleged crime is calling for that which is already enjoyed in many parts of the world: the right for the people to elect a government of their choosing in a free and democratic environment.

We call for the release of all political prisoners in Swaziland and express our support for several movements campaigning for democracy in Swaziland, including the People’s United Democratic Movement, the Swaziland Youth Congress, the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland, South Africa Lawyers for Human Rights, Southern Africa Litigation Centre’s, and the Congress of South African Trade Union’s Global Coalition for the Release of Swazi Political and Civil Rights Prisoners.

May 19, 2015

ACAS News @ACASNews on Twitter

4 May 2015

Follow Association of Concerned Africa Scholars ACAS on Twitter @



Urgent action to end xenophobic attacks in South Africa

17 April 2015

“We call for urgent action to end the xenophobic attacks in South Africa. The undersigned represent members of the North Eastern Workshop on Southern Africa, the African Studies Association, the African Studies Association Women’s Caucus, the Association of Concerned African Scholars, and the US-Africa Network. As scholars and activists, we know that this violence directed at “strangers” defies a long history of exchange, migration, and solidarity in the region—especially during the anti-apartheid movement. As friends and family members of southern Africans, we worry about the safety of many who are close to us. And as human beings, we are shocked and heartbroken to see this violence continue. We therefore urge President Zuma’s administration to bring this violence to an end, and to foster policy that prevents such violence in the future.”

ACTION: Please email Meghan Healy-Clancy at with your name, title, and affiliation to sign the petition.

ACAS Review: Tribute to Terence O. Ranger

8 April 2015

April 8, 2015 

Tribute to Terence O. Ranger (29 November 1929 – 3 January 2015) View PDF:


Tribute to Terence O. Ranger (29 November 1929 – 3 January 2015) View PDF:

An Association of Concerned Africa Scholars (ACAS) Tribute to Terence O. Ranger (29 November 1929 – 3 January 2015)

Compiled by Timothy Scarnecchia, Teresa Barnes, and Peter Limb

April 8, 2015

This special ACAS Review pays tribute to Terence O. Ranger who passed on January 3, 2015, just after midnight just past his 86th Birthday. We sent out a call for tributes in January. We also know that Terry’s students, as well as the Editorial Board of the Journal of Southern African Studies, and the members of the British Zimbabwe Society will be producing their own tributes. We at ACAS who worked and knew Professor Ranger wanted to add our small contribution by focusing here on his role as an activist scholar.

This Review includes tributes, recollections, and comments from many who knew and worked with Professor Ranger. It also includes a Bibliography of his publications, with permission from Weaver Press in Harare and, as appendices:

Appendix A: Terence Ranger, “Remarks at Bestowal of Distinguished Africanist Award from the African Studies Association (U.S.) (2009)

Appendix B: Terence Ranger’s 2008 expert testimony in an asylum case for a Zimbabwean.

Call for tributes: Terence Ranger

18 January 2015

Terence Ranger was a giant of African Studies, active in support of African liberation, and long-term advocate for asylum rights. If you knew him, or were touched by his work, please consider sending us a reflection or remembrance; and by all means share this call with colleagues and faculty. 

The Association of Concerned African Scholars (ACAS, founded in 1977 by scholars to organize scholarly analysis and action toward moving U.S. policy in directions more sympathetic to African interests), and the Zambezi African Studies Association, are putting together a tribute publication of ACAS Review and Blog celebrating the life and work of Terence O. Ranger who passed away peacefully on January 2, 2015. Teresa Barnes, Peter Limb, and Tim Scarnecchia would appreciate you sending your tribute/reflection piece/remembrance to us by January 30th or soon thereafter.  Terry Ranger touched the lives and helped advance the careers of many students and scholars around the world, and his work contributed to the development of a counter-narrative to Eurocentric African studies, so we would like to hear from you and also ask that you share this invitation with others who you think would like to write something for this ACAS Review and blog. Please send your writing to either <<>> or<> by January 30th 2015

ACAS receives 2014 African Studies Association Public Service Award

23 November 2014

The Association of Concerned African Scholars (ACAS) is honored and delighted to receive the 2014 African Studies Association Public Service Award, which was delivered at the ASA awards ceremony held on the evening of Saturday, November 22nd 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (see )

Co-chairs Terri Barnes and Peter Limb received the award on behalf of ACAS, and during the ceremony ACAS was described as the “conscience of ASA”.

We thank all ACAS members past and present who contributed to this recognition and trust it will be a spur to ongoing work for peace and social justice in Africa and the U.S., and relations between the peoples.

ACAS Membership Form 2014-2015

17 November 2014

Association of Concerned Africa Scholars (ACAS)

Membership Form 2014-2015

(ACAS will not share your personal information with any other organizations or persons)










Phone #:_____________________________________E-Mail:_________________________________________


Africa Activist Scholarly and Country Interests:___________________________________________




May we forward your scholarly and activist interests to the press as a contact?_______


Would you like to join an ACAS Task Force?


_________Militarization in Africa and AFRICOM

_________Food sovereignty

_________Land grabs



Please identify other ways you might like to be involved in ACAS:


_________Write an article in the ACAS Bulletin about__________________

_________Serve on the ACAS Board of Directors


ACAS Membership Status:


New member:______________                     Renewal:___________________


Current ASA Member: Yes:_______       No:_______


Membership Fee: $10.00 per year (September-August)


Please return with a check payable to:

Association of Concerned Africa Scholars” (not tax deductable)


Mail to: Michael Walker, ACAS Treasurer

538 Pacific Street, Apt 5-6

Brooklyn, NY 11217-2280

ACAS Statement on US Reactions to the Outbreak of Ebola in West Africa

3 November 2014

ACAS Statement on US Reactions to the Outbreak of Ebola in West Africa

29 October, 2014

The Association of Concerned Africa Scholars (ACAS) urges that all Americans and their public representatives and organizations support the efforts to eradicate Ebola in the West African countries of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, and adhere to scientific standards in addressing the threats of the spread of the disease in the US. Ebola is a highly infectious disease with a very particular footprint. We are currently seeing it cruelly ravage some of the poorest populations on Earth. In West Africa, estimates are that there has been a 70% fatality rate. However, Ebola is a public health emergency like other emergencies. It can be successfully combatted through basic, stringently observed public health safety measures, and the odds of survival of patients with Ebola can be greatly improved with thorough and compassionate medical care.

We also urge American public officials and private individuals to educate themselves about this disease in order not to fall prey to fear-mongering and the furthering of racist stereotyping. The US mass media too often portrays Ebola along the lines of a horror film rather than reporting on it soberly and accurately. Instead, we know that the US health system, while flawed, is perfectly able to treat and isolate any cases of Ebola that might come to our shores. The public health and hospital systems of West Africa are sadly, very weak, for a whole host of historical reasons. Even so, the compassion that is often shown by people there with very few resources puts the small-mindedness of many Americans to shame. We can learn valuable lessons from people in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia about how to handle the emotional and physical stresses that are laid on individuals and communities when they are faced with a devastating viral episode like Ebola.

We deplore the ignorance and insensitivity that has led some Americans to try to bar people from any part of Africa from public spaces like schools and restaurants because of a supposition that all Africans are infected with Ebola.

Finally, we acknowledge and salute those medical personnel who have put themselves in harm’s way to work with West African governments, charities, churches and civil society organizations to address the Ebola outbreak. They should be treated with respect and dignity and their constitutional rights must be upheld upon their return to the US.

Association of Concerned Africa Scholars: