Prof. Sanga wins a prestigious fellowship at Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin

Thu, 27.Jun.2024 11.06

By Special Correspondent, CMU

Prof. Imani Sanga, a professor of Music in the Department of Creative Arts, College of Humanities at the University of Dar es Salaam has won a prestigious research fellowship at Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin – Institute for Advanced Study (WIKO) for the academic year 2024-2025 beginning in Mid-August 2024.

According to the information received, while at the Institute (WIKO) Prof. Sanga will conduct research and work to complete his book project entitled Sonic Letters, Decolonial Acts: Musical Figures, Swahili Literature, and Anti-imperialist Struggles in Tanzania.

“This fellowship enables me to take a sabbatical leave and use it to focus entirely on my research work. It will also enable me to work while in a company of many great scholars in various academic disciplines and artistic fields coming from around the world”, said Prof. Sanga, citing the letter of invitation.

At Wissenschaftskolleg, each year about 45 ellows from all over the world live and work together, some of them are joined by their families. Most of the fellows wok in the humanities, or the social sciences. It is the place where fellows also meet with people further removed from academic contexts: composers, journalists, film or theater directors, or diplomats.

Prof. Sanga is a researcher, composer, conductor, instrumentalist and music arranger and who is “following the footsteps of two outstanding scholars of music in Tanzania who at different times were fellows at WIKO: Anna Maria Busse Berger and Kelly Askew”.

“Berger is a distinguished Professor of Music at the University of California, Davis and author of The Search for Medieval Music in Africa and Germany, 1891-1961: Scholars, Singers, Missionaries, who was a WIKO fellow in 2015/2016”, said Prof. Sanga.

He added that, Kelly Askew, is a Professor of Anthropology and African Studies at the University of Michigan, who is an Arbor and author of Performing the Nation: Swahili Music and Cultural Politics in Tanzania who was a fellow at WIKO in 2012/2013.

“A previous fellow at this institute from Tanzania is a historian Prof. Abdul Sheriff who was at WIKO in the academic year 2002-2003”, he said.

A Keynote address at Makerere

In August, 2023 Prof. Sanga participated in the 6th Mashariki (Eastern African) Literary and Cultural Studies International Conference held at Makerere University, Uganda and delivered a keynote address that enthused many participants.

At the conference, which was held from 24 to 26 August 2023 and organised by the Department of Literature, Makerere University, Prof. Sanga delivered a keynote address on “Sonification of Decolonial Acts in Selected Swahili Novels by Adam Shafi: Vuta N’Kuvute and Kasri ya Mwinyi Fuad”.