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News South Africa month

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University celebrates the nation's arts, culture throughout April

Multimedia art, musical and dance performances, lectures, and other activities are part of the University's monthlong celebration of South Africa and its culture.

The sights, sounds and tastes of South Africa come to the University of Delaware in a month-long celebration of the country.

Garth Erasmus, a multi-media artist from South Africa, joins the University community as an international visiting artist-in-residence.

Erasmus, who earned a master of fine arts degree from Rhodes University, is a painter whose work  was framed and seen as part of the anti-apartheid resistance movement in South Africa in the late 1980s. 

A socially engaged artist, he has also found other ways of aesthetic activism and political speech that include making soundscapes, sound implements and music, and creating art related to indigenous and post-apartheid realties. 

His work is represented in numerous collections, including the National Museum of African Art and the Smithsonian Institution.

In a joint collaboration between the Institute for Global Studies and the College of Arts and Sciences, the international visiting artist-in-residence will join the University for a month of artistic engagement to include instrument building workshops, seminars, performances and collaborations.

Events include a “Making Sound Instruments” workshop on Monday, April 13, a student lecture on South African Art on Tuesday, April 21, and a colloquium on “Intersecting Arts” on Tuesday, April 28.

Another signature event includes a lecture by UD’s Elaine Salo, associate professor of political science and international relations, as the second in UD’s inaugural Fulbright Lecture Series. 

Salo, a South African native, will reflect on her own experiences as a Fulbright scholar in the U.S. and the impact she believes that Fulbright has on women’s empowerment and higher education in South Africa.  The Fulbright lecture will be held at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 9, in Multipurpose Room C of the Trabant University Center as an addition to the College of Arts and Sciences Networking Night.

Members of the UD community are also invited to attend a special Office for International Students and Scholars International Coffee Hour on Friday, April 17, from 4-6 p.m. DJ Miles, a graduate student at UD, will spin South African music “from Kwela to Kwaito” as guests indulge in coffee, tea and organic conversation.

On Sunday and Monday, April 19 and 20, U.S. artists from Lynnette Overby’s production of “Dave the Potter” and visiting South African artists will participate in a workshop for the multi-disciplinary performance that will explore similarities and differences between South Africa and the United States.  A performance based upon their collaborative efforts will take place in November. Overby is professor of theatre at UD.

In addition, members of the UD community can enjoy South African music and dance during “Cultural Crossroads” performances from noon-1 p.m. on Thursday, April 9 (Tumi Nkomo and UD dancers), Tuesday, April 21 (Kesivan Naidoo on drums), and Wednesday, April 29 (the Colin Miller Quartet). 

Prior to her April 9 performance, Nkomo, a South African choreographer, will host a morning dance workshop for UD dance minors from 9:30-11 a.m. in 160 Carpenter Sports Building, also known as the “Little Bob.”

“Cultural Crossroads” takes its name not only from its designation as a pop-up performance venue, but also from its geographic location as a series of walkways intersecting three key cultural locations on campus -- Mechanical Hall, home of the Paul R. Jones Collection of African American Art; Jastak-Burgess Hall, home of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures; and Elliott Hall, home of the University’s study abroad program.

The month-long celebration culminates in a faculty workshop on Thursday, April 30, “Developing Online Education Opportunities with UNISA” in the Faculty Commons. 

Faculty with an interest in global engagement are invited to register for what promises to be an inspiring and engaging workshop on developing online learning opportunities with the University of South Africa (UNISA), “Africa's leading open distance learning institution.


andla Makhanya, UNISA professor and vice chancellor, will opens the program with a brief history and modern-day role of a university that is “proudly African in the service of humanity.” Participants will hear from three UD faculty members who are putting online learning into practice, before engaging in activities to further their own potential collaborative efforts with UNISA. 

Space is limited for this event co-sponsored by IGS, Academic Technology Services, Center for Teaching and Assessment of Learning and Professional and Continuing Studies.

Attendees at all South Africa Month events will be treated to UDairy Creamery’s latest confection -- South African Tea with Honey -- a delicious ice cream containing Rooibos (Ru-oy-bos) tea and chocolate covered bits of honeycomb.  

About the Institute for Global Studies

The Institute for Global Studies was created in 2009 to enhance the international dimensions of teaching, research and outreach at the University of Delaware. IGS provides leadership and support for programs and experiences that contribute to the education of informed, skilled, open-minded citizens of the world. 

Best known for coordinating the University’s study abroad program, IGS also awards scholarships and grants to faculty and students for global travel and research, administers internationally-recognized programs such as the MEPI (Middle East Partnership Initiative) Student Leaders Institute, and sponsors such signature events as International Education Week each fall and country-specific celebrations each spring. 

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Garth Erasmus, a multimedia artist from South Africa, joins the UD community during April's celebration of South Africa as an international visiting artist-in-residence.

The sights, sounds and tastes of South Africa have come to the University of Delaware this April for a monthlong celebration of the country, including visiting international artist-in-residence Garth Erasmus.

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