May 19, 2000

UCSD Borders, Boundaries & New Frontiers Symposium on May 26 to Focus on Fashion, Art, Music, Border Crossing

The Symposium on Borders, Boundaries, and New Frontiers, focusing on fashion, art, music, and border crossing, will be held at the University of California, San Diego on May 26. 2000. The symposium, sponsored by the African and African-American Studies Research Project (AAASRP), will be held from 12 to 6:30 p.m. in Galleries A and B of the Price Center. The symposium is free and open to the public.

The symposium, which will feature a stellar line-up of international scholars, will explore the ways in which artistic, conceptual, and social projects reflect and shape intervals of border crossing and cultural movement. A focal point of the discussions will be high fashion and street fashion, creolization, and popular culture as expressions of border crossing.

According to sociologist Bennetta Jules-Rosette, coordinator of AASRP and the organizer of the symposium, the event marks the second section of a three-part sequence which began with the Blues-and-Border Workshop in February of this year and will continue into the 2000-2001 academic year. Scholars participating in the May 26 symposium include: Hudita Mustafa, Harvard University, author of the new book "Practicing Beauty," who will present a talk on African fashion models in Africa and abroad; Didier Gondola, Indiana University, a specialist on African youth culture, who will discuss the aesthetics of B-Boy fashion and music in the Congo and in France; and Francoise, UC Berkeley, who will talk about island youth culture and music in Mauritius and Réunion. Following the presentation, AAASRP board members will lead a rountable discussion which will be followed by a screening of the film "Carte d'Identité" by Congolese filmmaker Mweze Ngangura.

The symposium, which will introduce social and cultural issues involved in border crossings that will be pursued throughout next year's activities, will be followed by an awards presentation for San Diego youth who have written essays on blues-and-border music and UCSD African Studies students who have written outstanding research papers.

AAASRP's mission is to promote research and intellectual understanding of the issues that face African-Americans and African diaspora populations today from different perspectives in the arts, humanities, and the social sciences. The project sponsors academic research, public events, and other outreach activities that bring together diverse groups of people, both to foster a comparative and interdisciplinary environment and to share information and exchange scholarly ideas on these topics. For more information about this year's programs, call 858.822.0265.

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