TOFAC 2019 Call for Papers_UPDATED

Olajumoke Yacob-Haliso's picture
Subject Fields: 
African History / Studies, Area Studies, Humanities, Political History / Studies, Social Sciences

The 9th Toyin Falola Annual International Conference on Africa and the African Diaspora (TOFAC 2019)





Venue: Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Ogun State, Nigeria

Date: July 1-3, 2019 (arrival, June 30; departure, July 4th)

Abstract Submission Open Now, Deadline: 01 April 2019


This conference will examine all the major narratives and theories of religion and politics produced by scholars and policy-makers over the years. It will encourage intellectual collaboration and production from within and/or focused on Africa and the African Diaspora. It will also contribute to contemporary discourse on religion, the State, and Global Politics, in order to illuminate Africa’s position in global religions, international policy, and national development and identity formation. Participants are expected to critically question and hopefully set aside misleading representations and narratives on African religious experience.

In the past, scholars of African religion and politics have engaged topics such as missionary activities, colonialism, and the spread of religion in Africa, as well as questions of cultural survival or defeat. In Western societies, policies and narratives regarding religion are often produced under the assumption that the Church and the State remain fundamentally and ideologically separate. Meanwhile, the connections between religion and state are becoming increasingly relevant worldwide. The global community is being confronted with violent terrorism, which is often tied to organized religion, wrongly or rightly by the media, the State, and international government and non-governmental organizations. Therefore, in the contemporary geopolitical landscape, state policymakers and scholars of politics, state formation, international relations, and globalization can hardly ignore issues of religion, raising questions of religious freedom, tolerance, violence, and oppression. In light of the oversimplified, popular rhetoric surrounding religion and state policy, scholars and policymakers are tasked to think conceptually and empirically about the role of religion in the state and in international affairs. 

Whereas Western scholarship has necessarily focused on the tensions between religions and secularisms at the State and international level, and on producing responses to religious terrorist movements such as ISIS and Boko Haram, there is also the need to explore alternative indigenous religions and spiritualities in Africa and the African Diaspora, to uncover local expressions and practices of religion in Africa and their impact on State policy, social organization, and/or global connections, and to analyze recent developments by African states to foster or hamper religious movements and understandings in Africa. It is also useful to consider the Diasporic movement of religious ideas and practices across national boundaries. Approaching these issues from within the African and African Diasporic context, it is important to reconsider hegemonic understandings of religion, as well as hegemonic understandings of nationalism, policy, and development.

The conference will attempt to push the boundaries of Western epistemology and engage African knowledge as a means of working through popular assumptions and contentious debates about the past, present, and future of Africa, African religions, spiritualities, and secularisms, and the connections between local, national, and global politics. While many participants will present in English, we encourage presentations in other languages, most notably in Ajami, Arabic, and French.

A cross-disciplinary approach is necessary for understanding the entanglement of religion, the State, and global politics in Africa and the African Diaspora. Therefore, this conference welcomes paper submissions from a variety of disciplines, including but not limited to history, political science, sociology, religious studies, philosophy, economics, international relations, peace and conflict studies, literary and cultural studies, communication and language studies, education, management sciences, and area studies. We encourage scholars, activists, politicians, policy makers, and other contributors to the conference to consider the following sub-themes:


African and African Diasporic Religions

African and African Diasporic Religious Art, Music and Performance

African and African Diasporic Religious Knowledge

African and African Diasporic Religious Leaders

African and African Diasporic Religious Philosophy

Children in Religion

Christian and Islamic Bodies

Colonialism and Religion in Africa

Comparative case studies in religion and the state

Contemporary Youth Cultures

Continuity, Change, and Survival Strategies

Ecumenical Exchanges and Interactions

Expressions and Practices of Spirituality

Global Religions in Local Context/Local Religions in Global Context

Globalization and Religion

History of Religion in Africa and/or the African Diaspora


Law and Religions

Law, Politics, and Religions

Literary Studies

Local Politics in Global Context/Global Politics in Local Context

Masculine Spiritualities/Feminine Spiritualities

Methodological Approaches to the Study of Religion in Africa

Nationalism and Religion in Africa

Plural Secularisms/Plural Religions

Political Theology

Post colonialism and Religion in Africa

Private Faiths, Public Religions

Private Politics, Public Policies

Recent Policy Changes on Religion in Africa

Religion and Empowerment

Religion and Ethics

Religion and Gender

Religion and Human Rights

Religion and Judicial Systems

Religion and Languages

Religion and Literary Expressions (Poetry/Prose/Drama)

Religion and Migration in Africa and the African Diaspora

Religion and Modernity

Religion and Nollywood

Religion and Poverty

Religion and Security issues

Religion and Terrorism

Religion and the Multimedia (musicals, films, etc)

Religion and the Social Media

Religion and Theories of the State in Africa

Religion and Violent Groups (e.g., ISIS, Boko Haram, The Lord’s Resistance Army, etc)

Religion and World Civilizations: Architecture; Art/Visual Art; Science and Technology

Religion and Youth Culture (e.g., Islamic Religious Culture: (Aid groups, musical ensembles, Muslim Students' Society, NACOMYO, Da'awa, etc.)

Religion as Identity Politics

Religion in African Schools and Universities

Religions, Race and other Identities

Religious Connections in the African Diaspora

Religious Conversion Mechanisms

Religious Culture in Africa

Religious Literatures

Religious, State, and Global Human Rights Movements

Religious/Political Freedom in Africa

Religious/Political Oppression in Africa

Religious/Political Pacifism in Africa

Religious/Political Violence in Africa

Slavery, Religion, and Politics

State Policy on Religion

State Secularism

The Vatican and Global Politics

Theocracy and Global Democracy

Transnational Religious Organizations

Other relevant topics



Submission is open now. Proposals for paper presentations, panels and/or performances should include a 150-200-word abstract and title, as well as the author's name, institutional affiliation/address, email address(es) and telephone number. All proposals for presentation and eventual publication must be the original work of the author/artist. The deadline for the submission of abstracts is April 1, 2019. All abstracts should be sent to and also copied to


A mandatory, non-refundable registration fee must be paid as soon as an abstract is accepted. The registration fee for Nigeria-based scholars will be N17,500 and N10,000 for graduate students, while all international participants will pay $100. This conference fee includes admission to all panels, conference materials, lunch and breaks, and the conference banquet. A late registration fee of N2,500 applies for any payments made after the close of registration, including for those who choose onsite payment.

Payment information

Nigeria-based participants are advised to pay registration fees into the following account and obtain a bank teller or receipt clearly showing the name of the conference participant and the amount paid.

Account Name: BU Veronica Adeleke School of Social Sciences

Account No: 1014485614

Bank: Zenith Bank

International participants are expected to pay in US Dollars. Those whose abstracts are accepted will receive information concerning payment method.

IMPORTANT DATES/DEADLINES: Below are the deadlines for each of the activities listed, showing the last day for intending participants to act:

Abstract Submission                                    01 April 2019

Notification of acceptance of Abstracts      30 April 2019

Registration & Payment                                31 May 2019

Late Registration begins                              1 June 2019

Arrival for conference                                 30 June 2019

Departure from conference                          04 July 2019

Full draft paper submission                          Pre-conference, 31 May 2019

Full corrected paper submission                             Post-conference, 05 August 2019


Hotel rates: Options for conference accommodation are of three types:

  1. Babcock student hostels, shared en-suite rooms, N2,000-N5,000/night
  2. Babcock Guest House (BGH), prices starting from N15,000/night
  3. Hotels in nearby towns (transportation provided), prices starting from N10,000/night

All prices listed above are subject to change. The Local Organizing Committee will communicate more detailed list of hotels and negotiated prices closer to the conference dates to persons whose abstracts have been accepted.

Airport Pick-Up: International participants will be picked up from the airport, while others from around the country will be provided with information concerning how to reach the University and hotels in later logistics updates.

Tourism: We are making arrangements to include a sight-seeing trip in the conference program, and will provide information ahead. Interested conference participants may be required to pay a small fee for logistical arrangements.

Other conference updates will be shared with participants as time goes on.


The research papers presented will be reviewed for publication by editorial teams. Accepted quality papers will form part of edited book series. Other chosen papers will also be recommended to special issues of relevant journals. It is expected that all publication processes will be completed within a year of the end of the conference, all things being equal.

LOCAL ORGANISING COMMITTEE (Details to be provided)

For enquiries, contact the following:

Contact Info: 

Olajumoke Yacob-Haliso, Babcock University


Contact Email: