[Dear Africanist: We are writing to a cross section of people concerned about the future of African Studies in the United States to solicit suggestions …]
by Africa Research Group
Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
August 1, 1970
The mailing says we are writing to a cross section of people concerned about the future of African Studies in the United States to solicit suggestions for a revised edition of The Extended Family; the widely read critique of U.S. African Studies programs, prepared by our Group for initial distribution at last year's ASA meeting in Montreal. The mailing says in the last year, that pamphlet has gone through two printings and we now have a backlog of orders for a third; since last year's ASA meeting, we've received a number of criticisms, suggestions, as well as uncovered some errors which we want to correct; we have also unearthed some new material which deserves' wider circulation; consequently, we are going ahead with a revised edition. The mailing says to insure a high quality of accurate research, we would welcome your calling to our attention: 1. Factual errors in the original edition; 2. New or additional evidence of the complicity and cooperation among African Studies Centers and individual scholars and the various agencies of the U.S. government and the major international corporations; 3. Evidence or illustrations of the ways in which research about African peoples have been used to advance the interests of U.S. imperialism, fortify the status quo, or inform counterinsurgency efforts; 4. Assessments of the shifting strategies of U.S. governmental and non-governmental (ie. the foundations etc.) agencies in Africa; 5. Information or insights about efforts and obstacles to the elimination of institutionalized racism in the African studies 'profession'; 6. Information about the role or non-role played by Africanists and African Studies Centers on U.S. campuses during the recent national strike against the spreading war, racism, and repression. The mailing says our purpose in inviting your assistance is to sharpen and expand the critical evaluation of the uses and abuses of African studies; in the new edition, we expect to concentrate on the analysis of institutions and will most likely eliminate any listing of individuals; we are sure we could benefit by your suggestions, critical comments, and help; if you desire, your replies will be treated in confidence. The mailing discusses the African Studies Association.
Used by permission of Danny Schechter, Sam Barnes and Robert Maurer, former members of Africa Research Group.
Collection: William Minter Southern Africa Papers