Re-envisioning the African and American Academies

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This book is a true masterpiece from one of the preeminent minds in higher education today. […]
By looking across Africa and the United States in the periods before and after Covid, […].
— Ben Vinson III, President, Howard University, Washington DC, USA

In Re-envisioning the African and American Academies, Paul Tiyambe Zeleza presents a thought-provoking analysis of the state of higher education in African and American institutions, with the Covid-19 pandemic as an inflection point. […].
— Tshilidzi Marwala, Rector, United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan

Re-envisioning the African and American Academies is a seminal book for researchers, practitioners, leaders and students in wanting to interrogate and understand the state of higher education in Africa and the United States in a post-Covid world. […].

— Fanta Aw, PhD, CEO and Executive Director, NAFSA

[…], Zeleza undertakes a stringent critique of the neoliberal university and proposes concrete recommendations on how to reform and restructure the contemporary university in the world. Superb! A must-read.
— Adam Habib, Director, SOAS, University of London, England

From an academic’s and a practitioner’s perspective, Paul Zeleza intricately examines the trajectories of the development of higher education systems on two continents, with universal applicability. […].
— Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, Vice Chancellor, University of Ghana

[…]. Zeleza provides us a courageous roadmap to re-envision the African and American academies[…].
— Catherine Koverola, Director, Center for African Studies, USA


This is an exceptionally comprehensive, rich and highly textured study of higher education in two regions that are rarely compared to each other, Africa and the United States written by a scholar with an unusually extensive experience with both systems. The book examines the development of higher education in the two regions focusing on the period since 2000. Divided into eight chapters, it opens with an expansive scrutiny of the exponential growth of universities in Africa and the persistent struggles for epistemic decolonisation and ends with an incisive investigation of the protracted battles over affirmative action in the United States. The chapters in between provide fascinating and insightful comparative analyses on several key issues and events since the turn of the century. Throughout, the book places trends and trajectories of higher education in the two regions in a global context given Africa’s deep insertion into the world system, America’s outsize influence over it and the entangled transnational dynamics of intellectual, ideological, and institutional flows.

ISBN 978 2 38234 101 8

Paul Tiyambe Zeleza is a renowned scholar of African economic and intellectual history, diaspora, gender, human rights and cultural studies, fields in which he has published about 30 books and hundreds of essays. Several of his books have won international awards. He is also a novelist and short-story writer. He is an honorary professor at the University of Cape Town and Nelson Mandela University and has received prestigious fellowships at Harvard University.

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