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IAS welcomes Dr. Harry Odamtten

The Institute of African Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon, is delighted to welcome Dr. Harry Nii Koney Odamtten as a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow. Dr. Odamtten, an Associate Professor of History at Santa Clara University, brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the institute. He earned a Dual Ph.D. in African American African Studies and History from Michigan State University (MSU) in 2010, following his Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Ghana, Legon, in 2001. His dedication to scholarship has been recognized through prestigious awards, such as the Compton Africa Award in 2009 and the Donald Lammers award for the 2010 History Ph.D. Graduating Class at MSU.

With a specialization in nineteenth and twentieth-century Global Black History, encompassing African, African-American, and African Diasporic histories, Dr. Odamtten is an intellectual and social historian with research interests spanning various regions, including Ghana, West Africa, the Caribbean (Cuba and St. Thomas), and Europe (Basel, Birmingham, and London), where he has conducted extensive field and archival research.

The Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program (CADFP) is a highly esteemed scholar fellowship program that supports educational projects at African higher education institutions. Dr. Odamtten's appointment as a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow exemplifies the program's commitment to advancing higher education in Africa. Funded by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY), the CADFP has awarded 566 fellowships since its inception in 2013, enabling scholars to travel to Africa and collaborate on meaningful projects. The CADFP is managed and administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE). IIE oversees the application process, project requests, and the distribution of fellowships, ensuring the program's smooth operation and successful outcomes.

Dr. Odamtten's contributions to the field of history are noteworthy. He serves as an editor of the Journal of West African History (JWAH) and has published extensively on African and African Diaspora intellectual and social history, African and African-American Gender and Women studies, Pan-Africanism, Hip-Hop, and Public Culture. Among his notable works are "Edward W. Blyden's Intellectual Transformations: Afropublicanism, Pan-Africanism, Islam, and the Indigenous West African Church" (2019) and "Hip Hop and Pan-Africanism" in the Routledge Handbook of Pan-Africanism (2020). He has also contributed to the Journal of Women History with his article "Dode Akabi: A Re-examination of the Oral and Textual Narratives of a Female King" (2015) and is currently working on the forthcoming Cambridge History of African Political Thought.

The Institute of African Studies at the University of Ghana is honoured to have Dr. Harry Nii Koney Odamtten join its faculty as a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow from May 1 to July 27th, 2023. His extensive experience in research and his commitment to advancing African and African Diaspora studies will undoubtedly enrich the academic environment and contribute to the institute's mission of promoting excellence in African scholarship. While here at the institute, Dr. Odamtten will be working on the project, “An Indigenous History of Ghana/Program Review”