Our pre-conference engagements in the form of topical discussion forums in line with the PAYC 2022 theme

About Tangaaza

Following a successful inaugural edition of the Pan-African Youth Conference (PAYC), PAYC participants and organizers realized the need to keep these critical conversations going to continue fostering understanding of Africa’s developmental challenges especially outside the conference set-up.

Consequently, the PAYC 2022 organizing team will host pre-conference engagements in the form of topical discussion forums in line with the PAYC 2022 theme (See appendix).

These sessions will be called Tangaaza, a Kiswahili word for enlightenment to reflect our goal of connecting, conscientizing and organizing.


  1. To consolidate the PAYC network through close, sustained engagement.
  2. To create space for discussion of topics related to the conference theme, but which will

not be discussed within the committees at the conference.

  1. To rally people, mobilize and recruit participants for the forthcoming conference.
  2. To sustain the momentum of the conference even outside the conference

What will be discussed at Tangaaza? 

The Theme for the Pan-African Youth Conference 2022 is “Which Way, Africa?” Understanding that Africa’s post-colonial experience has not yielded what was hoped for nor desired, our prerogative is to examine where we are headed given the unique circumstances of our time. To do this, we will problematize modernity as a paradigm of political, economic, and cultural development in the three constituent committees of the Conference, viz Political Governance, Socioeconomic Transformation, and Culture & Identity. In each of these committees, the idea of development will be liberated from the dominant assumptions that underlie it in order to open up new possibilities and imaginaries for what is possible as a development path in Africa. Development here is used to mean the improvement of Africa’s present political, socioeconomic, and cultural condition.


In order to deal with the state of contemporary Africa and its futurity, it is essential to understand how post-colonial, contemporary Africa came to be. The postcolonial order was shaped in part by the visions of Africa’s independence leaders, visions of Nationalism and Modernity. Nationalism was used as an ideological tool to mobilize Africans against the colonial state. Modernity was forwarded as the vision of development, the promise of independence. It is therefore imperative that we examine these forces and how they have shaped postcolonial Africa. 


Tangaaza will facilitate this understanding as a precursor to the Conference. This will prepare participants to engage in discussions on the state of contemporary Africa that will happen in the Committees. Tangaaza will be a series of five sessions. The first two sessions will focus exclusively on Nationalism and Modernity. Each of the remaining three sessions will focus on how Nationalism and Modernity shaped contemporary Africa politically, economically and culturally.


Schedule of Tangaaza

Tangaaza will comprise discussion forums held biweekly in the months leading to PAYC 2022. A total of five discussion forums will be held between February 12 to March 12 2022. The discussion forums will be co-hosted by PAYC and the Program of African Studies (PAS) at Northwestern University. Below is the tentative schedule for Tangaaza: 


Date February 12, 2022 February 19, 2022 February 26, 2022 March 5, 2022 March 12, 2022
Topic Nationalism Modernity The Politics of the Post-Colony The Culture of the Post-Colony The Socioeconomics of the Post-Colony

Format of the Tangaaza discussion forums

  • The discussion forums will run for 1h30 every other Saturday at 11AM ET.
  • The proposed structure is: Lecture + Facilitated break-out rooms + Large group discussion/Q&A.
  • An article will be disseminated a week prior to the discussion. This reading will form the basis of the discussion and will be provided by the guest speaker.

The guest speaker will provide a 30-minute lecture based on the topic which will be followed by an open discussion within the audience.

Contact Us

African Students' Association, University of Notre Dame, 46556, IN