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KNOXVILLE — A semester-long celebration of the ties between Africa and non-African nations kicks off this week at the University of Tennessee.

Students returning to campus for spring semester classes will find two exhibits that feature African art. Conferences, exhibits, concerts and guest speakers are scheduled throughout the semester.

“Images of Human Rights Portfolio,” an exhibit of art from South Africa, is now on display at the University Center Concourse. It will move to the College of Law building Feb. 1 and continue there through July.

A major exhibit of African art can be viewed at McClung Museum. Titled “The World Moves – We Follow: Celebrating African Art,” the McClung exhibit contains approximately 100 objects. It will be open through May 18.

The two exhibits and most other Africa Semester activities are free and open to the public.

Provost Loren Crabtree said Africa Semester activities are designed to recognize the traditions and culture of Africa and breakdown old stereotypes.

“It is my hope that at the end of the semester students, faculty, staff and the community will have much greater appreciation of modern Africa,” Crabtree said.

Amadou Sall said students enrolled for his African Studies class will be required to attend at least five Africa Semester events.

“They (students) will have to write at least one typed page about each event, telling how they liked it and what they learned. People are really looking forward to it.”

An international conference, “Cultures In Motion: The Africa Connection,” is scheduled Feb. 6-9. Scholars from around the world will attend and present scholarly papers, Dr. Carolyn Hodges, professor and head of modern languages and literatures, said.

Hodges and Dr. William Dewey, assistant professor of art, are co-chairs of Africa Semester. A calendar of events and other information is available at