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Mbah receives prestigious ACLS fellowship


Published May 9, 2019 This content is archived.

headshot of Ndubueze Mbah.

Ndubueze Mbah

Ndubueze Mbah, assistant professor of history, has been named a 2019 American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Centennial Fellow in the Dynamics of Place.

ACLS is the preeminent representative of American scholarship in the humanities and related social sciences.

Mbah is one of 81 scholars selected from among more than 1,100 applicants for a fellowship by the ACLS, a private, nonprofit federation of 75 national scholarly associations. Once selected, ACLS fellows receive awards ranging $40,000 to $70,000, depending on the scholar’s career stage, to support up to a year of full-time research and writing.

Mbah’s second book project, “Rebellious Migrants: Forging Cosmopolitan Identity and Postcolonial Spaces in the Bight of Biafra, 1840-1960,” will focus on how social mobility and reintegration politics of “Liberated Africans” who returned from Sierra Leone to Calabar, Nigeria, facilitated the formation and development of new “borderland communities” in West Africa.

“The 2019 ACLS Fellows exemplify ACLS’s inclusive vision of excellence in the humanities and humanistic social sciences,” said Matthew Goldfeder, director of fellowship programs at ACLS. “The awardees, who hail from more than 60 colleges and universities, were selected for their potential to make an original and significant contribution to knowledge. They are working at diverse types of institutions, on research projects that span antiquity to the present, in contexts around the world; the array of disciplines and methodologies represented demonstrates the vitality and the incredible breadth of humanistic scholarship today.”

A UB faculty member since 2014, Mbah has published work in The Journal of West African History, The Journal of Women’s History and the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History.

His first book, “Emergent Masculinities: Gendered Power and Social Change in the Biafran Atlantic Age,” will be published this October by Ohio University Press.

In addition to the ACLS fellowship, he is a recipient of a 2019-20 OVPRED/HI (Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development/Humanities Institute) Research Fellowship, as well as a 2015-16 HI Faculty Research Fellowship.

Prior to joining the UB faculty, Mbah served as a visiting assistant professor at Davidson College. He received his PhD in African history from Michigan State University in 2013.