The politics of transnational student mobility: youth, education and activism in Ghana, 1957–1966

Daniel Laqua*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article examines the political agendas, practical challenges and personal aspirations that informed different forms of transnational student mobility in the 1950s and 1960s. It does so by focusing on a variety of initiatives that involved Ghana during the period of Kwame Nkrumah's rule (1957–1966). The article considers schemes that enabled Ghanaian students to attend universities in the United States and the communist bloc, but it also traces the operation of 'Freedom Fighters' scholarships that brought young people from different parts of Africa to Ghana. Moreover, it shows how involvement in student organisations connected Ghanaian student leaders to an international community of activists. Notwithstanding the importance of Cold War dynamics and Pan-African ambitions, the article argues that these multidirectional mobilities can be understood within the broader framework of internationalism. In examining this phenomenon from different perspectives, the piece traces the tensions between official designs on the one side and students’ experiences, discord and contention on the other.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSocial History
Volume48
Issue number1
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 6 Jul 2022

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