The Steve Biko Foundation Mourns Prof. Ali Mazrui
On Monday, October 13, 2014, the Steve Biko Foundation, Africa and the international community lost a great friend and scholar in the passing of Professor Ali Mazrui.
Professor Mazrui, who died at the age of 81 after several months of illness, is a renowned scholar and political writer worldwide, having lectured in five continents and written 30 books. He was a foremost political writer and academic specializing in African and Islamic studies and North-South relations. His research interests included African politics, international political culture, political Islam and North-South relations.
Professor Ali Mazrui’s career began in 1967 when he joined Makerere University in Uganda, where he served as head of the Department of Political Science and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. In 1974, Mazrui joined the faculty of the University of Michigan as professor and later was appointed the Director of the Center for Afroamerican and African Studies (1978–1981). In 1989, he was appointed to the faculty of Binghamton University, State University of New York as the Albert Schweitzer Professor in the Humanities and the Director of the Institute of Global Cultural Studies (IGCS).
As a scholar, Professor Ali Mazrui infused his political ideals into most of his scholarly work, always championing the cause of Africa. The Foundation recalls with a sense of gratitude the eulogy given by Professor Mazrui at the University of Michigan on September 1977 in which he said: “Biko has been compared with Martin Luther King – killed prematurely, committed to a dream… He combined King’s moral fervor with the militancy of a warrior. He combined King’s universalism with the single mindedness of a nationalist.”
While saddened by his passing, the Foundation celebrates the invaluable contribution Professor Ali Mazrui made to African scholarship and political discourse. May his indelible intellectual legacy continue to inspire people all over the world in the cause of justice, freedom and equality.
Rest in Peace Prof.
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