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American University Library Honors Dr. George Ayittey


The library of American University of Washington DC, under its program of "Celebrating Scholarship" honored  three authors, all professors from the university, on Tuesday, October 10 2006.  Among those honored was Ghana's own Dr. George Ayittey.

Dr. Ayittey has authored many books, but the book that brought him this honor was "Africa Unchained:  The Blueprint for Africa's future."

The two other professors on the list were Dr. Margaret Smith; for her book "Reckoning with the Past:  Teaching History in Northern Ireland.  And Dr. David Pike; for his work "Subterranean Cities:  The World Beneath Paris and London 1800 - 1945."

The "Celebrating Scholarship" program, set up by the university to honor authors within the faculty, has been in existence since 1996.  Eighty authors have been honored so far.  These year's recipients were introduced individually by library staff.

In her introductory address, Ms. Diana L Vogelsong, acting university librarian, described all the books by the three authors as having a common thread which dealt with societal change.

She said, "The books we honor today are based in three separate locales and cover very different terrain, but they all touch on factors that affect societal change and how the past informs the present and future of those places."

The authors, individually, had the opportunity to expand on the subject matter of their books.

Dr. Ayittey, it appeared, had been working on the theme of "Africa Unchained" for 20 years before publication.  According to him, the idea started as a thesis project for his doctorate degree.  All he had wanted to say then was that "African leaders have failed Africa."  But because of attitude in the early 80s, when political correctness prevented such statements from being made, his theme was to remain unpublished until his first book, "Africa betrayed."

Dr. George Ayittey is also the founder and president of Free Africa Foundation, a not-for-profit activist organization for African affairs which is currently based in Washington, D.C.  He has authored many books and written articles for many publications worldwide.

The University Library

George and a well-wisher, Dick Wright, in front of the library

Ms.Vogelsong, University Librarian (right) and honorees




A section of the audience


George and his book

"Africa Unchained"





American University Library Honors Dr. George Ayittey


Ghandot:  The library of American University of Washington DC, under its program of "Celebrating Scholarship" honored  three authors, all professors from the university, on Tuesday, October 10 2006.  Among those honored was Ghana's own Dr. George Ayittey... More



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