The WRC saddened by the passing of Prof Ali Mazrui
The Water Research Commission (WRC) is saddened by the passing of Prof Ali Ali Mazrui, (81), Albert Schweitzer Professor in the Humanities and Director of the Institute of Global Cultural Studies who died on Sunday, 12 October 2014. Mazrui paid a special visit to South Africa to share his wisdom during the Freshwater Governance Conference held in KwaZulu-Natal, Drakensberg on 5-7 November 2012. He will be remembered by the water sector for his paper ‘Water in a triple heritage perspective: indigenous, Islamic and Western legacies’.
Recognized as one of the world’s top 100 public intellectuals by Foreign Policy magazine and British journal Prospect in 2005, Mazrui was also named one of the world’s top 500 most influential Muslims in 2012 and 2013. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Manchester University in England, his master’s degree from Columbia University and his doctorate from Oxford University in England. Prior to joining the faculty at Binghamton in 1989, he taught and served as dean at Makerere University in Uganda, taught at the University of Michigan and was a visiting scholar at countless institutions. He was also the Andrew D. White Professor-at-Large Emeritus and senior scholar in Africana Studies at Cornell University. He was sought after as an advisor and leader, had advised the World Bank and served as president of the African Studies Association of the United States and vice president of the International Congress of African Studies. He was elected an honorary fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences and member of the College of Fellows of the International Association of Middle Eastern Studies. He was also elected president of the Association of Muslim Social Scientists, served on the board of directors of the American Muslim Council and as chair of the board of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy, served on the board of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and was a fellow of the Institute of Governance and Social Research. He served as president of Muslim Social Scientists of North America and was elected senior fellow of Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim Christian Understanding. Author of more than 30 books, he also published a novel, wrote for magazines and newspapers and had his most influential articles republished by Africa World Press in three volumes. He was also known for the 1986 BBC/PBS series “The Africans: A Triple Heritage.” He was awarded numerous honorary degrees in disciplines ranging from divinity to science to human development, and from humane letters to political economy. He is survived by his wife, five sons and one daughter.
Watch the video recorded while he visited South Africa in 2012
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