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Patrice NganangPatrice Nganang (right), associate professor of literary and cultural theory at Stony Brook University of the State University of New York, was detained in Cameroon last week, shortly after publishing a critical article on the country's leaders. Nganang, a U.S. citizen with a wide scholarly following, is from Cameroon and has strong ties there.

Samuel L. Stanley Jr., president at Stony Brook, said in a statement that officials there "are working around the clock with the appropriate authorities and elected U.S. representatives to help facilitate the safe return of Professor Nganang." Several hundred scholars have signed an open letter calling for his release, and a Facebook page has been created to promote the campaign on his behalf.