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Introduction to Africana Studies
(also offered Spring 2020)
This course introduces students to the content and contours of Africana Studies as a vibrant field of knowledge. Through exploration of the genealogy, disciplinary diversity, and evolution of the field, we will examine the depth and range of experiences of African-descended peoples throughout the Americas, the Caribbean, Europe, and Africa. We will also give some attention to how members of the Diaspora remember and encounter Africa, as well as their diverse responses to the history of enslavement, colonialism, apartheid, racism, and globalization. Through materials that embrace both historical and contemporary perspectives, we seek to help students develop critical frameworks for understanding African diasporic experience while simultaneously illumining disjunctures and challenges for the field. This course features two pedagogical strategies: 1) a rotational, interdisciplinary approach that includes the expertise, methods, and specializations of Africana faculty; and 2) the incorporation of aesthetic materials–film, photography, music, dance, performance, and artwork–to enhance student ability to draw ongoing connections between visual and textual sources covered in the course. Close textual analysis, vibrant debate, and engaging discourse are expected.
Format: lecture; discussion
Grading: no pass/fail option,
no fifth course option
class participation, weekly reading response papers, two short essays, and a final research project
AFR Core Electives
AMST Comp Studies in Race, Ethnicity, Diaspora
GBST African Studies Electives
LATS Comparative Race + Ethnic Studies Electives