African American and Africana Studies

All Majors & Minors

African American and Africana Studies Electives

Although these courses may change from semester to semester, a wide variety of elective courses are available for students interested in studying AAAS.

AMST-200D Race Matters
Study the “color line” across U.S. culture, its support to white social supremacy and black Americans’ resistance to it. Read current texts on race.

AMST200E Emancipation
Discover the role of writing in the emancipation of 19th-century enslaved African Americans through historical research, literary analysis and film.

ANTH-242 Peoples of Africa 
Sub-Saharan Africa’s history and culture unfolds through topics such as settlement and migration, economics, belief systems, colonization and social change.

BE-110 Race & Gender in Amer. Economy
Analyze the main economic tools used for policy, economic status, causes and cures, and discrimination. Examine government policies, some with goals affecting equal opportunity and income equality for Hispanics and African-Americans. 

DANCE-250 African Dance 
Learn the movement, rhythms and cultural context of selected dance traditions from the Old Mali Empire with live African drum accompaniment and experience a community-based ethos in class.

ENGL-222 African-American Literature
Spirituals and speeches, plays and prose, folktales and film expose traditions fueled by the power of the word in African-American culture.

ENGL-240 Caribbean Literature
With its gumbo of cultures, languages, histories, and mythologies, its transatlantic struggles and alliances, what can writers unveil about this complex region? Seek answers by discussing, presentating, and writing on folklore, poetry, fiction, drama and film.

FS-252-African-American Film 
Learn about films made by African American filmmakers from the silent era to the present, white Hollywood’s productions of blackness, and prominent performers in black-cast musicals of the 1930s and 1940s, Blaxploitation films of the 1970s, and ghetto action films of the 1990s. 

FREN-203 Studies of Senegal
Investigate contemporary Senegal, especially the indigenous and European influences which have contributed to modern Senegalese culture, as concrete preparation for future study abroad.

FREN-252 Francophone Literature
Texts including fiction, historical works, and film examine 20th century literature from former French colonies from Africa and the Caribbean, with additional material from French-speaking Canada. Students also explore colonialism and its aftermath.

HIST-222 African-American History I / HIST-223 African-American History II 
Read, analyze and discuss various social movements African-Americans have initiated to pursue justice, equality, self-determination, and social transformation. Study struggles based on politics, ideology, religion, gender privilege and region, and alliances forged with other groups at home and abroad.

HIST-231 Bibles, Guns, and Minerals in Africa: A Comparative History 

Get introduced to Africa through a focus on Kenya and Tanzania. The course compares and contrasts their histories with attention to settler colonies, slavery, competing cultural and economic interests, liberation struggles, and gender.

HIST-323 Civil War America
Consider and explore the war experience from military, political and home front perspectives, the institution of slavery and the cultural, economic and political divergence of the North and South in American society after c. 1820. 

HIST-329 The Black Freedom Movement 

Citizenship, (non)violence, gender, pan Africanism, and nationalism are key themes energizing the study of a movement encompassing Civil Rights and Black Power. Digest the approaches to study and learn how scholars, activists, and political figures debate the legacy of this captivating moment in U.S. history.

HIST-331 Topics in African History
Study the diversity of the African continent since 1400. Topics may include the empires of West Africa, African slavery and the transatlantic slave trade, the Dutch and British Cape Colony, and the independence movements of the twentieth century. 

HIST-367 Cultures of Resistance
This course focuses on the past, present, and future of various local cultures in an age of a hegemonic global pop culture, advanced digital communication, and seemingly ever-increasing democratization of innovative technologies

IR-400 Research in International Relations Ambassador 
IR400W is an intensive capstone course focused on politics in Africa. 

LAS-215 U.S. Latino/a Literature

Read the works of U.S. Latino and Latina authors writing in English in the United States, with a focus on political, social and economic conditions shaping the literary experiences within Chicano, Puerto Rican, and Cuban-American communities. 

MCS/GWMS 319 Sex, Race, and Sitcoms
Explore the use of race, class, and gender as comedy and social commentary in American satire, sitcoms and stand-up performance. 

MCS-340 Gender, Ethnicity, and Communication
Connect theories and research on gender, ethnicity and communication to African-American culture.

MUSIC-207-History of Jazz
Survey jazz from its African origins and African-American roots to the present. Study issues facing black artists through intensive listening assignments, weekly writing, and projects.

PHIL-230 Philosophy of Race
Analyze concepts of race in daily life, the sciences and the academic world from a philosophical approach that includes ethics and politics.

POL 315-Race & Politics in the U.S.
Examine the politics of the relationships among Americans of African, Asian, Hispanic, and European decent. 

POL-316 African American Politics in the United States 
Survey the philosophical perspectives and political strategies adopted by African Americans in their efforts to obtain equality in the United States. 

POL 399A: Democratization in Africa:

Trace the development of democracy across Africa, taking stock of current trends in democratization and analyzing prospects for its increase on the continent. Themes include legal and institutional reform, corruption, civil society and human rights, elections, and economic development.

REL-361 Religion & Civil Rights
Topics include the Mississippi movement, the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. and of Malcolm X, the role of women, and black power. Joining a study tour of Civil Rights sites in Mississippi over Spring Break is optional.

REL-225 African-American Religious Experience
This historical, theological, and contextual study of religion, including the African background, the development of the Black Church, the Black Muslims, Civil Rights, and the emergence of Black Womanist theologies. 

SOC-220 Environmental Justice           

Environmental inequality in the United States, is the focus of SOC-220, particularly the inequitable distribution of environmental amenities and harms on the basis of race and class. Explore who gets the environmental goods, who gets the environmental bads, and why.

SOC-245 Equality & Inequality
What causes the inquities we see in wealth, power, and prestige? Discuss how class, race, and gender affect the nature of social inequality in the United States. 

SOC-258 African-American Experience
Explore the experiences of African Americans in the U.S., both the historical context of Black life and many contemporary issues such race and discrimination.