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  • Jennifer Padilla Wyse

    • Coordinator, African and African American Studies
    • Kapelski Learning Center, Room 239-D
    • tel: 610-499-4374

Curriculum, African & African American Studies

Program Highlight

Study Abroad

In the course Rum, Rasta, and Revolution, students travel to Trinidad and Tobago over spring break for a week-long exploration of Trinidadian culture and ecology.

The curriculum enables students to examine theories of race and how race intersects with gender, sexuality, class, and other factors in a variety of historical and contemporary settings.

For the minor, students are required to complete Introduction to African and African-American Studies and 18 credit hours of electives. In the process of completing the 18 hours of electives, students must take courses that address these four learning outcomes:

  1. Historical awareness of African and African-American peoples
  2. Critical analysis of the cultures of the African and African-American peoples
  3. Analysis of institutions in Africa and the Americas that are shaped by and contribute to views on race
  4. Evaluation of theoretical viewpoints on race and how race intersects with other categories of analysis 

Sample Courses

View a selection of courses students typically take for a minor in African and African-American studies.

AFAS 101 Intro to African & African-American Studies (required)

This course focuses on the experiences of Africans and African Americans and the significance of race from an interdisciplinary and multicultural perspective. It explores the extent to which race, as well as other social characteristics such as gender, class, and sexual orientation, affect access to opportunity, power, and resources.

HIST 376 Slavery and Resistance

This course examines the development of the slave system in the British colonies of North America and the United States along with efforts to abolish that system. The course places American slavery within a global-historical context and includes topics such as the varied experience of slaves and slaveholders, slave revolts, slavery and American politics, the economics of slavery, radical abolitionism, and emancipation. 

SOC 245 Rap, Hip Hop, and Society

This course explores the contemporary emergence of rap and hip hop culture. The course engages students in listening to music, viewing DVDs, and reading books and articles related to rap, hip hop, and cultural values. Societal issues of social control and freedom of speech are examined. Students explore these issues with the intent to broaden their sociological imaginations.

ANTH 246 Rum, Rasta, and Revolution

The Caribbean region is known for its crystal clear waters, white sand beaches, and, most of all, cultural diversity. It is the region that gave birth to Calypso, Reggae, and Santería, where dreadlocked Rastafarians live alongside modern-day witches (brujas) and Voudou priests who claim to have the power to raise the dead. The region’s key place in the history of the African slave trade and European colonialism infused it with a mixture of West African, Native American, European, and East Indian cultural traditions. This course introduces students to the tremendous cultural diversity of the Caribbean region and gives them an opportunity to understand the historical processes that made the region what it is today. 

PSY 215 Multicultural Psychology

This course is an introduction to the principles, theories, and applications of multiculturalism. Students are asked to examine their own sense of self and others’ identity, beliefs, assumptions, and behaviors. Theories, research, and skills are explored so that students can acquire the necessary multicultural competencies for effective work with children and adolescents from diverse backgrounds (i.e., culture, race, ethnicity, class, and gender) in multicultural environments (i.e., public schools, community organizations).

For more information about courses in African & African American Studies, please refer to page 38 in our course catalog.