African and African Disapora Studies Department
African and African Disapora Studies Department

AFR 301 • African American Culture

30365 • Jones, Omi
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM CAL 100
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This course surveys African American cultural production from the 1600s to the present. Topics cover the circumstances and responses of blacks during North American enslavement, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Great Migration, The Harlem Renaissance, The Civil Rights Movement, and in contemporary contexts. Class sessions will reflect our reading of primary and secondary texts that embody a wide range of African American religious, political, social and artistic thought and production. The class will fill gaps in students’ knowledge about African American culture and history and provide a foundation for future Black Studies course work.

Required Texts:

Kindred (Octavia Butler)

Souls of Black Folk (W.E.B. Du Bois)

Why We Can’t Wait (Martin Luther King, Jr.)

Price of the Ticket (Frederick Harris)

Good Ole’ Fashioned Composition Notebook

Graded Assessments (100 points available):

Unannounced (10) Quiz #1 Kindred, lectures & other readings Unannounced

(10) Quiz #2 Souls of Black Folk, lectures & other readings

10/9/14: (30) Mid-term Test

Unannounced (10) Quiz #3 Why We Can’t Wait, lectures & other readings

Unannounced (10) Quiz #4 (Price of the Ticket; lectures & other readings

12/5/14: (30) Final Test 

AFR 317C • Intro To Ancient Egypt

30385 • Nethercut, William
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM WAG 101
(also listed as C C 304C)
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AFR 317C • The United States And Africa

30380 • Falola, Oloruntoyin
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM CLA 0.126
(also listed as HIS 317L)
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AFR 317D • Intro East Austin Ethnography

30390 • Jones, Omi
Meets W 2:00PM-5:00PM BUR 214
(also listed as AMS 315, ANT 310L)
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In this course, students will study ethnographic methods including observant participation, interviewing, and oral histories by conducting fieldwork in East Austin communities. Students will apply the techniques they learn toward an investigation of Black out-migration and gentrification in Austin. This course provides students with skills in critical ethnography by foregrounding the racial politics that shape community-building and city development.


Objectives: Upon completion of this course students should be able to differentiate between qualitative and quantitative research methodologies, conduct ethnographic interviews, maintain a fieldwork notebook, create survey research, conduct oral histories, and identify the major components of critical ethnography as a methodology.



Preliminary Ethnographic Analysis     10

Fieldwork Notebook (I & II)                20

Data Collection                                   30

Ethnographic Summary                      20

2-Minute Essay (5/2 pts. each)          10

Participation                                       10

AFR 317D • Mlk Jr: A Moral Obligation

30415 • Burt, Brenda
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM BUR 220
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This course will explore the Civil Rights Movement focusing on the specific work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  The selected readings will help the student to explore the history of Blacks from slavery to the present, using Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s work as a lens.  The history of the MLK statue on the UT campus will be a main unit of the course, with the anticipation of a Black Studies History tour to Memphis, TN or Atlanta, GA as a “study abroad” opportunity. The course will incorporate the use of lectures, readings, video, simulation exercises, research, and extensive class discussions to assist students as they explore the impact of the Civil Rights Movement, using The University of Texas as one case study among many.

AFR 317D • Race/Gender/Education At Ut

30395 • Tinsley, Natasha
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 208
(also listed as WGS 301)
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While the struggles of black and Latino men in higher education have gained much-needed visibility in the last decade, the challenges faced by women of color in university settings continue even as they are increasingly invisibilized. This course opens inquiry about the resources and skills that women of color need to succeed in higher education in general, and at the University of Texas in particular. Through interdisciplinary readings, we will explore avenues for women of color to bolster their academic, social, physical, emotional, and sexual wellbeing while pursuing advanced degrees.



  • Nnedi Okafor, Binti
  • Gabriella Gutierrez y Muhs, Presumed Incompetent: The Intersections of Race and Class for Women in Academia
  • Theodora Regina Berry, From Oppression to Grace: Women of Color and Their Dilemmas in the Academy
  • Esmeralda Santiago, Almost a Woman



3 papers, 20%/each

Class participation, 40%

AFR 317D • Rights In Modern America

30400 • Green, Laurie
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM UTC 3.110
(also listed as AMS 315, HIS 317L, WGS 301)
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This course explores the history of social movements for rights in twentieth-century America. Whether they used a language of equality, justice, freedom or liberation, an array of social groups in modern America forged struggles and organizations that advocated for recognition of their rights. And yet there was no unanimity about the meaning of rights; the course examines changing and often conflicting interpretations, focusing on Blacks, Latinos, Asian Americans, Native Americans, women, working-class people, and gay men and lesbians. Instead of isolating them from each other, we use both comparative and relational approaches to the history of these movements. We strive not only to make sense of similarities and differences, but how they influenced each other. It what ways, for instance, did the Civil Rights Movement of the early 1960s inspire the Women’s Liberation Movement? Such an approach can lead to surprises; in Austin, for example, African American and Mexican American attorneys filed suit for school desegregation on the same day. A goal is for students to get a sense of how historians approach their work, thus readings include original historical documents and memoirs in addition to scholarly analyzes. This is primarily a lecture course, but some classes are devoted to group projects.


Possible readings:

Selected historical documents and articles

Melba Pattillo Beals, Warriors Don’t Cry:  A Searing Memoir of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock’s Central High

Carlos Bulosan, American is in the Heart: A Personal History

Charles Denby, Indignant Heart: A Black Worker’s Journal

José Angel Gutiérrez, The Making of a Civil Rights Leader: José Angel Gutiérrez

Audre Lorde, Zami: A New Spelling of My Name

Wilma Mankiller, Mankiller: A Chief and Her People



Midterm                                                                                                          25%

Final exam                                                                                                      35%

3 short quizzes on lecture terms (5% each)                                                  15%

1 500-word writing assignment on a selected reading (15%)                      15%

2 historical documents analyses (Submission grade, 5% each)                    10%

Attendance is required. Extra credit opportunities are available

AFR 317D • Special Tpcs In Black US Stds

30405 • Burt, Brenda
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM BUR 214
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AFR 317D • The Black Power Movement

30410 • Moore, Leonard
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM UTC 2.112A
(also listed as HIS 317L)
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The Black Power movement was a distinct period from the late 1960s and early 1970s that emphasized racial pride and the creation of black political and cultural institutions to nurture and promote black collective interests and advance black values, and secure black autonomy. The range of black power ideology ranged from the desire to create an all-black nation-state to the promotion of black economic power. This course will look at the major organizations, key figures, and ideologies of the black power movement.

Exams will be given approximately every five weeks and the group project is due at the end of the semester.

Exam 1: 25%

Exam 2: 25%

Exam 3: 25%

Group Project: 25%


AFR 317E • Afro-Brazilian Diaspora

30420 • Afolabi, Omoniyi
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM WEL 3.402
(also listed as LAS 310)
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This course focuses on post-abolition Afro-Brazilian life, history, culture, politics, and letters.  It engages a wide range of literary texts, socio-cultural movements, visual arts, and cultural performances, while raising a number of questions that would lead to provocative midterm and final research papers, while simultaneously honing students’ writing skills with a number of response papers that may be expanded into a research paper. Most concepts and issues will be illustrated with multimedia clips or movies to ensure that students gain a richer experience of the Afro-Brazilian diaspora world.

Some of the questions the course will grapple with include the following: (i) What explains the continued exclusion of Afro-Brazilians from political power?; (ii) What is the legacy or impact of slavery within this context?; (iii) How is the concept of Africa (re)imagined, distorted, and manipulated in this regard?; (iv)What are the discourses used to justify social inequalities and racial discrimination in Brazil?; (v) How is the “radical” view on discrimination silenced while the “co-opted” perspective is promoted?; (vi) What are the effects of governmental patronage on cultural producers as they negotiate what Carl Degler calls the “mulatto escape hatch”?; and (vii) What are the limitations of ideology in an era of “globalization” and pragmatism?  These among other issues will form the basis of the course which will additionally analyze the social condition that goes beyond the more apparent “culture game”; and must also be seen as a political game towards visibility, participation, gendered equality, and empowerment.



  1. Students will be able to meet writing, global, and cultural diversity flags.
  2. Students will be exposed to the dynamics of coping mechanism with social inequalities.
  3. Students will not only be exposed to elements of style, they will improve their writing skills by having opportunities to re-write their assignments.
  4. Transnational resonances will be invoked for comparative analysis within contexts and texts in order to see the African Diaspora beyond a continental prism.

Required Texts:

  1. Johnson, Crook et al. ed. Black Brazil: Culture, Identity, and Social Mobilization
  2. Alves, Miriam and C. R. Durham. Finally Us/Enfim Nós
  3. Almeida, Bira. Capoeira: A Brazilian Art Form: History, Philosophy, and Practice
  4. Guimarães, Geni. The Color of Tenderness
  5. Gomes, Dias. Journey to Bahia


Course Requirements and Grading:

5 Response Papers (2 pages)             = 10%

5 Re-Written Papers (2 pages each)  = 10%

Midterm Paper (5-7 pages)                = 20%

Research Proposal and Annotated

Bibliography                                        = 10%

Final Research Paper  (10 pages)       = 20%

Oral Presentation                               = 10%

Attendance                                         = 20%  

AFR 317E • Black Queer Art Worlds

30425 • Gill, Lyndon
Meets MWF 2:00PM-3:00PM WEL 3.402
(also listed as ANT 310L, WGS 301)
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Exploration of over two decades of work produced by and about black queer subjects throughout the circum-Atlantic world. Provides an introduction to various artists and intellectuals of the black queer diaspora, as well as an examination of the viability of black queer aesthetic practice as a form of theorizing.

AFR 317F • African American Lit And Cul

30435 • Dechavez, Yvette
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 206
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AFR 317F • African American Lit And Cul

30430 • Maner, Sequoia
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM BEN 1.122
(also listed as E 314V)
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E 314V  l  1-African American Literature and Culture


Instructor:  Maner, S

Unique #:  35005

Semester:  Fall 2017

Cross-lists:  AFR 317F

Restrictions:  n/a

Computer Instruction:  No


Prerequisites:  One of the following: E 303C (or 603A), RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 303C (or 603A).


Description:  This course explores the richness of African American literary and cultural traditions.  We will read novels, poetry, and essays that explore the construction and expression of black identity from chattel slavery through our contemporary #BlackLivesMatter era.  Additionally, music and film will help us think through how race, gender, and class have been negotiated in African American culture.


The primary aim of this course is to help students develop and improve the critical reading, writing, and thinking skills needed for success in upper-division courses in English and other disciplines.  They will also gain practice in using the Oxford English Dictionary and other online research tools and print resources that support studies in the humanities.  Students will learn basic information literacy skills and models for approaching literature with various historical, generic, and cultural contexts in mind.


This course contains a writing flag.  The writing assignments in this course are arranged procedurally with a focus on invention, development through instructor and peer feedback, and revision; they will comprise a major part of the final grade.


Tentative Texts:  Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl; James Baldwin’s Notes of a Native Son; Alice Walker’s The Color Purple.


Requirements & Grading:  There will be a series of 3 short essays, the first of which must be revised and resubmitted.  Subsequent essays may also be revised and resubmitted by arrangement with the Instructor (70% of the final grade).  There will also be short reading quizzes and weekly blog posts (30% of the final grade).

AFR 317F • Music Of African Americans

30440-30455 • Carson, Charles
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM MRH 2.608
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AFR 372C • Race/Gender/Surveillance

30465 • Browne, Simone
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM CLA 0.102
(also listed as SOC 322V, WGS 322)
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Drawing from social science readings, science fiction (Gattaca, THX-1138, Ex-Machina, Grounded), documentaries, and popular media (24, South Park, Orange is the New Black, The Bachelor, Cheaters), this course introduces students to the emerging field of Surveillance Studies.

We examine: slavery, reality TV, sports, Google, trolling + social media, borders, airports, biometric technology, whistleblowers, drones, wearables + fashion, among other topics.

Assignments: Film Review, In-class Quizzes, Current Event Analysis, Take-Home Final Exam, and Research Teams produce a digital magazine on “Surveillance”. This course is cross-listed with Women and Gender Studies, and Sociology. Cultural Diversity Flag. Ethics and Leadership Flag.

AFR 372D • Exploring Food/Urban Change

30470 • Thomas, Kevin
Meets MW 4:00PM-5:30PM WAG 420
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AFR 372D • Psychology Of Race/Racism

30475 • Awad, Germine
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM SZB 370
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AFR 372D • Sociocul Influences On Learn

30480 • Brown, Keffrelyn
Meets T 1:00PM-4:00PM SZB 278
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AFR 372D • Sociocul Influences On Learn

Meets T 4:00PM-7:00PM SZB 240
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AFR 372D • Sociocul Influences On Learn

Meets TH 1:00PM-4:00PM SZB 278
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AFR 372E • Afr Am Lit Snc Harlm Renais

30510 • Woodard, Helena
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM PAR 204
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AFR 372E • Afr Am Lit Thru Harl Renais

30505 • Richardson, Matt
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM BUR 228
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AFR 372E • Gwendolyn Brooks

30495 • Jones, Omi
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM ETC 2.132
(also listed as E 349S, T D 387D, WGS 340)
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In this course, students will study the prose and poetry of Gwendolyn Brooks, giving particular attention to her novel, Maud Martha.  Students will analyze texts, develop performance scripts, create criticism, and present readings centered around the work of Gwendolyn Brooks.  Emphasis will be placed on Black Feminist staging strategies, the role of Chamber Theatre in the development of Black art, and the position of Gwendolyn Brooks in the literary world. 



Brooks, Gwendolyn.  Maud Martha.  Chicago:  Third World Press, 1993.

Brooks, Gwendolyn.  “The Rise of Maud Martha,” in Invented Lives: The Narratives of Black Women, 1860-1960, Mary Helen Washington.  Garden City, NY:  Anchor Press, 1987.

Brooks, Gwendolyn.  The World of Gwendolyn Brooks. New York:  Harper and Row, 1971.

Christian, Barbara.  “Nuance and the Novella: A Study of Gwendolyn Brooks's Maud Martha,” in A Life Distilled: Gwendolyn Brooks, Her Poetry and Fiction, eds. Maria K. Mootry and Gary Smith, 1987, pp. 239–253.

Washington, Mary Helen.  “‘Taming All That Anger Down’: Rage and Silence in Gwendolyn

Brooks's Maud Martha,” Massachusetts Review 24 (Summer 1983): 453–466.



Analysis of Maud Martha                                           15 pts.

Comparative Analysis of Two Brooks Poems 15 pts.

Solo Performance of Brooks Chapter                         15 pts.

Chamber Theatre Script                                               10 pts.

Chamber Theatre Production                                       25 pts.

Attendance at Black Studies Performance                   5 pts.

2-Minute in-class essays                                             5 pts.

Class Participation                                                       10 pts.

AFR 372E • Toni Morrison

30500 • Woodard, Helena
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 204
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AFR 372F • Politics Of Black Life

30515 • Marshall, Stephen
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM CLA 0.104
(also listed as AMS 370)
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Black Lives Matter activists have come to occupy center stage within American political life by placing the peculiar vulnerability of Black life before public view. Quite often, this vulnerability and its politicization are framed as novel developments within American political life that are emblematic of contemporary political dysfunction. However, black life has been a central, enduring, and high stakes political matter within US politics since the Constitutional Convention of 1787. Similarly, activism in defense of black life is at least as old as black anti-slavery activity. How then, should we understand the peculiarity of our moment and the distinctiveness of the politics of Black Lives Matter? In this course, we will begin to grapple with these questions by examining the politics of Black life as an operation of American politics and a form of black political thought. Among other questions, we shall ask: how and for which ends has black life been constructed and contested as a vital resource within the life of the American Polity? How have these contests engendered distinctive forms of black vulnerability? Is the contemporary vulnerability of black life to state violence, premature death, and incarceration continuous with older forms of black vulnerability?  If so, what are the implications for contemporary politics? Finally, what is distinctive about the politics of Black Lives Matter as a form of black politics and black political thought? Which traditions of black political theorizing inform this movement and which traditions are consciously and/or implicitly rejected? 

Possible Texts

The Federalist Papers, Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, John Jay

Democracy in America, Alexis de Tocqueville

The US Constitution

Black Reconstruction, W.E.B. DuBois

Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehise Coates

Beloved, Toni Morrison

Home, Toni Morrison

The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin

No Name in the Street, James Baldwin

AFR 372F • Urban Unrest

30520 • Tang, Eric
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 203
(also listed as AAS 330, AMS 321, ANT 324L, URB 354)
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How and when do cities burn? The modern US city has seen its share of urban unrest, typified by street protests (both organized and spontaneous), the destruction of private property, looting, and fires. Interpretations of urban unrest are varied: some describe it as aimless rioting, others as political insurrection. Most agree that the matter has something to do with the deepening of racism, poverty and violence. This course takes a closer look at the roots of urban unrest, exploring a range of origins: joblessness, state violence, white flight, the backlash against civil rights gains, new immigration and interracial strife. Urban unrest is often cast as an intractable struggle between black and white, yet this course examines the ways in which multiple racial groups have entered the fray. Beyond race and class, the course will also explore unrest as a mode of pushing the normative boundaries of gender and sexuality in public space. Course material will draw from film, literature, history, geography and anthropology.


Required Texts: 

  • The majority of readings will be available as pdf on Blackboard. Students must acquire the following texts:
  • Robert F. Williams, Negroes With Guns
  • Robin D.G. Kelley, Yo Mama’s Dysfunctional: Fighting the Culture Wars in Urban America
  • Dan Georgakis and Marvin Surkin, Detroit: I Do Mind Dying: A Study in Urban Revolution
  • Robert Gooding Williams eds. Reading Rodney King/Reading Urban Uprising

AFR 372G • African Queer Studies

30530 • Livermon, Xavier
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM CLA 0.104
(also listed as WGS 335)
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This course explores queer gender and sexuality in Africa, with particular focus on theoretical issues, the colonial encounter, citizenship and activism, media representations. In the first unit, we will examine some of the theoretical issues that are relevant to studying queer gender and sexuality in Africa and in the African Diaspora more broadly. In the second unit, we will explore some of the literature on the impact of colonialism on queer African identities and practices, and we will pay particular attention to its lasting impact on queer African lives in our post-colonial moment. In the third unity, we will read several ethnographic and literary texts on specific communities in order to expand our understanding of the diverse ways in which queer Africans create identities, experience desire, and redefine dominant notions of citizenships. In the final unit of the course, we will examine representations of queer African sexuality in literature, film, and media, focusing especially on representation in relation to recent events in South Africa, Uganda, Malawi, and Senegal. We will pay particular attention to how such representations are shaped by political economy and influenced by the international community.



Queer African Reader Sokari Ekine and Hakima Abbas eds.

African Sexualities: A reader Sylvia Tamale ed.

Heterosexual Africa?: The History of an Idea from the Age of Exploration to the Age of AIDS Marc Epprecht

OUT in Africa: LGBT Organizing in Namibia and South Africa Ashley Currier

Allah Made Us: Sexual Outlaws in an Islamic African City Rudolf P. Gaudio

Black Bull, Ancestors, and Me: My life as a Lesbian Sangoma Nkunzi Zandile Nkadinde



Attendance: 10%

Participation: 10%

Response Papers: 20%

Midterm: 20%

Final: 40% 

AFR 372G • Contemp African Pop Culture

30525 • Livermon, Xavier
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM JES A207A
(also listed as ANT 324L, WGS 340)
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The aim of this course is to introduce students to some of the most significant aspects of popular culture in contemporary sub-Saharan Africa. Manifestations of popular culture are considered as markers of modern African identities, embedded in complex and varied socio-cultural, historical and political contexts. Within the current era of global, diasporic, and transnational flows, it is neither sufficient any longer to view Africa solely from the perspective of political economies, nor to discuss contemporary African culture within the tradition-versus-modernity debate. Manifestations of popular culture in Africa show that the continent is part and parcel of the postmodern world, with cultural production simultaneously influenced by global trends and specific African contexts. The course will cover various forms of cultural expression and genres, including popular film, music, literature, dance, comics and cartoons, fashion, sport, street art, theatre, and contemporary visual arts. Attention will be paid to the production modes, audiences and sites of consumption of these different genres and aspects of popular culture. Course instruction will include extensive film and clip viewings, analysis of music, and reading fictional texts such as popular novels and comics.


  • Marguerite Abouet Aya: Life in Yop City.
  • Nadine Dolby: Constructing Race: Youth, Identity and Popular Culture in South Africa.
  • Manthia Diawara In Search of Africa.
  • Sokari Ekine ed. SMS Uprising: Mobile Activism in Africa. 
  • Relebohile Moletsane, Claudia Mitchell, and Ann Smith eds. Was it Something I Wore? Dress, Identity, Materialitiy.
  • Mwenda Ntarangwi East African Hip-Hop: Youth Culture and Globalization.
  • Simon Weller and Garth Walker South African Township Barbershops and Salons.

Grading breakdown (percentages):

  • Attendance and Participation 20%
  • Response Papers 20%
  • Midterm 20%
  • Final 40%

AFR 372G • Histories African Liberatn

30535 • Chery, Tshepo
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM GWB 1.130
(also listed as HIS 364G)
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Is Africa free from all forms of colonialism? This course engages this question by examining the historical moment of African independence. It focuses on a variety of texts, both primary and secondary, from across the continent and beyond that embody the romantic visions, realistic compromises, and some of the tragic aftermaths of independence on the African continent. The course will explore themes that include an examination of the anti-colonial movement, the role of Pan-Africanism within nationalistic dialogues, the strengths and weakness of African nationalism after independence, as well as the challenges of nationalism in contemporary Africa.

AFR 374C • Egypt Hieroglyphics Cul Ctx

30545 • Nethercut, William
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM WAG 112
(also listed as C C 348)
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AFR 374D • African American Politics

30560 • Philpot, Tasha
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 1
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AFR 374D • Black Women In America

30555 • Berry, Daina
Meets MW 11:30AM-1:00PM JES A215A
(also listed as HIS 350R)
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AFR 374D • Hist Black Entrepren In US

30550 • Walker, Juliet
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM GAR 2.128
(also listed as HIS 350R)
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AFR 374E • Adv Topics In African Diaspora

30565 • Gill, Lyndon
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM PAR 306
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AFR 374E • Urban Slavery In The Americas

30570 • Canizares, Jorge
Meets T 3:30PM-6:30PM GAR 0.120
(also listed as AMS 370, HIS 350L, LAS 366)
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Slavery was prevailing labor institution in the early modern world. It was not associated with race. When the Iberians arrived in the New World, Southern European had slaves of all colors: Greeks, Turks, Moors, Guanches (the natives of the Canary Islands), and Sub-Saharan Africans. This was also true of all Islamic societies in the Mediterranean. The Ottomans and the Mamelukes held white Christians, Russians, and Sub-Saharan Africans as slaves. The word slave, in fact, is a reference to white Slavic captives. Throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries Native Americans became slaves and captives of the Europeans by the hundreds of thousands. Natives themselves enslaved rivals, including Europeans. In this world of generalized, nonracial slavery, however, slaves had some rights to self-manumission and even property.  Many slaves could even become powerful, as in the case of the mameluke troops among the Ottomans. Islam and Christianity  limited the power and sovereignty of masters held over slaves. Religious institutions could intervene and remove slaves from abusive masters.  In the European Mediterranean, blacks were not only considered slaves but also saints, ambassadors, queens, kings, and generals. By the 19th century, this world of slaveries had been completely transformed. Slavery was now associated exclusively with Africans in America. Blacks became chattel with no rights. The constitution of the independent Republic  of Texas in 1841, for example, held that any black who was manumitted could not reside in the Republic. It was illegal for blacks to be anything other than slaves. This course explores how in the 1700s slavery became racialized and industrialized, leading to legal regimes the world had never witnessed before. This transformation of slavery also triggered new resistance movements, including  abolitionism. By the early 1800, abolitionism, resistance, and revolutions led to the dismantling of the first wave of racialized, industrialized slavery in the Americas and to the end of the Atlantic slave trade. Yet a “Second Slavery” emerged in the 19th century that thrived in the Age of Abolitionism and the ending of the African trade. It was a form of racial slavery that was brutal as the previous one but that no longer relied on slaves from Africa, but from the displacement of salves within the American continent. This slavery powered the industrial revolution and the transformation of the US into a global power. This course explores this massive changes in the history of slaveries in the Americas and focuses particularly in the racialization and industrialization of slavery.


Andres Resendez, The Other Slavery
 Robin Blackburn The Making of New World Slavery

Robin Blackburn, The Overthrow of Colonial Slavery, 1776-1848

Ira BerlinGenerations of Captivity: A History of African-American Slaves

John Thornton Africa and Africans in the Making of the New World

James H. Sweet. Domingos Alvares, African Healing, and the Intellectual History of the Atlantic World 

Linda M. Heywood Njinga of Angola Africa’s Warrior Queen

Laurent Dubois, Avengers of the New World


Weekly papers: 60 % grade
Participation-attendance: 10 % grade
Final paper: 30 % grade

AFR 374F • Africana Women's Art

30600 • Okediji, Moyosore
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM DFA 2.506
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AFR 374F • Caribbean Literature

30580 • Wilks, Jennifer
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM PAR 105
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AFR 374F • Cinema Of African Diaspora

30575 • Chambers, Edward
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM CLA 0.120
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AFR 374F • Contemp Art Afr Diaspora

30605 • Chambers, Edward
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM UTC 4.120
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AFR 374F • Lit Of Black Politics

30610 • Marshall, Stephen
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM BEN 1.122
(also listed as AMS 370)
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Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin, and Toni Morrison are three of the greatest American writers. The corpus of each contains first rate literary works, provocative and erudite literary and cultural criticism, and insightful theoretical analysis of the perils and possibilities of black life under conditions of American political modernity and late modernity.

In this course, we will examine the novels, plays, and critical essays of these writers as works of democratic political theorizing and political engagement. We shall ask, how do each of these writers conceive the legacies of slavery, mastery, segregation, and racial terror, and how do each conceive the relationship between these legacies and contemporary black life? How does each writer conceive the lessons of this legacy(s) for contemporary political life? What aesthetic forms are most adequate to wrestling with these legacies, according to these three writers? And, what is the vocation of the artist in Black America and America as a whole, and are the conceptions of the artistic vocation held by these writers politically relevant for us today?



5 page Midterm paper: 20%

15 page Research Paper: 40%

Daily reading quizzes: 20%

Class Presentation: 20%


Possible Texts

  • Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
  • Ralph Ellison, The Collected Essays of Ralph Ellison
  • James Baldwin, Go Tell it On the Mountain
  • James Baldwin, Blues For Mister Charlie
  • James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket
  • Toni Morrison, Beloved
  • Toni Morrison, Paradise
  • Toni Morrison, What Moves at the Margins
  • Toni Morrison, Playing in the Dark

AFR 374F • Music Of African Diaspora

30585-30595 • Moore, Robin
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM MRH 2.634
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