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

AFR 303 • Intro To Black Studies-Wb

30905 • Colon Pizzini, Bethzabeth • Internet; Asynchronous
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This course provides students with an introduction to Black Studies. The first section of the course is devoted to a history of Black Studies in the U.S. using the integration and development of Black Studies here at the University of Texas, Austin as a case study. We will then turn to considerations of the historical construction of Africa, the Black Diaspora and the idea of Blackness. Building on this foundation the course provides students with the analytical tools to critically explore canonical Black Studies literature, themes, and theories. This section of the course interrogates race, gender, class, sexuality, and their intersections as well as culture, power and politics. The second section of the course will focus in on the expression and use of Black Studies in the areas of: Critical Black Studies; Education, Psychology, and Mental Health; Government, Law and Public Policy; Expressive Culture, Arts, Music, Sports; and Africa and its Diasporic Cultures.

AFR 310K • Introduction To Modern Africa

30910 • Falola, Oloruntoyin
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM UTC 3.132
GC (also listed as HIS 310)
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AFR 315I • Intro Afr Amer Women's Hist

30915 • Farmer, Ashley
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM SZB 2.802
CD HI (also listed as WGS 301)
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This lecture course examines the experience of African American women in American history. It is designed with the idea that there is not one singular experience of black women in America, but rather a multitude of black women’s voices and perspectives that comprise this history. We will explore black women’s experiences across class, regional, and organizational lines. Themes and issues will include family life, work, political activism, and sexuality. The course will focus on how white and black Americans have attempted to control and represent African American women. We will also foreground how African American women have articulated their perspectives, needs, and emancipatory goals.

AFR 315P • Intro Black Women's Studies

30920 • Colon Pizzini, Bethzabeth
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM MEZ 1.102
CD (also listed as WGS 301)
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Students will gain a solid foundation in the main themes and theories of Black Women’s Studies. Further, students will learn to think critically about issues of race, gender, sexuality, class, and ability as they impact the lives of Black women globally as well as in scholarship and popular media about them. Using Feminist theory, Black Feminist Theory and Womanist theory as frameworks students will examine the history, development, and importance of Black Women’s Studies as a discipline and taking seriously the feminist statement that the personal is political students will learn to relate these theories to our daily lives. Students will learn to think and read critically and to thoughtfully analyze stereotypes and representations of Black womanhood and their implications. Students will also be exposed to a growing and interdisciplinary body of research, literature and culture material about and by Black women globally.

AFR 315T • African American Lit And Cul

30925 • Jarman, Cody
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM SZB 4.618
CDWr (also listed as E 314V)
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E 314V  l  1-African American Literature and Culture

Instructor:  Jarman, C

Unique #:  35140

Semester:  Spring 2022

Cross-lists:  AFR 315T, 30925


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

Description:  “Revolution is based on land. Land is the basis of all independence. Land is the basis of freedom, justice, and equality.” --Malcolm X

In 1963, Malcolm X outlined a vision for American Black nationalism that centered the importance of land to Black liberation.  However, his observations invite as many questions as they answer:  What is land in the Black American imagination? How does the history of chattel slavery impact the meaning of a land marked by oppression? What kinds of freedom are made possible by land ownership? Are any kinds of freedom made impossible?  In this course, we’ll address these questions as they appear across twentieth and twenty-first century African-American literature and film, focusing particular on the significance of rural and ‘natural’ spaces.  While the class is centered on the topic of land, we will also be exploring histories of racial oppression and black resistance, and we will consider the ways that literary works create meaning.  We will read, analyze, and discuss traditional literary forms such as the novel, poem, and short story as well as essays and works of nonfiction, and we will engage thoughtfully with Critical Race Theory and literary theory.

The primary aim of this course is to help students develop and improve critical reading, writing, and thinking skills needed for success in upper-division courses in English and other writing-focused disciplines.  Close-reading skills will be emphasized.  Students will also gain familiarity with online research tools such as the OED, JSTOR, and other important databases and resources.

This course contains a Cultural Diversity and 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.

Potential Texts:  Cane by Jean Toomer, Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward, and Get Out directed by Jordan Peele.  Supplementary essays and speeches by Ida B. Wells, Malcolm X and others will also be assigned

Requirements & Grading:  Close-Reading Essay (15%); Annotated Bibliography (15%); Reading Responses (15%); Mini-Assignments (20%); Final Essay (10%); Final Essay Revision (15%); Participation (10%)

AFR 315U • Music Of African Americans

30930-30945 • Carson, Charles
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM MRH 2.608
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AFR 320C • Power/Place Making Tx Hist-Wb

30950 • Colon Pizzini, Bethzabeth
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM • Internet; Synchronous
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What are the stories told about Texas’ history? Where are the places that help those stories be told? The State Capitol grounds, the Alamo in San Antonio, the South Mall on UT’s campus, and even the Barbara Jordan statuary at the Austin Bergstrom Airport are but a few examples of the commemorative and memorialized sites that convey accounts of Texas history. This course explores places in the Texas landscape as windows into Texas history and the political and social thinking that have formed our understandings of Texas’s past. It does this by teaching students to interpret Texas sites that convey public history. We will read these sites by delving into the makings of the histories behind them, including the historic silences that also form them. At the same time, we will interrogate these places and their meanings for what they reveal about the power relations arrayed along lines of race, culture, gender, and economic status that underlie their creation as memorable and historically meaningful. In this way, students are provided with an understanding of the “facts” of Texas history from a variety of positions, an understanding of the work historical narratives do in the present, and how power operates in the making, telling, and remembering of Texas history.

Drawing on anthropological and historical methods, this course uses places in Austin, Texas such as the Josiah Wilbarger state historical marker, the Texas State Cemetery, the Littlefield Fountain, and the Gold Dollar building to examine the history of the peoples of Texas with attention to their racial and gendered histories. At the same time, we will explore how those who were involved in making these sites and their historical narratives, created shared beliefs about the past and how these narratives translate into ongoing ideas about who is and who is not Texan, American, worthy, civilized, or even human in the present.

AFR 321L • Sociology Of Education

30955 • Irizarry, Yasmiyn
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM RLP 1.108
(also listed as SOC 321L, WGS 345)
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The goal of this course is to ask some fundamental questions about the relationship between education and society. To answer these questions, we will take an in-depth look at the structures, practices, social contexts, and outcomes of schooling. We will examine the purpose and role of schools, explore the linkages between schools and social stratification, discuss how various schooling outcomes are produced, and consider sociological perspectives on contemporary educational inequality and reform. You will have many opportunities to reflect upon your own educational experience and worldview, while also thinking critically about how various social forces have come to shape your schooling experiences, and how these experiences may differ from that of your peers, as well as that of other young adults around the country.


The Structure of Schooling: Readings in the Sociology of Education, 3rd Edition. Both new and used copies, as well as ebook and rental options, are available online.

Additional readings will be available on Canvas.

Performance Assessment

Your final course grade will be determined as follows:

Participation................ 5%

Reading Quizzes.......... 10%

Discussion leader........ 3%

Discussion questions... 2%

Discussion responses.. 10%

Discussion.................... 15%

Reflection paper 1....... 15%

Reflection paper 2....... 15%

Reflection Papers........ 30%

Exam 1......................... 20%

Exam 2......................... 20%

Exams.......................... 40%

Grading Scale




























AFR 330 • Beyonce Fmnsm/Rihanna Wmnsm

30960-30975 • Holm, Charles
Meets MW 10:00AM-11:00AM WAG 214
(also listed as WGS 335)
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Beyoncé’s fifth live album Homecoming chronicled her performance as the first black woman to headline the Coachella festival. As with Lemonade, the film and performance put Beyoncé’s music in conversation with luminaries such as Toni Morrison and W.E.B. DuBois. Beyoncé’s contemporaries Rihanna and Lizzo similarly center black culture in their music and are unapologetic about their work’s engagement with issues specific to black womanhood. By engaging the music and videos of these and other Black femme recording artists as popular, accessible expressions of African American and Caribbean feminisms, this course explores their contribution to black feminist thought and their impact on global audiences. Beginning with close analysis of these artists’ songs and videos, we read their work in conversation with black feminist theoretical works that engage issues of race, location, violence, economic opportunity, sexuality, standards of beauty, and creative self-expression. The course aims to provide students with an introduction to media studies methodology as well as black feminist theory, and to challenge us to close the gap between popular and academic expressions of black women’s concerns.

AFR 330C • Fashion And Desire-Wb

30980 • Gill, Lyndon
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM • Internet; Synchronous
GC (also listed as WGS 340)
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This course explores historical and contemporary style in the African Diaspora. From head to toe, runways to street corners, art installations to music videos, “dandyism” to “swag,” Patrick Kelly to Kanye West, Josephine Baker to Beyoncé, we investigate the sartorial as a wearable art form and a political arena. We unfurl the tapestry of desires that encircles black fashion in the U.S. and globally, combing through the intertwined threads of passionate creativity, sexual fetishization, corporeal autonomy, capitalism consumerism, suffocating conformity and humorous play amongst other topics.



Gott, Suzanne & Kristyne Loughran

2010    Contemporary African Fashion. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Miller, Monica

2009    Slaves to Fashion: Black Dandyism and the Styling of Black Diasporic Identity. Durham: Duke University Press.

Tamagni, Daniele

2009    Gentlemen of Bacongo. London: Trolley Books.

Tulloch, Carol

2004    Black Style. London: Victoria & Albert Museum.

White, Shane & Graham White

1999    Stylin’: African American Expressive Culture, from Its Beginnings to the Zoot Suit. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.

AFR 330F • Wrtg For Black Performance

30985 • Thompson, Lisa
Meets T 2:00PM-5:00PM RLP 1.102
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This course will require students to write theatrical pieces as well as critical essays about the performance of black identity in America. Participants will also give oral presentations and perform readings of their work using various African-American performance styles. Students will read texts that examine African-American performance, contemporary black identity, and expressive culture. During the semester, we will explore what Lajos Egri describes as “the art of dramatic writing” or, depending on your style and interests, the art of comedic writing. We will consider the magic of theater and learn ways to use words to shape action on the stage. The main objectives of this course are finding or refining your voice, learning how to write a play or performance text and presenting it to an audience. The term will be spent reading theatre, writing plays and talking about plays–and if we are lucky, maybe even seeing a show or two. This class will introduce students to different theatrical formats such as solo performance, the choreopoem, one-acts, and the full-length traditional play. We will discuss character development, dialogue, monologue, conflict and setting. In acknowledgement of some of the difficulties writers face, we will also consider topics such as inspiration, technique and discipline as well as do a variety of writing exercises. We will also devote time performing assigned texts as well as what we write during class. The course will culminate with staged readings of excerpts from your final projects. 

AFR 330T • Diasporic Magic: Lit/Perf

30990 • Young, Hershini
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM PAR 302
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Course Description:

A child born when the door between the spirit and material world was swinging open, 100 year old vampires who look like little girls, and crack cocaine as a character with a wicked sense of humor: this class will use satirical and slightly off-kilter texts and performances to examine reallife dark forces that plague contemporary black societies across the world. Moving from Southern Africa to black England to African America, this class explores not just the meaning of race, gender and sexuality, but also how those categories of identity can be reimagined given the omnipresent threat that black lives face. We will pay close attention to both issues of context (historical, socio-economic and anthropological) as well as to questions of structure and genre. Specifically we will think through notions of Afrofuturism, addiction, ecological disaster capitalism, thinking through how the ways black people make and embody art inform the content. The class will also include a large number of contemporary cultural texts such as music videos, popular dance trends and music.


1. Fledgling by Octavia Butler

2. An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

3. Delicious Foods: A Novel by James Hannaham

4. Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

5. The Girl with All the Gifts (Film)

6. Pumzi directed by Wanuri Kahiu (Film)

7. “In their Own Form” (Jan 21-May 16): Christian Green Gallery and Idea Lab

8. The Fits directed by Anna Rose Holmer (Film)

9. Performances by Nelisiwe Xaba, Serge Attukwei Clottey, Nora Chipaumire, Wura Natasha-Ogunji and Faka

Supplemental theoretical material will be provided on various authors in course documents.

AFR 335G • Diaspora Visions-Wb

30994 • Okediji, Moyosore
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM • Internet; Synchronous
GC (also listed as WGS 340)
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AFR 350J • Hiv/Aids Activism/Heal Arts-Wb

31015 • Gill, Lyndon
Meets MW 10:00AM-11:30AM • Internet; Synchronous
GC (also listed as WGS 335)
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The AIDS pandemic is still far from over. This course explores the historical and contemporary phenomenon of HIV/AIDS principally in the art and activism of the African Diaspora. For over three decades we as a species have been using activism and artistry to champion the cause, mourn the dead, prevent infection and encourage healthy HIV+ lives. Here in the United States, in the American South, and at UT, we are part of a global movement of contagiously creative and inf ectiously  passionate people determined to honour, preserve and celebrate life in this age of AIDS. Throughout the semester, we will gather local and international resources, tools and strategies vital for our global well-being.

AFR 350Q • African-American Politics

31020 • Philpot, Tasha
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM PAR 204
(also listed as GOV 371G)
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AFR 350T • Domestic Slave Trade

31025 • Berry, Daina
Meets W 3:00PM-6:00PM GAR 1.134
CDWr HI (also listed as HIS 350R)
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AFR 351N • Black Political Thought

31030 • Holm, Charles
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM MEZ 2.124
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Black political reflection is constituted by a distinctive and ongoing preoccupation with freedom. Conceived and practiced in and/or against the political evils of slavery, segregation, racial terror, and mass incarceration, these reflections rank among political theory’s most acute treatments of freedom and domination. In this course, we shall examine some of the some of the most important of these reflections and the multiple traditions of Black political thought they represent. By doing so, this course seeks to provide a substantive engagement and critical assessment of Black Political Thought; illuminate the particular substance and character of our own conceptions of freedom and domination; and facilitate acquisition of conceptual tools necessary for understanding the political legacies of slavery and empire within post-slavery liberal political regimes like the U.S.

AFR 352F • Sociocul Influences On Learn

31035 • Brown, Keffrelyn
Meets T 10:00AM-1:00PM SZB 4.502
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AFR 360 • Race, Law, And US Society

31040 • Thompson, Shirley
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PMA 5.112
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This seminar examines the intersection of racial ideology and legal culture in the United States. We will take a broad historical approach that spans the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, but we will also survey a range of contemporary sites where racial discourses permeate American law and conceptions of the rights and responsibilities of citizens. The legal construction of race in America is inextricably bound up with the development and dissolution of the institution of race-based slavery. Therefore, a consideration of laws concerning slavery, segregation, and desegregation will form the backbone of the course. We will pay special attention to Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857); Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)and Brown v. Board of Education (1954), cases that span a crucial century. By considering the long trajectories of race, law, and social transformation, we will begin to see how racial reasoning has informed many aspects of U.S. legal culture for a wide range of ethnic and social groups and how race has influenced the development of property law, family law, immigration law, and civil rights law.

This course will embrace interdisciplinary methods: we will put court cases in conversation with literature, film, social scientific writings, music, and other pertinent material. The goals of this course include 1. exploring the social and legal construction of race at various moments in American history; 2. understanding the intersection of race, gender, class, ethnicity, sexuality, and other markers of identity; 3. examining the interpenetration of law and popular cultural forms; and 4. determining how race has informed American conceptions of a wide variety of issues, such as privacy, property, citizenship, national security, and sovereignty.

AFR 370 • Art, Id, Racial Difference

31050 • Chambers, Edward
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM ART 3.432
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AFR 370 • Black Cops Afr Am Pop Cultr

31055 • Walter, Patrick
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM GEA 127
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AFR 370 • Black Horror/Psychoanalysis

31060 • Walter, Patrick
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM WAG 308
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AFR 370 • Blackness In Cont Art Museum

31095 • Townsend, Phillip
Meets W 2:00PM-5:00PM JES A305A
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AFR 370 • Blk Filmmakrs Blxploitation

31065 • Sebro, Adrien
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM CMA 3.120
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AFR 370 • Interpreting Black Rage

31070 • Jones, Brandon
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM CAL 200
(also listed as LAH 351S)
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AFR 370 • Political Autobiographies

31075 • Alagraa, Bedour
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM GEA 114
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AFR 370 • Race And US Social Policy

31080 • Thomas, Kevin
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM GEA 127
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AFR 370 • Race/Class/Gender In Amer Tv

31085 • Sebro, Adrien
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM CMA 6.170
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AFR 370 • Sociology Of Africa

31090 • Weinreb, Alexander
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM RLP 1.102
Wr (also listed as SOC 321T)
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This course provides a broad introductory survey to Africa from a sociological perspective. Bridging classical macro and micro-sociological approaches, it has two principal aims: to deepen our understanding of Africa and African societies; and to help enrich sociological thought by incorporating Africa – long ignored – into the sociological mainstream.

The course is divided into three sections. The first addresses the problem of representation. How do we learn about Africa? How has the tension between Philo-Africans, those who romanticize Africa, and those driven to improve life on the “Dark Continent”, affected what we claim to know about Africa? How do Africans themselves feel and think about Africa? What are “authentic” African cultural forms and behavior?

The second section deals with political structure. By this we refer not only to the formal structure of African states and political authority, but also to constraints on states’ ability to project their formal authority. Some of these constraints are internal, related to specific countries’ ethnic and geographic characteristics. Others are external, stemming from African states’ embeddedness in global or transnational authority structures.

Having identified those constraints, the third and major section of the course deals with three key institutions that, either in addition to the state or in response to its failures, affect life on the ground. These three are: the extended family, religious institutions, and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). We will describe the key features and functions of each of these, document how they have changed over the last few decades, how they are likely to change in the near future, and outline the debates about how they should change (if at all).

The course is designed for upper-level undergraduates. Course reading will draw on both academic and popular non-fiction.


The coursepack will include chapters from:

Barley, Nigel. 1983. The Innocent Anthropologist: Notes from a Mud Hut. Penguin Books.

Herbst, Jeffrey. 2000. States and Power in Africa: Comparative Lessons in Authority and Control. Princeton University Press

Maren, Michael. 1997. The Road to Hell: The Ravaging Effects of Foreign Aid and International Charity. New York: Free Press.

Olivier, Roland. 1991. The African Experience: Major Themes in African History from Earliest Times to the Present. New York: HarperCollins.

Trinitapoli, Jenny and Alexander Weinreb. 2012. Religion and AIDS in Africa. Oxford University Press

van de Walle, Nicholas. 2001. African Economies and the Politics of Permanent Crisis, 1979-99. Cambridge University Press

wa Thiongo, Ngugi. 1986. Decolonizing the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature. London: Heinemann

Articles in leading academic journals (mainly sociological) will also be assigned. These include:

Dodoo, Francis, and Nicola Beisel. 2005. “Africa in American Sociology: Invisibility, Opportunity, and Obligation.” Social Forces 84(1): 595-600

Frye, Margaret. 2012. “Bright Futures in Malawi’s New Dawn: Educational Aspirations as Assertions of Identity.” American Journal of Sociology, 117(6), pp. 1565-1624

Manglos, Nicolette and Alexander Weinreb. 2013. “Religion and interest in politics in sub-Saharan Africa” Social Forces 92 (1): 195-219

Swidler, Ann, and Susan Cotts Watkins. 2009. “‘Teach a Man to Fish’: The Sustainability Doctrine and Its Social Consequences.” World Development 37 (7): 1182–1196

Tavory, Iddo, and Ann Swidler. 2009. “Condom Semiotics: Meaning and Condom Use in Rural Malawi.” American Sociological Review 74 (2): 171–189

Trinitapoli, Jenny, and Sara Yeatman. 2011. “Uncertainty and Fertility in a Generalized AIDS Epidemic.” American Sociological Review 76 (6): 935-954

Weinreb, Alexander A. 2006. “The Limitations of Stranger-Interviewers in Rural Kenya.” American Sociological Review 71 (6): 1014-1039

Weinreb, Alexander A. 2001. “First politics, then culture: Accounting for ethnic differences in demographic behavior in Kenya.”  Population and Development Review 27 (3): 437-467

Grading Policy:

The final course grade will be based on:

  • A single written assignment/research paper (40% each) due by the end of the semester
  • two exams (25% each)
  • class participation (10%)


In each case, students will receive a +/- letter grade, based on the following performance levels:



Excellent grasp of subject matter; explains concepts clearly provides  relevant details and examples; draws clear and interesting connections, exceptionally original, coherent and well-organized; ideas clearly written/stated, outstanding classroom participation



Very good grasp of subject matter; explains concepts clearly; provides relevant details and examples; draws clear connections; ideas clearly written/stated



Good grasp of some elements above, others need work



Satisfactory grasp of some elements above



Uneven, spotty grasp of the elements above



Limited grasp of the above



Poor grasp of the above



Very poor grasp of the above



Little evidence of grasp of material, having done readings, attended class, or completed assignments



No evidence of having done readings, attended class, or completed assignments


AFR 375 • Community Internship

31105 • Irizarry, Yasmiyn
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 1.108
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Internship in a community organization that facilitates the economic, political, and social development of Austin's African American community. Students participate in research projects under the supervision of a faculty member.

AFR 385C • Identities

31114 • Falola, Oloruntoyin
Meets TH 3:30PM-6:30PM GAR 1.134
(also listed as HIS 381)
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AFR 386C • Black Political Thought

31115 • Marshall, Stephen
Meets T 11:00AM-2:00PM BUR 436B
(also listed as AMS 390)
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AFR 387C • Performnc/Race/Violence/Body

31120 • Smith, Christen
Meets T 3:30PM-6:30PM RLP 0.108
(also listed as WGS 393)
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AFR 387C • Surveillance: Art/Theory

31125 • Browne, Simone
Meets M 11:00AM-2:00PM RLP 0.124
(also listed as WGS 393)
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AFR 391 • Black Studies Methods

31130 • Vasudevan, Pavithra
Meets W 12:00PM-3:00PM GWB 1.138
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A survey of seminal black studies texts and methods that have transformed the social sciences, humanities, and fine arts in producing a distinct black studies epistemology. Explores what black studies scholars have done to transform traditional methods and disciplines in pursuit of a distinct black studies methodology.

AFR 392 • Black Studies Theory II

31135 • Alagraa, Bedour
Meets T 12:30PM-3:30PM BUR 128
(also listed as WGS 393)
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An in-depth exploration of the innovative, complex, and distinctively African diaspora social structures and cultural traditions, as well as the historical, cultural, political, economic, and social development of people of African descent.