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

Open AFR undergrad classes for Fall 2012!

Sat, August 25, 2012
Open AFR undergrad classes for Fall 2012!
Doings and Undoings - Tonya Engel

Please consider enrolling in the following open undergrad classes for the Fall 2012 semester. We are trying to get the word out about new and returning AADS faculty who are teaching amazing courses this fall!

For more information about the courses we offer this fall, please see the Fall 2012 registrar's site.

AFR372C – Postcolonial Women Writers (new AADS professor Dr. Omise’eke Natasha Tinsley)

How do women across the world view their positions as citizens, migrants, workers, parents, activists, and artists in this new millennium? This course explores answers to these questions by engaging literary work published by postcolonial women writers in the past decade. The creative texts that we consider question whether the effects of imperialism have ended in women’s lives; whether Western feminisms have developed to address Global Southern women’s needs; and what new possibilities for decolonization, feminism, and creativity remain to be explored.

AFR317E – Black Queer Diaspora Aesthetics (new AADS professor Dr. Lyndon Gill)

This interdisciplinary course explores over two decades of work produced by and about queer subjects of African descent throughout the circum-Atlantic world. While providing an introduction to various artists and intellectuals of the black queer diaspora, this seminar examines the distinct socio-cultural, historical and geographical contexts in which same-sex desire and gender variance are embraced or contested in African diasporic communities.

AFR317F – Toni Morrison & August Wilson (new AADS professor Dr. Lisa Thompson)

Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison and Tony award-winning playwright August Wilson are two of the most honored and prolific African American writers in recent history. They both make race (and particularly blackness) central to their work. During the term we will study how notions of race and power erupt in Morrison's "fantastic earthy realism" and Wilson's "dramatic vision." We will also trace African American cultural influences such as folktales, blues and jazz in their writing. Finally, we will measure their reach and authority as public intellectuals by discussing their essays, interviews, and speeches.

AFR 303 – Introduction to African and African Diaspora Studies (Dr. Edmund Gordon) - Global Cultures flag, counts for the COLA Social Science requirement

This course, taught by the chair of the AADS department, 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 at 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.

AFR317E – Diaspora: Race/Nation/Resistance (Dr. Minkah Makalani)

This course offers students a comparative study in the makings and meanings of diaspora. We begin by defining the differences and similarities between diaspora and related concepts such as race, nation and cultural identity. Focusing specifically on the making of the Black Atlantic world, we then draw a comparative analysis between black diasporic life and that of other global dispersals, particularly among Asian and indigenous populations. Resistance serves as a key link in this comparative study.  As such, we focus on themes such as slavery and colonialism, black revolt in the modern world, Third World/Afro-Asian liberation, Black/Third World Feminism, globalization, the sexual politics of diaspora, Across each of these themes, we work with the premise that diaspora is an open and fluid space through which its participants “make our world anew.”

AFR372C – Black Political Thought (Dr. Stephen Marshall) (Writing Flag)

In this course we will examine radical traditions of black political thought. Engaging thinkers who jettison the project of political reform in favor of social and political transformation, we shall explore a variety of writers and texts for what they have to teach us about ongoing legacies of slavery, empire, and patriarchy within the US. We will look at exemplary writings of black marxism, black feminism, Afrocentricity, and Afro-Pessimism among other traditions. 

AFR372C – Black Middle Class (new AADS professor Dr. Lisa Thompson)

During this term we will embark on an interdisciplinary exploration of the African American middle class with a particular emphasis on the post-Civil Rights era. Using autobiography, film, history, photography, literature, music, television, and sociology this course will consider how the black middle class has been imagined, defined and represented. By examining the debates within and about the black middle class, we will complicate constructions of race in America. The course is particularly interested in investigating the following: the idea of class privilege for a racially marginalized group; conflicts between the black middle class and the working class; the role of the black middle class in policing black sexuality; the notion of middle class rage; the rise of the black nerd; assertions of racial authenticity; the new black aesthetic; the politics of affirmative action.

AFR372E/4 – African-American Literature Through the Harlem Renaissance (Dr. Matt Richardson) – Writing Flag, Cultural Diversity Flag

The eighteenth century saw the inauguration of writing from enslaved Africans in America. Even from a condition of bondage, their work contributes to literary and intellectual debates about the nature and limitations of freedom, personhood and citizenship. We will begin by examining issues of gender and sexuality from the perspectives of slaves and freed people. We will also examine works by African American authors writing a generation after slavery as they look back to slavery in order to imagine the future of African Americans. This course is a survey of major black writers in the context of slavery and its immediate aftermath from the eighteenth century and ending in the beginning of the twentieth century. Throughout the course, we will view films and documentaries that illuminate this period of African American culture and history.

Bookmark and Share