This course is designed to introduce students to the discipline of African and Diaspora Studies, which is the study, interpretation, and dissemination of knowledge concerning African-American, African, and Caribbean affairs and culture. Our chief aim is to look at the arts and culture of people of African descent with specific attention at the retention of Africanisms in New World Contexts. As such, we will devote attention to music, dance, religion, and literature as ways of influencing and creating space for voice, inclusion, and identity in New World contexts. We will further investigate the transformation of these themes over the last 500 hundred years as Africans, African Americans and African Caribbeans have been exposed to European domination and exploitation.
ADST 492 00. ADST Senior Project
Prerequisite: Permission of Program Director
Note: Students must submit an Independent Study -Senior Project Proposal-- to the Registrar's office, Recitation Hall, for final approval. After final approval, the student will be officially registered for the credits.
During the senior year, our minors are required to complete a two-credit Senior Project that explores the Black Diasporic connections between academic disciplines. Students often study and analyze the intersection of African and Diaspora Studies and their major. For example, one student produced and directed a compilation of scenes from plays by two important African American playwrights while another planned a Black Knowledge Conference for the Wittenberg community in conjunction with the Office of Multicultural Student Programs.
English 190A/C - Afro-Caribbean Studies: Migratory Subjects
4 semester hours
Prerequisite: ENGL 101E
This course will examine major writers from contemporary Caribbean literature. The course will introduce students to the literary works and cultural history of English-speaking Caribbean authors who have migrated from their respective Islands to the U.S., Canada and Europe. In Migratory Subjects, students will examine short stories, poetry, political essays and novels written by women authors from Trinidad, Barbados, Jamaica, Guyana and Haiti. We will look at their work as an entry point into the migratory experience that aids in the formation of nationhood for Caribbean writers of the African Diaspora. Possible authors include, Dionne Brand, Grace Nichols, Audre Lorde, Michelle Cliff, and Edwidge Danticat.
HIST 173C 1W. Settlers and Liberators of South Africa
This course will focus on conflict in South Africa from a historical perspective. We will consider the nature of the European colonial societies and the Africans who resisted them. Africans fought not only against a range of inequalities, but in their creative resuscitation of a suppressed past, fought over descriptive languages, social and cultural categories that are themselves the product of domination. Africans used passive, hidden, and violent methods to overcome a variety of difficulties in achieving independence and survival. Readings will include novels, biographies, and a few manuscripts. Students will be evaluated on class participation, take-home exams, and papers based upon the readings. Writing intensive.
HIST 203H 1W. Historian's Craft: Negro Leagues
Prerequisite: Sophomore standing
The course will focus on the Negro Leagues that existed in the United States from the early 20th century until the late 1960s. We will also explore the experience of black baseball players both before and after the period of segregation in the United States. While it is essential that we come to grips with the broader political, social, and economic institutions that supported racial segregation, the main focus of this course is to expose the lives that black baseball players made for themselves. In exploring the lives of African-American baseball players, we will focus on an emerging culture and the evolution of race relations. Of particular interest will be the few successful Negro Leagues that operated from 1919 through the 1940s and the long process of breaking baseball's color barrier from 1946 through the 1960s.
This course is designed to teach students the basic skills of researching and writing a historical paper. Assessment will be based on a book review, two take home exams, and the main component of the grade will be based on the research assignments and final paper. Writing intensive.
PHIL 200A 01/02. Philosophy and Art of Hip-Hop Culture
This course will look at the content and forms of Hip Hop Expression as well as the assessment of performance, lyrics and images placed upon, and embodied by, its audience. This course will be taught thematically, focusing particularly to the fundamental human questions such as: The search for God, love and knowledge; the historical concerns of cultural authenticity, race and sexuality; language as artistic expression and meaning; Chiefly we are looking at Hip Hop as a Cultural Socratic Art-Form, namely the historic look at Hip-Hop's ability to question, inform and engage in the search for purpose within a democracy through its drama, music, and cultural forms.
PHIL 200R 01/02. Race, Gender, Science and Medicine
4.00 credit hours
Supplemental instruction available.
In Race, Gender, Science and Medicine students will critically analyze: 1. The role of race and gender in science and medicine; i.e. how these impact the doing of science and medicine. 2. How science and medicine have studied race and gender. 3. The interaction between science, medicine, and marginalized people. We will look at variety of views on these issues, assess the evidence and arguments that are presented to us through our texts and hopefully have energetic class discussions about the material. You will be assessed through quizzes, written assignments, essay exams, and a final project. This course is reading intensive.
SOCI 277 C/R 1W & 2W Islam and Islamic Societies
This course will provide a broad introduction to the religion of Islam, accompanied by an examination of the connections between Islam and the varied life of Muslim societies and of Muslim minority communities in non-Muslim societies. Given the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the West's military reprisals and subsequent reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, the ongoing struggle of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the devastation of the 2004 tsunami in Indonesia and elsewhere in the Indian Ocean basin, and other problem situations, knowledge of these issues has become of highest priority. We will seek to understand the complex sources of conflict in areas in which Islam is implicated in some way; we will also try to become acquainted with the rich cultural life of Muslims. We will consider Muslim societies all over the world, but, in support of the minor in African and Diaspora Studies, we will give a special emphasis to Islam in Africa and to African American Islam.
Course format: lecture/seminar, with much group discussion. Graded Requirements: A variety of writing exercises throughout the term, oral presentations, examinations and a term project. Students should expect one or more alternative class meetings during the evening to accommodate guest speakers. This course is Writing Intensive (W) and can be taken for either “C” or “R” credit in General Education.
SOCI 350 01&02 Race and Ethnicity
Race and ethnicity continue to be important markers of identity, stratification, and political action in the world. This course will expose you to concepts and theories that can promote an understanding of the roles of race and ethnicity in contemporary society and guide new ways of thinking about these issues. Specifically, the course will introduce you to the sociocultural analysis of race and ethnic group membership in its various historical and geographical contexts around the world. Why has racial/ethnic group membership remained a salient factor in social life? What factors perpetuate racial/ethnic stratification? When does racial/ethnic group membership form the basis of social and political mobilization? Key concepts will be critically evaluated, with attention drawn to their ideological basis, explanatory power, and policy implications. Students will be encouraged to think critically about the social issues under study and their relevance to their own lives as members of a global society.
THDN 210C Dance Ethnology
4 Semester Hours
Chang, Shih-Ming Li
The purpose of this course is to provide knowledge and understanding of different cultures around the world by comparing and analyzing the differences of their dances. Through the understanding of the basic elements of time, space, and movement quality, the course will help students develop the ability to analyze different styles, forms, and functions of the dances of different countries and cultures. The course format includes video viewing, lecture/discussion, research, and learning some folk dances. Grading is based upon participation, assignments, a midterm, a final exam, and a presentation.